Sunday, June 18, 2017

The incredibly misinformed "experts"

Lawmakers itching to advance high-speed Internet funding: Last month, the agency issued a notice of proposed rulemaking seeking comment on actions to remove regulatory barriers to infrastructure investment at all levels of government and to better enable broadband providers to build, maintain and upgrade their networks. "This is the kind of thing that is going to get more broadband into the hands of consumers," Joe Kane, a tech policy associate with the R Street Institute, told the Washington Examiner. "It's not a sexy political battle, but it's getting to the [question of] why is your computer really slow? A better example is people who don't currently have broadband. It's people in rural areas where it hasn't been profitable to build out there. Now that we have 5G on the horizon, it'll be more possible tor each those areas."
This except illustrates how misinformed even the experts are when it comes to modernizing  America’s telecommunications infrastructure. First of all, the U.S. Federal Communications  Commission is focusing on the wrong issue. It isn’t regulatory barriers that inhibit investment in modern fiber telecommunications infrastructure that serves all premises. The main obstacle is the continued misguided reliance on vertically integrated, investor owned legacy telephone and cable companies to build it. Their business models are incompatible since they require a rapid return on investment. Infrastructure investment by comparison requires billions in patient capital they simply don’t have or cannot raise.

Second, 5G mobile wireless service doesn’t even exist yet. When it does, the same economic constraints that prevent the telcos and cablecos from connecting customer premises with fiber will be at work because all those 5G cell sites will require a lot of fiber to be built to serve them. Doug Dawson explains at his POTS and PANS blog.

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