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Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream
Everything about Broadband Policy, Network Infrastructure, Voice, Video and Data Services, Devices and Applications for Managing our Planet
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West Virginia University announces first university white space broadband trial | CivSource

West Virginia University announces first university white space broadband trial | CivSource | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

West Virginia University is the latest entrant in the rush to deploy TV White Space broadband (TVWS). TV White Space broadband relies on the use of vacant TV channels to transmit data. The university has partnered with AIR.U, the Advanced Internet Regions consortium on the project.

 

As CivSource has reported, TVWS is growing and has the backing of big players including Google and Microsoft. Trials are underway internationally, and most recently the Gigabit Libraries Network issued a national call to use libraries as hubs for the technology.

 

The initial phase of the West Virginia network provides free public Wi-Fi access for students and faculty at the Public Rapid Transit platforms, a 73-car tram system that transports more than 15,000 riders daily. This work will be separate from West Virginia’s troubled fiber broadband project which sought to expand access through anchor institutions and remains under scrutiny.

 

The network deployment is managed by AIR.U co-founder Declaration Networks Group LLC and represents a collaboration between AIR.U and the WVU Board of Governors; the West Virginia Network for Telecomputing, which provides the fiber optic Internet backhaul for the network; and Adaptrum Inc., a California start-up providing white space equipment designed to operate on vacant TV channels.

 

TVWS enables networks to broadcast Wi-Fi connections over several miles and over hilly and forested terrain. The Federal Communications Commission describes unlicensed access to vacant TV channels as enabling “Super Wi-Fi” services. For example, WVU can add additional Wi-Fi hotspots in other locations around campus where students congregate or lack connectivity today. Future applications include public Wi-Fi access on the PRT cars and machine-to-machine wireless data links supporting control functions of the PRT System. AIR.U intends to facilitate additional college community and rural broadband deployments in the future.

 

Founding partners of AIR.U include Microsoft, Google, the Open Technology Institute at the New America Foundation, the Appalachian Regional Commission, and Declaration Networks Group, LLC, a new firm established to plan, deploy and operate Super Wi-Fi networks.

 

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Way To Go Florida: Governor Signs Law That Accidentally Bans All Computers & Smartphones | Techdirt

Way To Go Florida: Governor Signs Law That Accidentally Bans All Computers & Smartphones | Techdirt | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

They must put something in the water in Florida. The latest is that the state has effectively banned all computers, tablets and smartphones. Yes, all of them. Apparently there was a hastily passed law, CS/HB 155: Prohibition of Electronic Gambling Devices, which as you might guess, is supposed to be about banning electronic gambling devices. Apparently, the bill was written quickly in response to a political controversy:

 

In April Florida Governor Rick Scott approved a ban on slot machines and Internet cafes after a charity tied to Lt. Governor Jennifer Carroll was shut down on suspicion of being an Internet gambling front -- forcing Carroll, who had consulted with the charity, to resign.


But, here's the problem. The bill's definitions section is a complete mess. You can see the full text (pdf) which contains cross outs and additions, but what comes out in the end is the following:

 

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Could the Supreme Court stop the NSA? | WonkBlog | Wash Post

Could the Supreme Court stop the NSA? | WonkBlog | Wash Post | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Every few months, the Obama administration asks the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to order Verizon (and, presumably, other phone companies) to continue turning phone calling records over to the National Security Agency. Under the rules of the FISC, Verizon’s customers—the people whose private information is being disclosed—are not allowed to challenge the orders.

 

But the Electronic Privacy Information Center, a Washington-based advocacy group, has a plan to challenge the spying program: Ask the Supreme Court to step in. Ordinarily, it takes years of litigation in lower courts before an issue can reach the nation’s highest court. But EPIC has gone straight to the top, arguing in a Monday filing that the unusual structure of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court gives victims of the NSA’s program no other choice.

 

 

The Supreme Court has the power to issue an order called a “writ of mandamus” to deal with lower courts that overstep their legal authority. This type of order is only supposed to be used in “exceptional circumstances.” But EPIC argues that the NSA’s phone records program is exactly the kind of situation that merits the Supreme Court’s intervention.

 

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Apple Conspired To Set E-Book Prices, Judge Rules | NPR

Apple Conspired To Set E-Book Prices, Judge Rules | NPR | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Apple Inc. "conspired to raise the retail price of e-books," a federal judge ruled Wednesday as a civil lawsuit brought by the Justice Department reached its conclusion.

 

As , "the U.S. sued Apple and five publishers in April 2012, claiming the maker of the iPad pushed publishers to sign agreements letting it sell digital copies of their books under what's known as the agency model. Under that model, publishers, and not retailers, set prices for each book, with Apple getting 30 percent."

 

In December 2011, news editor Sarah Weinman from Publishers Marketplace . From an "investigative body's standpoint," she noted, "just the very idea that there could be this uniform price might send up some red flags."

 

According to The Associated Press:

 

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Lessons From The Fire Island Voice Link Debacle — This Is Still A Public Utility And People Really Do Care | Tales of the Sausage Factory

Lessons From The Fire Island Voice Link Debacle — This Is Still A Public Utility And People Really Do Care | Tales of the Sausage Factory | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

We now have some preliminary data for how much Fire Island customers love Verizon using them as guinea pigs for untested services such as Voice Link. Turns out – surprise! – they totally hate it.

 

Actually, “hate” understates the matter. Forcing Fire Island residents to take Voice Link ranks up there with Microsoft Vista as “most loathed involuntary ‘upgrade’ from our monopoly provider.” Reaction has been so terrible that it likely will have ripple effects for the broader question of the whole copper-to-wireless conversion.

 

Which in some ways is a shame, because Voice Link is not intrinsically a bad idea and is not a bad product in and of itself. But a combination of disregarding the inability to support certain features as “not important” and a failure to properly introduce the product into the community has created a serious backlash on Fire Island.

 

On the plus side for our summer sitcom series That Darned Voice Link, everyone has the opportunity to learn some valuable life lessons to make things better for next time. This is, after all, the typical time in the story arc when everything hits the fan.  But if you learn the right lessons, scrappy little Voice Link can still have a the Montage of Self-Improvement, regain people’s trust, and be a successful replacement product for grouchy old Uncle Copper so he can finally retire in peace.

 

But seriously, above all else, do not use disaster victims as guinea pigs for your new product. They totally hate that.

 

More valuable life lessons on a Very Special Episode of That Darn Voice Link below . . .

 

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Verizon Ends AT&T Roaming Agreement in Montana; Rural Customers Left Without Service | Stop the Cap!

Verizon Ends AT&T Roaming Agreement in Montana; Rural Customers Left Without Service | Stop the Cap! | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Verizon Wireless customers and public safety personnel are upset that the cell phone company was caught unprepared after a rural roaming agreement with AT&T expired at the end of June, leaving police officers without communications and others with no way to reach 911.

 

AT&T no longer permits Verizon Wireless customers to roam on its acquired former Alltel network, which has dramatically reduced service in Geraldine, Absarokee, Ft. Benton, Browning, Harlem, Evaro, Cascade, Stanford, Lincoln, Ennis, Virginia City, and Great Falls.

 

Lincoln resident Gayle Steinch is living with the result of that business decision. She has a single bar of service on her Verizon Wireless cellphone at her house. It is her only phone — she dropped landline service in 2007.

“And I live a half a block off the main street,” she told the Great Falls Tribune.

 

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Vancouver, BC: A city with two gigabit Internet ISPs, and neither one is Google Fiber | Ars Technica

Vancouver, BC: A city with two gigabit Internet ISPs, and neither one is Google Fiber | Ars Technica | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Gigabit Internet service is popping up in all sorts of places, from Google Fiber in Kansas City to major cities like Seattle and even a rural part of Vermont.

 

But a city with two gigabit Internet service is a rare thing indeed. That's just what Vancouver, British Columbia, is becoming, with a startup called OneGigabit now launching to compete against Shaw, a Canadian ISP that already offers gigabit speed in parts of Vancouver, Calgary, and Edmonton.

 

Shaw sells gigabit speed to "small pockets" of Vancouver and 250Mbps in other parts of the city for $115 per month, a CBC News article said. OneGigabit will charge just $45 to $65 a month, company founder Eric Kuhnke told CBC, but it will take a while to roll out, and availability will be limited mostly to apartment and condominium complexes.

 

"To be frank, it's uneconomical to serve a single client, with the construction costs that are involved to run fiber to one particular tenant to the building," Kuhnke told CBC.

 

OneGigabit launched the service on June 24. While wiring up individual homes would be too costly for OneGigabit, the company explains on its website that it is "working in partnership with local real estate development firms, outside plant cabling contractors, and telecommunications industry professionals" to serve "the vast majority of MDUs (multiple dwelling units)" in Vancouver.

 

Service will be available for apartment and condo buildings within 20 kilometers of downtown, OneGigabit says. Buildings might need retrofits and upgrades, but OneGigabit said it "assists property owners or strata boards with the process and costs involved."

 

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NH: Grant-funded area broadband project approaching completion | The Keene Sentinel

A project to bring high-speed Internet to rural homes and businesses in the region is nearly complete, despite delays that set the finish date back by six months.

 

N.H. FastRoads expects to have its nearly 250-mile fiber network in operation by the end of this year. A handful of businesses and residents are testing the network, which will run from Orford to Rindge, this week and next week.

 

The $7.7 million project had a deadline of July 1, but Executive Director Carole D. Monroe said complications during the construction phase, particularly with the time-consuming process of attaching FastRoads equipment to utility poles, slowed the project.

 

FastRoads is a collaboration among the N.H. Community Development Finance Authority, Monadnock Economic Development Corp. and more than 30 communities in the Monadnock and Upper Valley regions.

 

The project is about 95 percent finished with building its “middle mile” network that runs fiber-optic cable through 235 hubs, including schools, hospitals and municipal buildings down the western side of the state.

 

FastRoads will not connect individual customers to the Internet through the “middle mile” network. Instead, the 161 miles of fiber will act much like a highway, connecting local networks with the broader infrastructure so small, rural towns have access to the same broadband as more populated areas. Service providers could then directly connect homes and businesses.

 

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How to stop AT&T from selling your private data to advertisers | BGR.com

How to stop AT&T from selling your private data to advertisers | BGR.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Reports from earlier this week suggested that AT&T is ready to follow in its rivals’ footsteps and begin selling the private usage data it collects from its subscribers’ phones to advertisers. The data in question is anonymized, according to AT&T, but it includes very sensitive information such as customers’ locations, Web browsing history, mobile app usage and more.

 

Privacy is something of a hot button issue right now, so it is likely that a number of AT&T subscribers would prefer to not have their private data sold to advertisers. Luckily, there is a fast and easy way to opt out of AT&T’s “External Marketing and Analytics Reporting” program, and complete instructions follow below.

 

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Massachusetts Municipalities Share IT Infrastructure in the Cloud | GovTech.com

Massachusetts Municipalities Share IT Infrastructure in the Cloud | GovTech.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

What may seem like the neighborly thing to do is actually a practice that can help cities save money on IT services: sharing.

 

When Melrose, Mass., moved forward with an IT infrastructure upgrade and data center consolidation in 2010 after receiving grant funding from the state, the city developed a scalable model to allow other cities to share its multi-tenant cloud platform.

 

Pushing for regionalized IT services would not only generate revenue for the city, but also make Melrose a more attractive candidate for additional grant funding, said city CIO Jorge Pazos.

 

“We were trying to consolidate our own stuff and create opportunities that we didn’t currently have at that point in time,” Pazos said.

 

And so far, the effort has shown that multiple municipalities can operate IT services on shared infrastructure, effectively driving down costs for each participant.

 

To develop a proof of concept, Melrose first tapped the town of Essex, just 26 miles away on the north shore of Massachusetts, to provide infrastructure as a service with a revamped platform consisting of Cisco's Unified Computing System, with blade servers.

 

Essex Administrator Brendhan Zubricki said the town was already interested in outsourcing its IT services to another municipality and began the process in 2011.

 

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AT&T U-verse to challenge Comcast in Mississippi town | FierceCable.com

AT&T U-verse to challenge Comcast in Mississippi town | FierceCable.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

 

Comcast will face new competition from AT&T's U-verse TV in Hattiesburg, Miss., after the city council approved a cable franchise for the telco on Tuesday.

 

While Verizon has halted new construction for its FiOS TV service, AT&T said it plans to expand its U-verse footprint. The company didn't say when it plans to begin selling U-verse TV and Internet in Hattiesburg.

 

AT&T gained 232,000 U-verse TV and a record 731,000 U-verse Internet subscribers in the first quarter. It's scheduled to release second-quarter earnings on July 23.

 

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ACA to FCC: Levy Regulatory Fees on Non-Cable MVPDs | Broadcasting & Cable

The American Cable Association wants the FCC to apply its regulatory fees to telco and satellite video distributors, ACA said in comments to the FCC on Monday.

ACA says IPTV providers are sufficiently similar to cable services that they should be assessed similar regulatory fees. It also says that would avoid "distortions in the marketplace" when a competitor does not have to pay regulatory fees levied on others.

ACA says the FCC should continue to charge on a per-sub basis -- ACA represents smaller systems with fewer subs -- and wants satellite providers to have to pay in on the same, per-sub, basis as cable operators rather than per satellite-license. "This much-needed regulatory reform will ensure regulatory parity between cable operators and DBS providers," ACA says. "The Commission has ample authority to undertake this reform given the regulation and benefits that DBS providers receive from the Media Bureau."

 

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Cable Wi-Fi on a Hot Streak | Light Reading

Cable Wi-Fi on a Hot Streak | Light Reading | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

 

If you thought U.S. cable operators had already deployed lots of Wi-Fi hotspots, you ain't seen nothin' yet.

 

That's one of the conclusions of a recent report from Heavy Reading, which predicts that cable hotspot growth will continue apace as MSOs scramble to extend their broadband networks wirelessly, add more value to their cable packages and guard against potential encroachment by over-the-top (OTT) video players.

 

The Heavy Reading Cable Industry Insider report, From Wired to Wireless: Cable Uses Wi-Fi to Extend Its Reach, projects that the U.S. cable industry will deploy more than 250,000 Wi-Fi hotspots by mid-2014, an increase of more than 60 percent on the current installed base.

 

The report also estimates that the cable industry has already sunk more than $175 million in capital expenditures into deploying Wi-Fi hotspots during the past couple of years. Heavy Reading expects that total to double to more than $350 million by mid-2014 as the deployment pace picks up further.

 

"Wi-Fi has given cable a vital entry point into wireless," said Craig Leddy, a Heavy Reading contributing analyst who authored the report, in an emailed response to questions. "We found that the major MSOs are aggressively deploying hotspots and we expect that their role in wireless will continue to grow. For wired service providers, wireless has become an imperative."

 

Indeed, just in the past month, Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Cox Communications have all announced aggressive new deployments of Wi-Fi in their service territories.

 

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In Case of Emergency: My Cellphone Knows What to Do | NYTimes.com

In Case of Emergency: My Cellphone Knows What to Do | NYTimes.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

I am lucky. I’ve never been in a disaster or in a situation where I worried about my survival. Perhaps that’s because I have lived in safe places and not tried too many risky activities. When my wife was a girl, though, she had to call a mountain rescue team after getting lost in difficult weather. Back then, she had to rely on her wits and a basic cellphone to call for help. Now, when emergencies or disasters strike, smartphone apps can offer detailed assistance.

 

The American Red Cross has an app that can alert you to common natural disasters so you can prepare in advance. The free Earthquake app for iOS or Android, for instance, has a main page with a big “alert” button that brings up information on global earthquake activity or notifies you about areas you have programmed in. This makes it handy for warnings about your own location or that of a relative living elsewhere. If an alert is issued, your phone can inform you automatically. The app’s “prepare” menu tells you what to do when you get an alert, during an earthquake and immediately after. If you are inside a building, for example, it will tell you to “drop, cover and hold on.” The sections are clearly written and easy to follow.

 

This app and its peers are specific to one disaster type — there’s also one for tornadoes, one for hurricanes, another for wildfires and more. This means if you live in an area vulnerable to more than one kind of natural disaster, you may have to set up several apps.

 

Among apps that can help you deal with a medical emergency, one of the most comprehensive is the $2 iOS app Army First Aid. This app contains information on a wide range of first aid situations, including injuries, shock and snake bites. It is set up in chapters, like a book, and each section is written in plain English and illustrated.

 

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NY & NJ : No more landlines on Fire Island? Verizon seeks to go wireless | Alaska Dispatch

Last October, Hurricane Sandy struck the shores of New York and New Jersey, upending houses and their inhabitants. Wireless providers scrambled to get service back to the storm-torn areas. On outlying islands along the New York and New Jersey coast, underground phone lines had been washed away.

 

Nearly eight months later, nearly all of the storm-affected areas are well on their way to rebuilding, and cell phone reception has long since been restored. But, residents of Fire Island– a barrier island off the New York coast– still do not have their landlines restored, and they might ever get them back.

 

Verizon Communications filed an application with the Federal Communications Commission to discontinue landline service in “certain parts of New Jersey and New York affected by Hurricane Sandy,” most notably on Fire Island. Instead of restoring the old copper wire networks in the tiny community, the telecom provider has proposed offering its wireless communication service: Voice Link.

 

In May, Verizon received approval from the New York Public Service Commission to introduce the use of wireless technology– Voice Link– as an alternative to landlines.

 

Voice Link uses a compact box that plugs into a power outlet and provides a phone connection via the Verizon wireless network. The device can also run off of batteries for 36 hours with two hours of talk time.

 

Before Hurricane Sandy hit, there was a system of copper phone lines. But the storm washed away the phone lines, and it does not seem cost effective to restore the copper system, says Tom Maguire, Verizon’s senior vice president of national operations.

 

There are approximately 250 permanent residents on Fire Island, which is a popular tourist destination for New Yorkers during the summer. Mr. Maguire estimates that the cost per person of restoring copper lines to the island would cost about $17,000 per person, about $5 million in total.

 

Considering that fewer people are using landlines than ever before, Maguire says that restoring an increasingly archaic service doesn’t seem to add up. “A dollar I spend on copper is a dollar I don’t get to spend on new technologies,” Maguire explains.

 

But Wireless networks “just don’t provide the performance” that landlines do, says Professor John Cioffi a professor emeritus at Stanford University. (Mr. Cioffi is also the Chief Executive Officer of ASSAI Broadband Company). A wireless network is prone to overloading: “once you get enough traffic, it will come crashing down,” he says. Eighty percent of US mobile data is offloaded to WiFi networks right now that rely on cables.

 

“There is a hugely important public safety concern,” says Christopher Sterling, a professor at George Washington University and author of “ A History of Technology, Policy, and Economics.” Mr. Sterling worries about what will happen during an emergency when there is high stress on wireless networks. “When something occurs and everybody reaches for the phone, the wireless lines very quickly fill up and you can’t get through,” Sterling says.

 

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Tennessee Town Tullahoma Tells us Why They Built a Network - Community Broadband Bits Episode #54 | community broadband networks

Tennessee Town Tullahoma Tells us Why They Built a Network - Community Broadband Bits Episode #54 | community broadband networks | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

For our 54th episode of the Community Broadband Bits podcast, we are back in Tennessee to interview Brian Skelton, General Manager of the Tullahoma Utilities Board. They built the network in 2008 and have weathered the tough economy, meeting the business plan while greatly benefiting the community.

 

This is a particularly content-rich interview, covering the importance of non-gimmick pricing, benefits to schools, local programming, and why they decided to become a gigabit community.

 

They haven't increased prices of the Internet or telephone service even though they have increased speeds five times for subscribers and added new telephone features. Despite facing tough competition and deep discount pricing, Tullahoma has experienced extremely low churn, which itself is a sign of how valued the service is. You can read our historic coverage of Tullahoma here.

 

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SoftBank will invest $16B in Sprint, open R&D center in Silicon Valley | FierceWireless.com

SoftBank will invest $16B in Sprint, open R&D center in Silicon Valley | FierceWireless.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son said that is company is planning to invest $16 billion in Sprint over the next two years.  In an interview with Japanese news service Nikkei, Son said that SoftBank wants to make Sprint a more serious challenger for its rivals AT&T and Verizon Wireless, which each have nearly twice as many customers as Sprint.

 The two companies will also open a joint R&D center in California as early as this year. That center will draw engineers from both companies and will work on both hardware and software, Son said. Eventually, he expects the R&D center to house about 1,000 engineers.

 

Son said he will chair the new Sprint's board of directors. Ronald Fisher, who now heads Softbank's U.S. operations will serve as deputy chairman.  In addition, four current Sprint directors, including CEO Dan Hesse will remain on the board.

 

In previous interviews, Son has indicated Sprint will maintain its unlimited smartphone data pricing, but also hinted more changes could come.


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Broadband is Everywhere and Yet Some Say “Bad News!” | Cable Tech Talk

Broadband is Everywhere and Yet Some Say “Bad News!” | Cable Tech Talk | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The build-out of a national broadband infrastructure across 93 percent of America is among the most important U.S. technology accomplishments in recent history.  Just consider the sheer size of the U.S., spanning some 3.8 million square miles across farm fields, massive cities, mountain ranges and vast spaces.

 

A recent White House report, Four Years of Broadband Growth, highlighted some of the tremendous progress that cable and other broadband providers have made to build next-generation networks that are enabling Americans to compete in the global information economy. The report notes that, “Since 2009, the percentage of American homes reached by high-speed broadband networks have more than quadrupled…and average broadband speeds have doubled.”

 

The good news is that America’s broadband future is even brighter. During a recent cable innovations event, some of the foremost leaders in broadband technology got together to envision what’s on the horizon for broadband Internet in America.

 

NCTA President and CEO, Michael Powell, reviewed how cable providers had invested $200 billion to build out a national high-speed Internet infrastructure, which now passes 85 percent of U.S. homes with networks capable of 100 Mbps speeds or higher. Comcast CEO Brian Roberts highlighted the potential power within cable’s current network, by demonstrating how cutting-edge electronics can be used to reach three Gbps download speeds. And cable’s chief innovation guru, CableLabs CEO Phil McKinney, offered a glimpse of the not-too-distant future in discussing the industry’s progress toward completing the specification for the next iteration of faster cable technology,  which is expected to enable downstream speeds approaching 10 Gbps.

 

In spite of the continuous broadband improvement cycle that cable has been delivering across wide swaths of America, some to try and make lemons out of lemonade. Critics say cable is holding back on speed and infrastructure improvements and often cite Google as an example of how broadband should be deployed to American homes.

 

Let’s look at Google’s efforts in creating a broadband infrastructure and see how they compare to those of cable.

 

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How to Watch Sports Anywhere, Any Time | Cable Tech Talk

How to Watch Sports Anywhere, Any Time | Cable Tech Talk | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

When it comes to enjoying the second screen experience – that is, using social media platforms or live viewing apps on your smartphone or tablet while watching TV – live sports offer the ultimate way to watch.

 

The very nature of sports makes it ideal for social media and TV-everywhere apps. Best of all, many of these apps are paired with your cable subscription. For those, you can log in with the username and password from your cable operator and watch live. All of the apps we’ve featured are available on all Apple and Android mobile devices.

 

So download the apps and laugh in the face of scheduling conflicts, delayed planes, and long meetings. Thanks to the tech, you’re not missing a single serve (or homer, or power-play, or touchdown…)

 

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This is what the Future of TV Looks Like | Cable Tech Talk

This is what the Future of TV Looks Like | Cable Tech Talk | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

During a recent keynote address, Brian Roberts, Chairman & CEO of Comcast Corporation, delivered a staggering demonstration of mega broadband speed, a new mini-sized cable box, and a slick, super intuitive TV menu interface dubbed X2.

 

Roberts, while being interviewed by CNBC’s Becky Quick, was asked whether there was a need for Gigabit broadband. Roberts responded, “I hope so!” And with that, kicked off a demo presentation by showing a blazing download of a 4 Gigabyte file of a 4K TV clip. The download bar was moving so quickly and on screen for such a short period of time, it was barely possible to take a picture. He then switched the demo screen to a speed test and revealed the speed he was utilizing to download through the cable network was over 3 Gbps. It was an impressive display to say the least.

 

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DirecTV, Time Warner Cable Moving in On Hulu; Online Video Rights & Internet Cable TV | Stop the Cap!

DirecTV, Time Warner Cable Moving in On Hulu; Online Video Rights & Internet Cable TV | Stop the Cap! | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Time Warner Cable won’t engage in an expensive bidding war for ownership of Hulu so it is trying to convince the online video venture’s current owners not to sell.

 

Sources tell Bloomberg News the cable company has offered to buy a minority stake in the online video streaming service alongside its current owners, which include Comcast-NBC, Fox Broadcasting, and Walt Disney-ABC.

 

If Hulu accepted the offer, the other bidders’ offers may not even be entertained.

 

Among those filing binding bids/proposals with Hulu as of the July 5 deadline:

 

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AT&T: Oh Yeah, By The Way We're Selling Your Location Data - But Don't Worry, We're Really Committed to Privacy | DSLReports.com

Both Verizon and AT&T haven't much wanted to really talk about the billions they're now making by selling your location data, given said data likely isn't as secure or anonymous as companies promise, and neither want new privacy protections put in place. Years after establishing a framework for collecting and selling user location data, AT&T has now kindly seen fit to update their privacy policy, in a blog post (via Fierce Wireless) promising users that there's no way this data collection could possibly go wrong, because said data is anonymous:

 

"This is data that can’t be tracked back to you individually. Here’s an easy example: After an election in your community, officials will release the final vote tally. They might say that 60 percent of the voters picked Candidate A and 40 percent picked Candidate B. That information is a type of aggregate and anonymous data. It’s “aggregate” because it combines information for the whole community telling you who the community as a whole voted for, and it is anonymous because the data doesn’t tell you who voted for which candidate."

 

Said data is being sold to everyone from civil engineers to marketing firms, except as studies have recently shown, that data isn't really anonymous, and it only takes a few additional contextual clues to identify users. Not to worry, though, because AT&T promises that you're in control of this whole thing, and they won't sell a shred of data unless you approve of it:

 

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Will Cox go over the top of fellow cable MSOs with FlareWatch? | FierceCable.com

No major cable operator has ever challenged a fellow MSO by overbuilding cable systems like AT&T, Verizon or RCN. But Cox Communications could be laying the groundwork to use the Internet to market subscription video programming to cable subscribers nationwide with its new FlareWatch service.


I might've buried the lead in a feature we posted Tuesday afternoon about some cable operators embracing the idea of supplying subscribers with over-the-top video devices like Roku and the challenges cable subscribers face in using a TiVo Premiere DVR to watch Netflix on TV. The piece mentions FlareWatch, a package of 97 cable networks that Cox is delivering to subscribers in Orange County, Calif., and notes that the MSO isn't yet offering Netflix through the Internet video service.

 

The "aha!" moment came last night when I signed up for a 30-day trial for MyFlare, a photo storage and sharing service that Cox unveiled with little fanfare in April. MyFlare is similar to Dropbox, in that users can have photos taken on an iPhone automatically uploaded to cloud-based servers, and both services charge $9.99 monthly for 100 GB of storage space. But MyFlare makes it easier for users to post photos on Facebook and Twitter.

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6 Figures to Note in GAO’s Video Competition Report | CableFax Portal

6 Figures to Note in GAO’s Video Competition Report | CableFax Portal | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The Government Accountability Office released its 40-page report on video competition this week, concluding that competition has expanded among distributors and that the FCC should study whether to change the frequency of its annual price and video competition reports.

 

Sprinkled inside were some stats and figures that the industry should bookmark.

 

Click headline to read the highlights and access hot link to download the GAO report:

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Report: 86% of In-Home Broadband Usage Will Be on WiFi By 2017 | TeleCompetitor.com

Report: 86% of In-Home Broadband Usage Will Be on WiFi By 2017 | TeleCompetitor.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

In a new study, wireless and mobile communications market strategy consultancy iGR forecasts that WiFi devices will account for 86% of broadband data use in U.S. households in 2017. In-home data, in turn, will drive growing data usage outside the home, a matter of interest and importance for wireless and mobile industry participants across the value chain, iGR notes.

 

“In-home data usage is a precursor to outside-the-home usage. If a user gets accustomed to streaming music over an in-home cable / WiFi network, then that same user is likely to stream their music when they step outside the home,” iGR founder and president Iain Gillott, commented in a press release. “Today’s users expect a world in which they always have high-speed access to anything they want – cloud music, cloud information, etc. Internet and data access is inextricably woven into the personal, social and business fabric of modern life,” iGR continued. Click headline to read more-- 

 

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