Austin and KC owe Californians a thank you card for paying their Internet bill

31 March 2016 by Steve Blum
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The gift that keeps on giving.

The fiber to the premise analysis done by the City and County of San Francisco summed up the likely competitive response to a municipal build in two words: Google Fiber. Incumbents in the markets Google targeted responded with upgrades and lower prices…

The incumbent providers’ responses to Google Fiber’s expansion in other cities may foreshadow their responses to a municipal network in San Francisco. After Google Fiber came to Kansas City, incumbent providers Comcast and Time Warner upgraded their networks to double residential speeds, which lowered the dollar per megabit cost of bandwidth for their customers.


AT&T writes its own permission slip to end California wireline service

23 March 2016 by Steve Blum
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Cheaper to chop than fix.

AT&T wants to rip out its copper phone networks in California and sell wireless voice and broadband service instead. Its lobbyists in Sacramento wrote a bill – assembly bill 2395 – that would give AT&T blanket permission to shut down regulated plain old telephone service and replace it with whatever kind of unregulated technology it deems most profitable.

For customers lucky enough to live in a high potential area – someplace dense enough with customers and cash to make wireline service sufficiently lucrative – that’ll mean voice over Internet protocol phone service running on one flavor or another of DSL broadband.… More

AT&T tries $100 million grab from California taxpayers

21 March 2016 by Steve Blum
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AT&T wants to change California law so that it can take $100 million from taxpayers, for broadband service that’s considered unacceptable under state standards. Assembly bill 2130 was rewritten by AT&T lobbyists and re-introduced last week. It would 1. freeze the current California Advanced Services Fund (CASF) broadband infrastructure subsidy program, 2. authorise the collection of $100 million more from taxpayers, 3. distribute it according to byzantine rules that all but guarantee that the money would go to AT&T to spend as it pleases, while 4.… More