SPRINGFIELD, Illinois, and WASHINGTON, February 25, 2010 – The Partnership for a Connected Illinois, a non-profit organization that includes partnerships with Southern Illinois University, Man-Tra-Con, and Connected Nation, on Thursday announced Drew Clark as its new Executive Director.
On Wednesday, PCI also unveiled BroadbandStat, a new interactive mapping tool for viewing and analyzing broadband data.
Clark, the founder of BroadbandCensus.com and an experienced, independent telecom industry analyst, brings a unique public interest perspective to broadband data collection, which is vital to the effective deployment of high-speed internet networks throughout the United States.
“I’m glad that our team of broadband experts is moving forward to help achieve the ambitious vision for a public, transparent map of technology infrastructure that President Obama and I share,” said Governor Pat Quinn. A long-time advocate of improving broadband access in Illinois, Governor Quinn has worked with public and private partners over many years to ensure connectivity in all areas.
As the state’s designated entity to perform broadband mapping, the Partnership for a Connected Illinois (PCI) recently received $1.8 million in funding from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration for broadband data collection, mapping and planning activities. In 2009, led by Southern Illinois University, PCI received a start-up grant from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.
“The Partnership for a Connected Illinois is a direct outgrowth of the highly successful endeavor in southern Illinois to use broadband deployment as the foundation to a broader economic development strategy,” said Dr. Glenn Poshard, President of Southern Illinois University.
“This undertaking has been an all-in commitment by the region’s leaders in health care, education and business, working together to unleash the job creation potential of high speed Internet access,” he said. “We have every expectation that the accomplishments achieved by this unique public-private partnership in southern Illinois can be recreated throughout the state. Southern Illinois University welcomes Mr. Clark on board and we look forward to participating in this exciting phase of the project.”
Clark will be based in Springfield, Illinois, and will work throughout the state to ensure every community in Illinois is connected to world-class, high-speed information and communication networks. The broadband mapping efforts to be undertaken by PCI will help identify and drive both broadband supply and demand.
“The enthusiasm for broadband is palpable in Illinois,” said Clark. “The Partnership for a Connected Illinois has the opportunity to lead the nation by building a common-sense approach to data collection and deployment that maximizes broadband’s benefit for citizens, business, schools, libraries and health care providers.”
BroadbandStat is a user-friendly, web-based tool for local leaders, policymakers, consumers and technology providers to plan for the expansion and adoption of broadband. On Wednesday, Connected Nation hosted a webinar introducing BroadbandStat to all interested parties, free of charge.
“We are extremely pleased with the selection of Drew Clark as the Executive Director of the Partnership for a Connected Illinois,” said Ron Duncan, President of the Board of Directors of PCI. “He has a unique set of experiences and capabilities that make him extremely well suited for this leadership role.”
Continuing Work of Broadband Census LLC
Clark founded Broadband Census LLC in December 2007 as a means of providing the public with an objective and independent measure of broadband speeds, prices, availability, reliability and competition. Both the data and journalistic activities of Broadband Census LLC will continue.
As BroadbandBreakfast.com, Broadband Census News publishes reports on broadband stimulus, wireless broadband, and the national broadband plan. Heading up the editorial team at BroadbandBreakfast.com is Sharon McLoone.
McLoone has been a journalist for 20 years, with most of her work focusing on technology, business and politics. Her work has appeared in CNN Money, The New York Times, The Washington Post and Science, as well as smaller, more specialized publications. Just prior to beginning with BroadbandBreakfast.com, She worked as a business reporter at WashingtonPost.com and as an editor at a National Journal publication covering politics and policy of interest to the high-tech and media communities.
Also assuming a leadership role at the company is Sylvia Syracuse, Director of Marketing and Sponsorship. Syracuse manages the Broadband Breakfast Club, the popular Washington discussion group that now meets on the third Tuesday of each month at Clyde’s of Gallery Place in Washington.
Syracuse has had a long career in non-profit development and administration, and has raised funds for technology and science education, and managed a project on health information exchange by the State of New York. Her experience in community education and development also allows her to understand the community needs and infrastructure required to make broadband access effective.
On the data side, Broadband Census Data conducts independent validation at the Census block level (or smaller, if desired) of carrier-submitted broadband data. The broadband availability maps created by BroadbandCensus.com use no fewer than two and as many as five independent sources for validation.
Sources include: wireline footprints from publicly-citable sources, wireless footprints from radio-frequency propagation tools, carrier data, market survey data, and user-generated data. Various lists are used to validate data for speed, price, availability, technology and provider information to specific areas.
Working in collaboration with our partner Brian Webster Consulting, BroadbandCensus.com can perform an inclusive broadband availability study and prepare broadband availability coverage maps that can be released under a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial License. The data is provided in all the popular GIS file formats.
Current broadband availability maps include wireless and wireline provider (cable and telco) footprints. Members of our team conducted the data and mapping services used to complete the grant application process for American Recovery and Reinventment Act Round 1 grant winners Rivada Sea Lion in Alaska, and the North Florida Broadband Authority.
In addition to maps, the data can be used to show and tabulate the availability, speed and adoption for specific areas. This is provided in electronic report form. This information can be used to support Broadband Technology Opportunities Program and Broadband Infrastructure Program applications.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Small ISP Organizations Push FCC for Flexibility on Broadband Label Compliance
Advocates say strict compliance requirements may economically harm small providers.
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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