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AT&T Lobbies Against Nationwide Fiber, Says 10Mbps Uploads Are Good Enough

Published by Slashdot on Tue, 30 Mar 2021


AT&T is lobbying against proposals to subsidize fiber-to-the-home deployment across the U.S., arguing that rural people don't need fiber and should be satisfied with Internet service that provides only 10Mbps upload speeds. Ars Technica reports: AT&T Executive VP Joan Marsh detailed the company's stance Friday in a blog post titled "Defining Broadband For the 21st Century." AT&T's preferred definition of 21st-century broadband could be met with wireless technology or AT&T's VDSL, a 14-year-old system that brings fiber to neighborhoods but uses copper telephone wires for the final connections into each home. "[T]here would be significant additional cost to deploy fiber to virtually every home and small business in the country, when at present there is no compelling evidence that those expenditures are justified over the service quality of a 50/10 or 100/20Mbps product," AT&T wrote. (That would be 50Mbps download speeds with 10Mbps upload speeds or 100Mbps downloads with 20Mbps uploads.) AT&T said that "overbuilding" areas that already have acceptable speeds "would needlessly devalue private investment and waste broadband-directed dollars." "Overbuilding" is what the broadband industry calls one ISP building in an area already served by another ISP, whereas Internet users desperate for cheaper, faster, and more reliable service call that "broadband competition."Read more of this story at Slashdot.
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