Govtech reports that “Seattle is thinking about leasing some of the city’s 500 miles of unused dark fiber to private companies, hoping that ultra-fast broadband connections will result.” The most important word in that sentence is “hoping”. Why? Because getting each home and business in Seattle to have access to fiber optic broadband connections will take more, much more, than leasing dark fiber to broadband companies.
It is true that a city which leases its dark fiber to service providers for a low fee will lower the cost for these service providers, allowing the latter to offer lower cost higher speed broadband service. However, it does not address the cost of the last mile or literally, the last hundred meters. What is to be done about that? Digging up streets and sidewalks is very expensive, but using the fiber network as backhaul and utilizing wireless as the “last mile” has proven to be successful. Case in point: Webpass in San Francisco.
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