Broadband Bites: Biden signs infrastructure bill with historic broadband investment
Also in today's broadband roundup: UK plans infrastructure assessment; Vodafone and CityFibre take the next step; US Senate schedules Rosenworcel hearing.
- Putting an end to years of Infrastructure Week, President Biden today signed the bipartisan $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill, including $65 billion for broadband. Following a ceremony attended by members of Congress, cabinet secretaries, governors, mayors, business leaders and union workers, Biden signed the legislation, calling it "a monumental step forward to 'build back better' as a nation." Kicking off the signing ceremony, Donneta Williams, a union worker who makes optical fiber at a Corning plant in Wilmington, North Carolina, called out the bill's broadband provision for closing the digital divide and for spurring the economy: "This is not just an investment in broadband, but in jobs at Corning where I make fiber," she said. (For more on what's in the bill and how it will be implemented, see US House passes Biden's infrastructure bill with $65B for broadband and Commerce Sec promises Fed oversight on state broadband plans.)
- Speaking of infrastructure, the UK government's National Infrastructure Commission released a list of topics that will be on its next major assessment of the country's infrastructure, to be published in early 2023, including an update on its full-fiber goals. Keeping with the UK's Project Gigabit program, which aims to make 1Gbit/s networks available to at least 85% of UK premises by the end of 2025, the National Infrastructure Commission is looking ahead to adoption with its next report, saying it will "consider barriers that are preventing the adoption of new digital technologies in infrastructure, and what policy and regulatory interventions may be needed." (See BT CEO predicts UK fiber victory but still unsure of final score.)
- CityFibre and Vodafone declared last week that they would deepen their relationship, with Vodafone extending its wholesale partnership with the UK service provider. According to a press release, the deal "increases Vodafone's commitments from 12 to 285 cities, towns and villages" and establishes Vodafone as the UK's largest provider of full fiber. As Paolo Pescatore, a tech, media and telco analyst at PP Foresight, told Light Reading, if this partnership delivers as intended, "then it could be seen that Vodafone is setting the pace when it comes to availability of full fibre in more places." (See Vodafone sets course for UK's largest full-fiber player.)
- Back in the US, with the infrastructure legislation finally signed, the next step on the road toward implementation includes the crucial confirmation of President Biden's nominees for the FCC and NTIA. The US Senate has scheduled the first of those, Jessica Rosenworcel's confirmation hearing for FCC commissioner and chairwoman, for this Wednesday, November 17. (See Biden finally moves on vacant FCC and NTIA posts and Where Biden's FCC pick Gigi Sohn stands on broadband.)
— Nicole Ferraro, site editor, Broadband World News; senior editor, global broadband coverage, Light Reading. Host of "The Divide" on the Light Reading Podcast
(Home page image via The White House on Flickr.)
Charter tells FCC that 'timely and non-discriminatory access' to utility poles is critical for RDOF buildouts. Meanwhile, Charter and an electrical co-op don't see eye-to-eye on a pole-related issue that has surfaced in Kentucky.
Performance data from Comlinkdata/Tutela indicate that T-Mobile Home Broadband and Starlink are as good as VDSL, stomp on DSL, but generally fall short of terrestrial HFC and fiber services.
Competition, depressed household formation, government stimulus dollars and the saturation of broadband penetration are all affecting the rate of broadband subscriber growth, says MoffettNathanson analyst Craig Moffett.
Launched in parts of northern New England, the new brand offering features symmetrical 1-Gig service starting at $70 per year paired with a whole-home Wi-Fi platform powered by Plume.
Big US cable provider reports that 13.3% of customers who can get it now take 1-Gig service, with 46% of new high-speed data subs signing up for it in Q3. Those numbers translate to 580,000 gig customers.
More Industry Announcements
- Konnect Africa, Vodacom to bring broadband to Tanzania's unserved
Thursday, December 2, 2021
- FBA announces call for speakers and program for Fiber Connect 2022
Thursday, December 2, 2021
- Virgin Media O2 connects entire Scotland network to gigabit broadband
Wednesday, December 1, 2021
- Allo to build 10 Gbit/s network in five more Nebraska communities
Tuesday, November 30, 2021
- Neos Networks completes major stage of expansion program
Tuesday, November 30, 2021
- CityFibre launches 800 Gbit/s backbone ring
Wednesday, November 24, 2021
- FCC commits additional $169M to Emergency Connectivity Fund
Tuesday, November 23, 2021
Wednesday, October 6, 2021
11:00 a.m. New York / 4:00 p.m. London
The demand for high-speed broadband services and hyperconnectivity has driven massive surges in network data usage like never before. Due to this trend, the networks of communications service providers (CSPs) are increasingly overburdened. Service providers need to optimize their networks to scale service delivery efficiently, while maximizing the opportunity to innovate at a rapid pace.
Learn how cloud-native containerized solutions can position CSP networks for long-term evolution and sustainable growth. Hear practical steps and flexible options for implementing a cloud-native PON solution in your network. Discover how to maximize operational resources and make way for enhanced applications, innovations and new use cases.
Topics to be covered include:
- How to implement cloud-native containerized PON
- The convergence of fiber and mobile networks