WSRL.ORG / Fiber & The Government - June 2013 - Revised September 2013 - Page 1
Have we learned anything yet? The backdrop for this page is the known past and present incompetence of government and the unbelievable greed of telco corporations.
Telco Greed, Government Incompetence - From 2007
Is Anything Better Today? -
Not much by my measure. The latest government effort to solve all our access problems. The map provided by the State can be found here. Looking at the providers list to the right and throwing out all speeds less than 6 Mbps (which you will never see anyway) you are left with three providers. Throw out Hughes satellite service because the delay through the satellite is greater than 0.25 seconds (plus ground station delays) and makes voice communications nearly impossible. That leaves JAB and TDS (Delta County Telecom). Forget TDS because their entire delivery network (RT/UA to the customer) is wireline based. The figures given for TDS are a big lie. As covered in the fiber index page, metallic wire-line cabling is nearly useless for high speed rural delivery because of pair cross talk issues and the distances involved. That leaves JAB (point to multipoint microwave) which I use. I'm about 4000 feet from their nearest AP and subscribe to the highest speed they can deliver. I'm lucky to get 4.5 Mbps (actual speeds links to the right) and top out around 5.5 Mbps. So, there you have it. The map provided by the State is basically a pack of lies (at least in my case).
New Satellite Launch 8/2013 -
For desperate rural users there is a new option. The Story is here. For those who can view video an actual demonstration can be viewed here. Watch out for caps and speeds to drop due to over subscription of services. This service doesn't hold a candle to fiber where the elite 1 Gig club continues to grow monthly. Still, for rural users dealing with dead-beat, do nothing telcos., this could spell some relief. Also, consider the effects of solar activity on satellite Internet. In comparison, fiber optics is totally unaffected by solar activity.
The USF Factor -
USF stands for Universal Service Fund or Universal Service Support Mechanisms. A description of the USF function can be found here. At the State level it's called the High Cost Support Mechanism. Administration of the fund is the responsibility of the Colorado PUC. The not so easy to find annual report can be found here. Why is any of this important to fiber optics? This fund dumps $millions of dollars into the telcos that are suppose to be delivering fiber based services to rural customers but are not. In my view, as long as the telcos continue to be awarded these $millions of dollars in support of delivering totally inferior and inappropriate services, nothing is going to change. Of course the SB 05-152 fiasco also helps the telcos dupe the public. What really makes me mad is, even though I totally refuse to in any way support or use local telco services, USF charges get added on to my distant provider bill without my permission or approval.
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