Broadband

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Expect Big Changes from Streaming Video

One of the biggest uses of bandwidth continues to be streaming video from the many online vendors like Netflix, Disney, Hulu, and many others. Final 2022 earnings reports show that this is an industry segment in crisis. Altogether, the losses for just these four video platforms were almost $11 billion in 2022. There are other big platforms like Apple, Google (YouTube), and Amazon that don't specifically report on the performance of the video streaming segment. more

It’s Time to Change the US’ Cuba-Internet Strategy

In a post last week, I advised Cuban President Díaz-Canel that investment in fixed broadband Internet would benefit both the Cuban people and his regime. This week, I've got advice for US President Biden -- don't try to out-pander the Republicans and call President Díaz-Canel's bluff by offering support for fixed broadband. What won't work... more

Remote Learning and Preschoolers

A recent article in the MIT Technology Review described the benefits that remote learning can bring to preschoolers. The article described a study by the MacArthur Foundation that has not yet been peer-reviewed. The research described the results of bringing preschool to Syrian refugees. more

Massive African Internet Outage and the Fragility of Undersea Cables

Eight countries in West Africa reported Internet outages after damage was reported to four different undersea fiber cables. The most affected countries are Ivory Coast, Liberia, and Benin, with additional problems caused in Ghana, Nigeria, and Cameroon. Lesser impact was felt in South Africa, Senegal, and Portugal. There has been no official word on what caused the problem, but it's likely due to the shifting of the seabed due to seismic activity. more

Broadband Deserts

Perhaps it's because the death of Queen Elizabeth has been everywhere in the news, but somebody sent me an article from the BBC from 2008 where then Prince Charles warned that the lack of rural broadband in the UK was going to eventually result in broadband deserts. The now King Charles III was quoted as saying that lack of broadband puts too much pressure on the people who live without broadband and that if a solution wasn't found... more

Telehealth Successes: American Medical Association Presents Impactful Case Studies

The American Medical Association fully supports telehealth. The group now has gathered enough evidence of the effectiveness of telehealth and touts the advantages of telehealth to its member physicians. There are still a few ongoing issues involving compensation, privacy, liability, and of course, rural patients without broadband access. more

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

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

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

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

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

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