Monday, November 10, 2008

Getting residential broadband into distant rural areas is becoming a challenge

Peter Svensson has an important AP story “Location and broadband,” describing how broadband has gone from a luxury to practical necessity for many people, especially those who have any intention of running a small business from home. Land broadband may be essential to some work-from-home jobs (like customer service agents). The AP link is here. It is becoming more difficult to offer land-wired broadband in all rural areas.

The Pew Internet and American Life Project has an important report (PDF) “Home Broadband Adoption 2008: Adoption stalls for low-income Americans even as many users opt for premium service that give them more speed.” Pew maintains that about 55% if Americans have broadband at home now.

Wireless is an option in some areas, and satellite broadband is available in most areas, but these services tend to have lower usage limits and are sometimes less stable.

The Washington Times also offers the AP story today (Nov. 10) on the “Your Tech” column on p B3, with a diagram of how fiber-optic works.

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