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Truth in Broadband Advertising

We're all used to crazy advertising about telecom products that make industry folks shake their heads -- many of the ads about 5G come to mind. Most people don't realize that carriers in the industry routinely challenge the claims made by competitors to force them to modify or drop deceptive ads. Most of the largest corporations in the country belong to the National Advertising Division (NAD), which is part of the Better Business Bureau and arbitrates disputes about advertising between participants in the plan. more

Let’s Get the Politics Out of Infrastructure

I believe the infrastructure of our country, states, and counties is critically important to our future. If we can get focused on infrastructure and global warming, the future for our kids and grandkids will be bright. All it takes is vision, leadership, and investment. Unfortunately, the issues have become politicized. In the case of infrastructure, the politicians have a tough time just defining what infrastructure is. more

Broadband Benefitting US Households by Over $30 Billion Annually, According to Study

According to a recent study, broadband Internet access is now considered by many US households a necessity and they turn to broadband Internet during recession. The study released by Jonathan Orszag, Robert Willig, and Mark Dutz suggests that with $32 billion gains in 2008, consumers increasingly benefit from using broadband at home. "Once people get a taste of the entertainment, educational opportunities, social networking and everyday services that broadband access facilitates, they grasp the immense value it can add to their lives as a powerful tool, regardless of where they come from," said Co-Chairman of the Internet Innovation Alliance Bruce Mehlman. "Once a broadband user, always a broadband user." more

China Takes on SpaceX: 13,000 Satellites to Compete With and Monitor SpaceX’s Starlink Constellations

China plans to send almost 13,000 satellites into low-Earth orbit to compete with and monitor SpaceX's Starlink constellations. The project, codenamed "GW," is being run by a newly established group called China Satellite Network Group Co, whose goal is to launch a total of 12,992 small satellites into orbit quickly. more

Lies, Damn Lies, and Selective Statistics About Our Great Wireless Marketplace Thanks to the T-Mobile

In the February 13th edition of the Wall Street Journal, Professor Thomas W. Hazlett offers a breathless endorsement of market concentration with the T-Mobile acquisition of Sprint, his go-to example. Apparently, mergers and acquisitions benefit consumers because they enhance competition and generate all sorts of positive outcomes that could not possibly have occurred but for the reduction in the number of industry players. more

SpaceX and Indonesia Launch SATRIA-1 Satellite: A $540 Million Leap Towards Comprehensive Internet Connectivity

In a joint venture worth $540 million, SpaceX and Indonesia have successfully launched SATRIA-1, the nation's largest telecommunication satellite, to improve internet connectivity in remote regions of the archipelago. more

Is the Broadband Industry Reaching Maturity?

Craig Moffett, of MoffettNathanson, was recently quoted in FierceTelecom asking if the broadband industry is reaching maturity. Other than in rural areas, where many homes are still hungry for better broadband, the broadband penetration rate in cities is approaching 90%. It's a fair question to ask if there is room for much more growth in the industry. This is a question that has bounced around for the last five years. more

Will Electronically Steered Antennas Replace Parabolic Antennas in Satellite Ground Stations? (ChatGPT-Assisted Version)

In a previous post, I asked whether electronically steered antennas (ESAs) would replace parabolic antennas in satellite ground stations. I read a few articles suggested by others and by Google search, used some common sense, produced a list of advantages of ESAs, and concluded that it was likely they would eventually replace parabolic antennas for many applications. more

Copper Thieves in New Brunswick Impacting Bell Aliant Customers

Bell Aliant customers in the Canadian province of New Brunswick have been experiencing repeated and prolonged disruption to their internet, home phone, and TV services due to vandalism to Bell's network. more

Ireland’s Solution to the Rural Divide

The pandemic has given the whole world a pause to consider if we should return to business as usual when the pandemic is behind us. Ireland has a unique reaction and is something that could make sense here. Ireland plans to provide incentives to lure people from cities back to smaller rural towns. Like much of the world, Ireland has seen decades of young people moving to cities to find work, leaving behind shrinking and aging rural towns. more

The Benefits of Thinner Fiber

Fiber manufacturers are always trying to make it easier to deploy fiber. One of the most interesting trends is the increasing migration from 250-micron fiber to 200-micron fiber. For those not familiar with the metric system, a micron is one-thousands of a millimeter. A 250-micron fiber has a diameter of 0.25 millimeters, while a 200-micron fiber has a diameter of 0.2 millimeters. more

Let’s Not Forget the Lobbyists

Common Cause recently released a report, Broadband Gatekeepers, that describes the influence that lobbyists have on broadband policies. The numbers are staggering -- the ISP industry spent $234 million lobbying the 116th Congress (2019 and 2020). That number is likely understated since the rules on reporting lobbying are lax, and enforcement is almost nonexistent. That number doesn't include the huge amounts of lobbying efforts at State legislatures. more

New York City’s Broadband Reversal

New York City has done a 180-degree turnaround on the concept of the City providing broadband to low-income households. In 2020, then-May Bill de Blasio announced a plan to bring affordable broadband to low-income households. That Master Plan said that the City would make a $157 million infrastructure investment to provide broadband to around 600,000 homes that includes 200,000 residents of public housing. more

China’s Satellite Internet Ambitions: A Quest to Rival SpaceX

China launched a notable 67 commercial rockets in a single year, marking a significant effort to catch up with the United States, which led with 116 launches, primarily for SpaceX's Starlink project. more

Widespread Network Outages Disrupt AT&T Services Across the US

In a significant service disruption early Thursday, AT&T's network experienced widespread outages, affecting cellular service and internet connectivity for users across the United States. According to the tracking site Downdetector, the issues began around 4 a.m. ET, with over 32,000 reports of outages, which surged to more than 71,000 by 8 a.m. ET. more