I’ve said it before. I’ll say it again.
The fastest way to improve an industry’s service or pricing is to introduce more competition. For the broadband industry, we’ve been watching traditional cable and DSL providers scramble to improve their offerings in areas where Google or publicly funded efforts are rolling out fiber to home internet.
AT&T has announced plans to match Google’s price and performance in areas around Kansas City. Gigabit broadband will cost $70, and combined with a basic TV package will increase that rate to $120.
It’s interesting to note that AT&T will also be courting businesses as Google currently only offers their fiber solution to residential areas. AT&T is already operating their “Gigapower” version of U-Verse in Austin, and there has been talk of expanding to more areas around the country this year. Moving to Kansas City is a clear shot at the area Google started their fiber roll out.
With Google announcing more cities on their list for gigabit internet, it would seem the broadband market might be heating up a bit, especially as cable providers like Time Warner and Comcast seem ill-equipped to offer competitive speeds and pricing compared to fiber providers.
You can read AT&T’s full press release below.
Continue reading AT&T to Match Google Fiber Speeds and Pricing in Kansas City
The problem companies face when communities lack competition for services like Internet? The community might try to roll their own.
There are laws on the books in twenty states preventing communities from building out their own public high speed and fiber broadband, but communities in Kansas and Colorado are looking to move forward on their own local offerings.
Seven cities and counties in Colorado voted during the last election to exercise an escape clause in their anti-competition legislation. All that was required was allowing a community to take a vote on the matter, and every community that put it up for a vote had it pass by a large margin. Boulder Colorado passed their measure with 84% of the voter turnout supporting it.
Continue reading Communities in Kansas and Colorado Look to Build Their Own Public Broadband Internet
Hey Google. If the rest of Kansas doesn’t want Fiber, might I suggest breaking up some of the monopolies here in Southern California? Maybe? Think about it OK?
I try not to soapbox politically too often on this site, but network infrastructure is one of my trigger topics, especially when business and politics meet preventing a level playing field and stifling competition.
The “municipal communications network and private telecommunications investment safeguards act” would seek to prevent other municipalities in Kansas from offering the same kinds of incentives Kansas City provided Google. Of course, the boilerplate goals of the bill all triumph protecting consumer interests, and providing services through “fair competition”, and letting the established ISP market decide what fair rates are for that service. Continue reading Kansas Legislature Trying to Stall Fiber Internet Outside of Kansas City?