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Infrastructure

Building the internet infrastructure necessary to power Smart Cities, ignite innovation in Rural America, and unlock the potential of public-private partnerships.

Rhode Island Community Considering Fiber-Optic Open Access Network 

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: Open access networks, such as those proposed by SiFi Networks, are important because they allow for the next generation applications and services. This story updates how a Rhode Island community is considering the company for its fiber network. Economic Development Commission keeps SIFI high-speed Internet idea alive WESTERLY — The Economic Development… Keep Reading

Riverside County Introduces Broadband Initiative for Area the Size of New Jersey

RIVERSIDE, CALIFORNIA, April 19, 2017 – At 7,200 square miles, this Southern California county is nearly the size of New Jersey. On April 3, the county put out a “Request for Participants” in an effort to jump-start a $2 billion to $4 billion initiative building a gigabit fiber network. The project is dubbed RIVCOConnect, and represents… Keep Reading

Twists in the Broadband Mapping Saga, Plus the Need for Good Data Now, at Rural Telecom Congress

DALLAS, April 18, 2017 – Over the past ten years, broadband mapping has gone through many changes. In the beginning, the Federal Communications Commission collected data about high-speed internet access, but didn’t release any local or granular data collected through its semi-annual forms. Through the efforts of organizations like BroadbandCensus.com (the predecessor to BroadbandBreakfast.com), a… Keep Reading

Universal Service Administrative Corp. Unveils ‘New Look,’ Will Address Programs at Rural Telecom Congress

DALLAS, April 18, 2017 – The Universal Service Administrative  Corporation may not grab broadband headlines, but the once-obscure federal agency is central to helping rural America and other stakeholders get Broadband Broadband, Better Lives. USAC’s programs, plus its “new look,” will be the subject of the lead panel at the Rural Telecommunications Congress happening here… Keep Reading

Next Century City Hosts FCC Commissioner Clyburn, Republican Congressman Biggs, and Local Leaders at Broadband Summit in Arizona

MESA, ARIZONA – Next Century Cities will host a regional broadband summit, Digital Southwest, in Mesa, Arizona from 9:00am to 5:00pm MST next Tuesday, April 18, 2017 in partnership with the City of Mesa.To watch the full event live, go to: https://livestream.com/internetsociety/digitalsw/. The Regional Broadband Summit will kick off at 9:00am MST with a keynote conversation… Keep Reading

Register to Attend the Rural Telecommunications Congress Program at Broadband Communities Summit

DALLAS, April 6, 2017 – The Rural Telecommunications Congress program at the 2017 Broadband Communities Summit here on May 1-4, 2017, will feature panelists on the Universal Service Administrative Corporation’s role in bringing broadband to underserved and unserved communities, the role of broadband mapping in today’s telecommunications ecosystem, a case study of bringing broadband to… Keep Reading

Ajit Pai Comes to Senate Oversight Hearing, Defends his More Limited Vision of FCC Authority

WASHINGTON, March 10, 2017 – Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai defended his very vision of the agency’s role, as compared with his predecessor, during the first Senate Commerce Committee oversight hearing this year. The difference in attitude between Pai and former Chairman Tom Wheeler on broadband deployment highlighted the differences between the two. “High-speed… Keep Reading

Fiber to the Home Network Launches in Ammon, Idaho: Poses New Challenge to Vertically-Integrated Communications Incumbents

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: This came out just over a month ago, but is well worth highlighting. Ammon, Idaho, has developed a model that helps to break apart the closed-box model of the vertically-integrated communications providers. This article on Muni Networks well encapsulates some of the ways that Ammon’s network os so revolutionary.  Ammon Launches Its… Keep Reading

Wireless

‘Small Cells’ Are the Talk of the Wireless Industry, as Exemplified by this Pennsylvania Project

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: Small cell antennas and Distributed Antenna Systems are making a greater impact on local government decision-making. Frequently, wireless providers are seeking to install antennas on streetlights and other near-to-home locations in neighborhoods. Scranton, Pennsylvania, ‘Small Cell’ Antennas Anticipate Needs of Increasingly Connected Communities | Wireless companies are becoming more useful with the… Keep Reading

Rural Tennessee Sees Another Utility Venture into Fiber Marketplace

BROADBAND BREAKFAST INSIGHT: Another possible success story from Appalachia, where local utilities are stepping up to the plate and making fiber the new utility for middle America.  Morristown And Newport Buddy-Up For Broadband In Rural TN, from MuniNetworks.org Morristown Utilities Commission (MUC) and Newport Utilities (NU) in Tennessee have taken the first monumental step in… Keep Reading

Despite Trump Pledge, Congress and FCC Don’t Appear to Have Appetite for Broadband Infrastructure Investment

WASHINGTON, March 8, 2017 – Despite high hopes that President Trump’s campaign promise for a trillion-dollar infrastructure bill would lead to additional investment in high-speed internet access, it appears that broadband deployment and accessibility is taking a back seat in Congress to brick-and mortar projects. At a Senate Commerce Committee hearing last week on improving… Keep Reading

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai on Wireless in Barcelona

Broadband Breakfast Insight: Last Week’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona presented Federal Communications Chairman Ajit Pai with his first opportunity to law out his vision for communications. This recap from the Benton Foundation’s Robbie McBeath critiques his approach to the subject. Blame It On The Barcelona (Or Alternative Titles To Celebrate Alternative Facts) Federal Communications… Keep Reading

Infrastructure Spending To Take a Back Seat to Security Spending in Donald Trump’s Budget Message

WASHINGTON, February 28, 2017 – Plans to include broadband in a massive new infrastructure will probably take a back seat to President Trump’s security and physical infrastructure priorities in the budget blueprint he will describe during his maiden speech to a joint session of Congress tonight, multiple sources have told Broadband Breakfast News. While broadband has… Keep Reading

Broadband's Impact/Fiber

In Charlotte, Fiber to the Home Builds by Google, AT&T Still Require Cleanup

Broadband Breakfast Insight: This article in the Charlotte Observer highlights the fact that, even when people want fiber, there are inevitably logistical and infrastructure challenges that need to be managed in a fiber-to-the-home build. Both Google Fiber and AT&T are impacted by the problem. Busted water mains are the biggest problem for Google and AT&T contractors,… Keep Reading

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Pai Announces Broadband Advisory Group to Propose Model City Ordinances

WASHINGTON, January 31, 2017 – Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai on Tuesday announced the formation of a new federal advisory committee that would seek to accelerate deployment of high-speed broadband nationwide, and to close the digital divide, by providing a model approach to deployment for municipalities. “Access to broadband is increasingly critical for all… Keep Reading

MOBILE NOW Spectrum Measure, Internet of Things, and FCC Reauthorization Bills Clear Senate Committee

WASHINGTON, January 24, 2017 – The Senate Commerce Committee on Tuesday voted to advance 16 bills, including several with implications for telecommunications policy. The most significant communications-related measure among the bills clearing the committee was the so-called MOBILE Now Act, sponsored by Commerce Committee Chairman John Thune, R-South Dakota and Ranking Member Sen. Bill Nelson,… Keep Reading

White House Issues Executive Orders on Infrastructure, But Broadband Not Specifically Mentioned

WASHINGTON, January 24, 2017 – President Trump signed several executive orders Tuesday designed to expedite energy and infrastructure projects. Although high-speed broadband internet services are not specifically mentioned in the orders, one of them, “Expediting Environmental Reviews and Approvals For High Priority Infrastructure Projects,” (bolded below) could have an impact on projects that include broadband. The full… Keep Reading

Broadband News/Fiber

Coping With Changes to Google Fiber

Broadband Breakfast Insight: We have no information on the veracity of this speculation, from last week’s Fortune, but it is clear that the broadband ecosystem is in the midst of coping with Google’s retrenchment from expansions in the fiber marketplace. -> Why Google Might Be Getting Ready to Dump Its Fiber Internet Service, Fortune.com Recent… Keep Reading

Not in Las Vegas? Watch the Live Stream from CES

Broadband Breakfast Insight: We’re paying attention to the “Innovation Policy Stream” below, but this link provides a complete list to the live-streams at CES2017. The top three discussion points: Disruptive innovation, the internet of things and the sharing economy. -> Live-streamed events from CES2017 in Las Vegas Even if you can’t make it to Las… Keep Reading

How Rio Blanco Shows That a ‘Shared Network’ Can Make Sense in Rural Colorado

Broadband Breakfast Insight: A great article detailing the way that a rural community, even in a sparsely-populated region of Colorado, is able to make an open-access network work for the communities and residents of the region. -> Rio Blanco County Stays Relevant With Broadband, from Broadband Communities Magazine. Colorado became a hotbed of community broadband… Keep Reading

Small Cell Forum and 5G Americas Focus on Technical, Regulatory Approach to Wireless

Broadband Breakfast Insight: Small cells and Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS) are among the most discussed topics today in broadband infrastructure. These two reports put forward, largely from a global perspective, an industry-focused technical and regulatory approach to the deployment of 5G systems. -> Small Cell Forum and 5G Americas Collaborate to Drive Best Practice for Small… Keep Reading

Broadband News/Fiber

Utah’s Fiber-Friendly Infrastructure Puts it at Top of Akamai’s Broadband Speed Rankings

Broadband Breakfast Insight: Fiber is prevalent in the Utah broadband marketplace, both because of Google Fiber, and because of the Utah Telecommunications Open Infrastructure Agency. This helps push the speed upward on the state’s connection speeds.-> Utah Internet Speed #2 in the Country and #3 in the World – Utah Broadband Outreach Center Utah is tied… Keep Reading

Broadband News/Open Access

The National Broadband Network in Australia Begins to Take Root

Broadband Breakfast Insight: The Australian National Broadband Network is a massive undertaking: An open access network infrastructure build, with competing retail internet service providers offering service. It’s been controversial, but is beginning to get more established in the country.-> Does the National Broadband Network work?: From the Weekend Australian It’s a huge drain on the… Keep Reading

Community Broadband Center Leaders to Gather in Silicon Valley for AnchorNETS and NTIA Event on November 16-17

MOUNTAIN VIEW, California - Local broadband institutions seeking to leverage high-speed connectivity for the benefit of their broader communities will benefit from attending the inaugural AnchorNETS conference here on November 16 and 17.

Sponsored by the Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition, the AnchorNETS conference is being hosted in conjunction with the federal government's BroadbandUSA initiative on Tuesday, November 17. The AnchorNETS event will be keynoted by former Gov. Pat Quinn, the Illinois Democrat responsible for completion of a nearly $100 million, four-year project to install 1,000 miles of fiber-optic infrastructure throughout Illinois. “Governor Quinn's role in bringing together state, federal and local resources, from private and public sectors, in the pursuit of improved digital literacy and internet connectivity to Illinois anchor institutions is a model for all public officials," said John Windhausen, executive director of SHLB Coalition. Former Illinois Governor Pat Quinn [More...] Keep Reading

Fiber/Infrastructure

Utah Foundation Report Highlights Pioneering Work for Advanced Broadband, Including UTOPIA Gigabit Network

SALT LAKE CITY, October 19, 2015 - Utah has been leading the nation in many areas of broadband internet access and its proliferation, according to a report released on Wednesday by the non-profit Utah Foundation. "Utah’s history of investing early and its collaboration among many public and private entities has helped develop an infrastructure that can support the local business climate, including Utah’s expanding tech sector which is heavily reliant on high-capacity networks," reads the report, by Shawn Teigen, Christopher Collard and Robert Jordan of the foundation. "It is likely that future internet applications will require exceedingly high-speed internet, far beyond that which is available today. Preparing the infrastructure now may be prudent," write the authors. BenLomand [More...]

Fiber/Infrastructure/Smart Cities

Spurning Google Fiber, Portland Suburb of Lake Oswego Pushes Toward Broadband Partnership

LAKE OSWEGO, Oregon, October 14, 2015 - This suburb of Portland, a potential candidate for Google Fiber's Gigabit-speed internet service, has said it isn't willing to wait around for the search engine giant. At a city council meeting here on Tuesday night, elected officials in this city of 37,000 listened, questioned and debated between two proposed public-private partnerships that would result in the construction of Gigabit-speed fiber-optic infrastructure. City Council Meeting in Lake Oswego, Oregon Instead of sitting and waiting for Google, the city council members appeared inclined to move forward on a public-private project with city involvement. "There was a great buzz and excitement when Google announced" the possibility that it would come to Portland, said Councilmember Jon Gustafson during the session -- but the city hasn't wasn't seen any action since that time. Last year, Google announced possible expansion to Portland and five suburbs, including Lake Oswego. The company has made commitment, however. "Google is still at the vapor stage," added Chip Larouche, chief technology officer for the city. Speaking at the Tuesday meeting, he said that Google is "talking about how 'we might make you a promise.'" Instead, City Manager Scott Lazenby said that in June Lake Oswego put out a Request for Proposals to build their own Gigabit Network. The city received two responses from private companies, and one from the City's own Public Works Department. [More... Keep Reading

Drew Clark: What Henry Clay’s and Abraham Lincoln’s ‘Internal Improvements’ Means for Gigabit Infrastructure Today

Editor's Note: This column, "Once 'Athens of the West,' a Kentucky city seeks revival and improvements," was originally published in the Deseret News of Salt Lake City, Utah. Here is a complete list of Drew Clark's weekly columns for the paper. LEXINGTON, Ky. — This city now best-known for horse racing and bourbon was, 200 years ago, once described as the "Athens of the West." And while east-central Kentucky has since gone through its economic ups and downs, last month the state's civic leaders announced an ambitious fiber-optic development project that boosters say will once again put Kentucky in the national spotlight. 1606265Lexington enjoyed its early heyday from its founding in 1787 until the early decades of the 19th century. Its most notable resident was Henry Clay, the lawyer who became one of the three most influential national legislators (with Daniel Webster and John C. Calhoun) of the antebellum era. Clay, the founder of the Whig Party, was a vigorous advocate of the "American System" of internal improvements. Today we would describe these as infrastructure investments. It was the internal improvement sought by Clay that made transportation possible across the Western frontier. They began creating a truly national marketplace. Lexington bequeathed us another figure sympathetic to the Whig cause: Mary Todd Lincoln. Visiting the museum here that was her home, I learned that her father — a member of the Kentucky Legislature — frequently invited his politically minded young daughter to sit in on meetings with constituents. Mary Todd left Lexington, or course. More than 400 miles west, in Springfield, Illinois, she met and fell in love with a more hardscrabble Kentuckian. Abraham Lincoln also was a strong proponent of "internal improvements." [More...] Keep Reading

Broadband's Impact/Infrastructure

Digital New England Conference and Webcast Begins Monday at 8:30 a.m. ET with Obama Administration Telecom Officials

PORTLAND, Maine, September 28, 2015 – In the first significant conference following the release of the Broadband Opportunity Council Report and Recommendations, top telecommunications officials from the Obama administration — including the Departments of Commerce and Agriculture — will be speaking on Monday in Portland at “Digital New England: A Summit for Regional Broadband Leaders.”… Keep Reading

Former Architect of National Broadband Plan Says That Every City Needs a Broadband Plan

September 14, 2015 - Every city should create a city-wide broadband plan of its own, said the former director of the National Broadband Plan, in wide-ranging speech touting four strategies useful for different types of city broadband plans. Speaking on Friday at the National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Officers annual conference in San Diego, Blair Levin of the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program and the group Gig-U, said that every city should tackle four key strategies: (1) Getting fiber deeper into neighborhoods; (2) Using community WiFi; (3) Getting everyone online; and (4) Promoting innovative civic applications for broadband. Levin, the former architect of the Federal Communications Commission's broadband plan, crafted from 2009 to 2010, said that the United States was about the 20th country to adopt such a plan for the deployment of high-speed internet. Nearly 150 countries have one now. "With cities, we're where we were with countries in 2010. Several dozen have them," Levin said. "But now, such a plan is becoming table stakes for any city that wants its residents to be part of the 21st Century Information Economy." In his remarks, Levin addressed the pivotal role that Google Fiber has played in spurring the development of Gigabit Networks. Indeed, on Thursday, Google announced upcoming fiber-optic deployments in three new cities: Irvine, Calif., Louisville, Kentucky; and San Diego. He categories the types of cities, and they relative trajectories towards Gigabit Networks, as follows: "The first set of communities is those that either have or are likely to see Google Fiber enter. For these, the starting strategy is pretty simple. Accelerate to the extent possible, Google's entry." Whether or not Google comes, such cities will be well-situated for others, as well. Blair Levin [More...] Keep Reading

Startup Festival and Startup Culture Taking Root in Modern Provo, Home to BYU and Google Fiber

Editor’s Note: This past week, Drew Clark’s column in the Deseret News of Salt Lake City, Utah, was on the "The zeitgeist of modern Provo: Jobs and a good quality of life." Click here for links to all of his Deseret News columns. PROVO — What do you get when you cross a thriving technology and startup community with what Gallup called "the best place to live in America"? 1589348 That's the zeitgeist here in Utah County. It'll be celebrated with a new technology, business and cultural event here, dubbed Startfest, beginning on Monday, Aug. 31. And because of the still-coalescing cultural power of information and communications technologies, Utah as a whole is sending a message to the world: Citizens of a particular city or region are no longer necessarily forced to choose between quality of life and economic opportunity. [more...] Keep Reading

FCC Workshop on eRate Funding Shows New Flexibility for School and Library Fiber Builds

June 18, 2015 – Recent changes to the eligibility rules for the Federal Communication Commission’s eRate program open the door for new fiber connections for schools and libraries using agency funds. Among the rule changes were the suspension of the requirement that applicants seek funding for large up front construction costs over several years, the… Keep Reading

Consider the Broadband Breakfast Club in Salt Lake City, Discussing ‘GigUtah’: How Fiber Networks Are Transforming Utah

SALT LAKE CITY, April 28, 2015 - The Utah Breakfast Club and Broadband Breakfast Club released the video of the organizations' most recent event, "GigUtah: How Fiber Networks Are Transforming Salt Lake City, Provo and Utah."

Panelists from the event included:

  • Devin Baer, Head of Fiber Business, Salt Lake, Google
  • Paul Cutler, Mayor, City of Centerville
  • Brock Johansen, President, Emory Telecom, Orangeville, Utah
  • Justin Jones, Vice President, Public Policy and Communications, Salt Lake Chamber
  • David Shaw, Shareholder, Kirton McConkie; Chair, Government and Utilities Practice Group
  • Nole Walkingshaw, Manager, Institutional Engagement, Salt Lake City
  • Moderated by Drew Clark, Of Counsel, Kirton McConkie; Founder, Utah Breakfast Club
[watch video...] Keep Reading

Financing Public-Private Fiber Networks Becoming a Reality, Say Experts at Broadband Communities Summit

Panel on Municipal Debt Financing and Public-Private Partnerships Editor's Note: This is one of several wrap-up articles about the 2015 Broadband Communities Summit earlier this month in Austin, Texas. For the complete list of articles from the summit, visit http://broadbandbreakfast.com/2015/04/articles-from-the-2015-broadband-communities-summit-in-austin/ AUSTIN, April 27, 2015 - Raising funds to build high-speed internet infrastructure through municipal debt financing is finally becoming a reality, according to a panel of financiers and broadband builders speaking earlier this month here at the Broadband Communities Summit. Members of the panel, "Municipal Debt Financing and Public-Private Partnerships," surveyed the landscape of typical municipal bond financing -- traditionally used to build transportation infrastructure -- and discussed how it applies in the broadband space. While the financiers on the panel eagerly posed questions, some of the practitioners eagerly showcased models of bank-worthiness for building open-access fiber networks. [...] Keep Reading

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