FCC says jump! Telcos say How high?


broadband gets redefined

FCC raises the broadband bar

Apparently, still not satisfied with the level of instability it has helped create in the Telecom industry, the FCC launches another assault.  Just yesterday the FCC voted (along party lines – there’s a surprise) to boot the definition of broadband up from 4Mb (downstream) to a whopping 25Mb.  The FCC’s message is that the US is seriously lagging behind the rest of the world with regards to speed and it expects the industry to jump over the bar it just raised. 

According to the commissioned report (here), the “FCC Finds U.S. Broadband Deployment Not Keeping Pace…  Section 706 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 requires the FCC to report annually on whether broadband “is being deployed to all Americans in a reasonable and timely fashion,” and to take “immediate action” if it is not. Congress defined broadband as “high-quality” capability that allow users to “originate and receive high-quality voice, data, graphics, and video” services.”

“Today’s report offers a valuable assessment of US broadband and will hopefully serve as an impetus for meaningful improvements in the speed and availability of true high-speed networks for all Americans,” FCC chairman Tom Wheeler said in a statement (here). “We know where we need to be. Now we need to do the hard work to get there.”

The FCC’s rejigging of the broadband definition now means that 55 million people, or 17 percent of the US population, now lack “broadband access. In particular rural and tribal lands where singled out as being on the wrong side of the digital divide.

Whether or not this is a positive move (I can see valid points on both sides), shouldn’t the FCC be concerned with putting the lid back on some of the can of worms it has already opened, before opening more?

More Here… [Motherboard]


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