Friday, April 22, 2016

Selling vertically integrated "gigabit" service inefficient, reinforces disparate access

What it's like to take on Google Fiber in Nashville: One firm's take - Nashville Business Journal: For more than two years, Nashvillians have salivated over the eventual arrival of Google Fiber, super high-speed internet courtesy of one of the world's most idolized tech companies. But while Google has yet to share specifics on when that network will officially launch in Music City, other players have made their own moves. Most notably, legacy telecoms AT&T and Comcast have launched their own networks, but smaller players like Shelbyville-based Athena Broadband are also getting in on the gigabit game.
This is a disturbing pattern that reinforces America's crazy quilt, disparate access to advanced telecommunications service. Given the high cost of constructing telecommunications infrastructure, it would be far more efficient to have a single entity build it and allow various Internet service providers to offer services over it. Instead, the U.S. continues to emulate the failed monopolistic vertically integrated business model of the legacy telephone and cable companies with its neighborhood cherry picking and redlining that have led to the nation's widespread access disparities.

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