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Commerce Department Awards 10 More Broadband Mapping Grants; Total Funding is $97 Million

WASHINGTON, January 13, 2010 – The Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration on Tuesday announced that it has awarded grants to fund broadband mapping and planning activities in Connecticut, Hawaii, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, and Texas under NTIA’s State Broadband Data and Development Grant Program.

With the grants, the NTIA has awarded 51 of the 56 applications: one for every state, plus the district of Columbia and five territories. The NTIA has spent approximately $97 million on the applications, the agency said.

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WASHINGTON, January 13, 2010 – The Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration on Tuesday announced that it has awarded grants to fund broadband mapping and planning activities in Connecticut, Hawaii, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, and Texas under NTIA’s State Broadband Data and Development Grant Program.

With the grants, the NTIA has awarded 51 of the 56 applications: one for every state, plus the district of Columbia and five territories. The NTIA has spent approximately $97 million on the applications, the agency said.

“Congress rightly recognized that increasing broadband access and adoption in communities being left behind in the 21st Century economy depends on better data collection and broadband planning,” said Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information and NTIA Administrator Lawrence Strickling. ”Our goal is to carry out this initiative on schedule and at the lowest cost necessary to do the job right.”

From the NTIA press release:

Connecticut: NTIA has awarded the Connecticut Department of Public Utility Control approximately $1.3 million for broadband data collection and mapping activities over a two-year period and nearly $500,000 for broadband planning activities over a two-year period in Connecticut, bringing the total grant award to approximately $1.8 million. The Department of Public Utility Control is the designated entity for the state of Connecticut.

Hawaii: NTIA has awarded Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs approximately $1.4 million for broadband data collection and mapping activities over a two-year period and $500,000 for broadband planning activities over a five-year period in Hawaii, bringing the total grant award to approximately $1.9 million. The Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs is the designated entity for the state of Hawaii.

Kentucky: NTIA has awarded the Commonwealth Office of Technology approximately $1.6 million for broadband data collection and mapping activities over a two-year period and $500,000 for broadband planning activities over a five-year period in Kentucky, bringing the total grant award to nearly $2.1 million. The Office of Technology is the designated entity for the state of Kentucky.

Maine: NTIA has awarded the ConnectME Authority approximately $1.3 million for broadband data collection and mapping activities over a two-year period and nearly $440,000 for broadband planning activities over a five-year period in Maine, bringing the total grant award to nearly $1.8 million. The ConnectME Authority is the designated entity for the state of Maine.

Mississippi: NTIA has awarded the Mississippi Office of the Governor approximately $1.5 million for broadband data collection and mapping activities over a two-year period and $500,000 for broadband planning activities over a five-year period in Mississippi, bringing the total grant award to approximately $2 million. The Office of the Governor is the designated entity for the state of Mississippi.

Nebraska: NTIA has awarded the Nebraska Public Service Commission approximately $1.6 million for broadband data collection and mapping activities over a two-year period and nearly $500,000 for broadband planning activities over a two-year period in Nebraska, bringing the total grant award to approximately $2.1 million. The Public Service Commission is the designated entity for the state of Nebraska.

New Mexico: NTIA has awarded the New Mexico Department of Information Technology approximately $1.4 million for broadband data collection and mapping activities over a two-year period and $500,000 for broadband planning activities over a five-year period in New Mexico, bringing the total grant award to approximately $1.9 million. The Department of Information Technology is the designated entity for the state of New Mexico.

Oklahoma: NTIA has awarded the Oklahoma Office of State Finance approximately $1.6 million for broadband data collection and mapping activities over a two-year period and nearly $500,000 for broadband planning activities over a five-year period in Oklahoma, bringing the total grant award to approximately $2.1 million. The Office of State Finance is the designated entity for the state of Oklahoma.

Pennsylvania: NTIA has awarded the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development approximately $1.7 million for broadband data collection and mapping activities over a two-year period and $500,000 for broadband planning activities over a five-year period in Pennsylvania, bringing the total grant award to approximately $2.2 million. The Department of Community and Economic Development is the designated entity for the state of Pennsylvania.

Texas: NTIA has awarded Connected Nation approximately $2.5 million for broadband data collection and mapping activities over a two-year period and nearly $500,000 for broadband planning activities over a five-year period in Texas, bringing the total grant award to approximately $3 million. Connected Nation is the designated entity for the state of Texas.

Broadband Breakfast is a decade-old news organization based in Washington that is building a community of interest around broadband policy and internet technology, with a particular focus on better broadband infrastructure, the politics of privacy and the regulation of social media. Learn more about Broadband Breakfast.

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Ookla Has Verizon as Fastest Q1 Fixed Provider, T-Mobile Takes Top Spot for Mobile

T-Mobile was also named the most consistent mobile operator and topped 5G download speeds.

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Image of Speedtest from May 2017 by Daniel Aleksandersen used with permission

WASHINGTON, April 18, 2022 – A market report released Friday by performance metrics web service Ookla named Verizon the fastest fixed broadband provider in the U.S. during the first quarter of 2022, and T-Mobile as the fastest mobile operator during the same period.

Verizon had a median download speed of 184.36 Mbps, edging out Comcast Xfinity’s speed of 179.12 Mbps. T-Mobile’s median mobile speed was 117.83 Mbps.

Verizon had the lowest latency of all providers, according to Ookla, well ahead of Xfinity’s fourth place ranking, yet sat at third for consistency behind both Xfinity and Spectrum.

T-Mobile was also the most consistent mobile operator during the first quarter, achieving an Ookla consistency score of 88.3 percent, which along with median download speed represented an increase from the fourth quarter of 2021.

The company also achieved the fastest median 5G download speed, coming in at 191.12 Mbps.

Verizon also notably increased its 5G download speed from its Q4 metric, attributed in part to the turning on of new C-band spectrum in January following deployment delays and protest from airlines. For mobile speeds, it stood in second behind T-Mobile, bumping AT&T to a standing of third. These rankings were the same for mobile measures of latency and consistency.

Yet on 5G availability, AT&T remains ahead of Verizon.

The Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra came in as the fastest popular device in the country, running at 116.33 Mbps.

Ookla is a sponsor of Broadband Breakfast.

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FCC’s Rosenworcel: Broadband Nutrition Labels Will Create New Generation of Informed Buyers

The FCC hopes companies will make it easier for consumers to choose a broadband plan that fits their needs.

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Photo of Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel speaking at the Mobile World Conference 2022 in Barcelona

WASHINGTON, March 11, 2022 – The Federal Communications Commission’s broadband nutrition labels will usher in a new era where buyers have simple information about what they’re buying, agency Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel said Friday.

Consumers should know what they’re signing up for when they spend hundreds “or even thousands” of dollars per year for internet service. She was speaking at Friday’s commission hearing on its so-called broadband nutrition label initiative.

The hearing comes on top of a public comment period on the initiative. Many providers are pushing for more flexible regulations on compliance.

When consumers choose a broadband provider for their household, Rosenworcel said may people make decisions with “sometimes incomplete and inaccurate information.”

“The problem for broadband consumers isn’t a total lack of information, but there’s loads of fine print,” Rosenworcel said. “It can be difficult to know exactly what we are paying for and these disclosures are not consistent from carrier to carrier,” which makes comparing prices and services harder and more time-consuming for consumers.

The comments built on other recent speeches by Rosenworcel promoting the initiative, encouraging state attorneys general’s ability to enforce companies’ commitments through their states’ consumer protection statutes.

The FCC began a plan in 2015 for broadband labels that was voluntary. The new initiative directed by last year’s bipartisan infrastructure law makes this effort mandatory for broadband providers.

Matt Sayre, managing director of cross sector economic development firm Onward Eugene, said residents in rural Oregon would benefit from simple information when considering broadband providers. During a time where dial-up and satellite-based offerings were primarily available, Sayre said his neighbors “never used terms like latency or packet loss.”

“These are important aspects of good internet service, but not easily understood by most people,” Sayre said. “Citizens understood they needed better service but were uncertain about what tier of service they needed. This is where broadband labels can be very helpful.”

The hearing was the agency’s first on the initiative.

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Small ISP Organizations Push FCC for Flexibility on Broadband Label Compliance

Advocates say strict compliance requirements may economically harm small providers.

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Photo of outgoing WISPA CEO of Claude Aiken from April 2018 by New America used with permission

WASHINGTON, March 11, 2022 ­­– In comments submitted to the Federal Communications Commission Wednesday, organizations representing small internet providers are pushing for flexible regulations on compliance with a measure that requires clear reporting of broadband service aspects to consumers.

The measure was adopted at a late January meeting by the commission, mandating that providers list their pricing and speed information about services in the format of a “broadband nutrition label” that mimics a food nutrition label. Congress’ bipartisan infrastructure bill enacted in the fall required that the FCC adopt such policy.

The organizations that submitted comments Wednesday say that strict compliance requirements for the new measure may economically harm small providers.

Among those leading the charge are trade associations Wireless Internet Service Providers Association, NTCA – The Rural Broadband Association and America’s Communications Association as well as provider Lumen Technologies.

In comments, limited resources of smaller providers were cited as factors which could disadvantage them in terms of complying with the measure to the FCC’s standards and several organizations asked for small providers to be given extra time to comply.

In separate comments, internet provider Lumen said that the FCC must make multiple changes to its approach if it is to “avoid imposing new obligations that arbitrarily impose excessive costs on providers and undermine other policy goals.”

Last month, FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel said that she looks forward to increased coordination between the FCC and state attorneys general for the enforcement of the measure.

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