& cplSiteName &

Adtran Launches 'Gig Communities' Initiative

Carol Wilson
8/13/2014
50%
50%

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. -- Adtran is launching a national initiative around gigabit services, targeting municipalities, utility companies, and cable operators, in addition to the telco audience it has traditionally served. Focusing on the economic development benefits of high-speed Internet access and the benefits to schools and hospitals, the networking equipment maker is pledging to have 50 gigabit communities up and running this year and 200 in 2015.

One of its Gig Communities customers, C Spire , is hoping to raise the economic profile of much of Mississippi, in an ambitious effort that is directly copying Google Fiber Inc. 's approach to creating "fiberhoods" and getting local municipal engagement. (See C-Spire, Adtran Team on Mississippi Gig Network.)

Speaking to a group of analysts and press assembled here at Adtran Inc. (Nasdaq: ADTN)'s headquarters on Tuesday, Adtran VP of Global Marketing Gary Bolton said the effort would include a Gigabit Communities website with resources and case studies for interested parties to use in planning their own gigabit network effort.

Jay Wilson, SVP and general manager of Adtran's Carrier Networks Division, said the company is already working with hundreds of entities, including many of its traditional smaller telco customers, on targeted efforts to bring gigabit services via fiber-to-the-premises into communities that otherwise might struggle economically, in hopes of attracting and retaining new businesses.


Get the latest updates on the Gigabit Cities trend by visiting Light Reading's Broadband/FTTx content channel.


The Adtran effort is not without risk. Bolton cited the positive impact that the gigabit network in Chattanooga, Tenn., has had on that area, attracting new businesses to the area and prompting concern even in Huntsville itself about the loss of potential business. The EPB Fiber Optics effort has been controversial politically, however, as larger carriers such as AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) have fought to get laws in place in Tennessee and other states to prohibit or severely limit the ability of municipalities to build fiber networks using public money or bonds. (See Muni Utilities Take Gigabit Fight to FCC.)

"We're technology guys and that's a policy issue," Bolton said in response to a question on the possible negative response from Adtran's telco customers. "We are not weighing in on whether municipalities should be broadband providers. We believe people that have experience -- the guys who know what they are doing and are going to be in business for a long time -- should be the ones building the networks."

In many cases, he added, communities know what they are doing and shouldn't have to wait for gigabit services to come to them, but the better scenario is for communities and service providers to work together.

C Spire is one model of how that can work. The carrier, known mostly for its wireless services, is leveraging its statewide fiber optic network -- built mostly for backhaul -- to support the FTTP networks it is building in selected cities based on a competition modeled after Google Fiber's "Fiberhood" approach.

The "Get Fiber First" campaign is succeeding best in areas where the local mayors and town governments are engaged in promoting the effort, said Suzy Hays, SVP, consumer marketing, for C Spire. The campaign's goals are lofty -- no less than a statewide economic push that also intends to improve the state's oft-maligned education system and serve its hospitals and other community institutions as well.

The upside for Adtran to its Gig Communities initiative is an obvious one: The company hopes to sell much more of its networking gear, and particularly its GPON equipment, and gain some advantage over rivals such as Calix Networks Inc. (NYSE: CALX), which has been doing its own promotion on the economic benefits of FTTP, and Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU). By expanding its reach to munis, utilities and cable companies, Adtran is also hoping to create a larger customer base for the full range of its equipment. As Bolton pointed out, Adtran already sells its enterprise networking gear to the cable industry, which is rapidly growing its small business broadband services.

— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading

(7)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Duh!
50%
50%
Duh!,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/14/2014 | 11:21:50 AM
Re: Bolton statement
Because the economics of infrastructure is completely different than the economics of applications.

Incumbent telcos and MSOs - love 'em or hate 'em - are really good at building infrastructure.  They've got decades of experience, armies of experienced planners, engineers and techs, trucks, tools, processes, records.  And they've got volume, which translates to lower costs. 

Munis, coops, regionals etc. can acquire the expertise (disclosure: including mine) and contract out the construction work.  They may be less efficient than an incumbent.  They also can support business cases that the investor-owned organizations can't.

People in the industry get too hung up on who does the build-out.  The right answer is  "It doesn't matter whether a cat is black or white, only that it catches mice".
nasimson
50%
50%
nasimson,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/14/2014 | 1:08:19 AM
Bolton statement
> We believe people that have experience -- the guys who know > what they are doing and are going to be in business for a long time > should be the ones building the networks." That's a lame argument by Bolton. If that is allowed no disruption would never happen. The reason we are witnessing ecommerce, car sharing, taxi ordering, cloud music, app stores, movie streaming is that guys from other industries could innovate and experiment in other industries. How can people get away with such statements!
cnwedit
50%
50%
cnwedit,
User Rank: Light Beer
8/13/2014 | 4:36:45 PM
Re: Beautiful Day in the Giga-Hood
Karl, 

I would agree, in general. I think the danger is where service providers are doing this to jump on the gigabit bandwidth and they basically do a limited deployment. 

Where the munis are getting into the picture, I think that is less likely to happen. But I guess where politicians are involved, anything is possible. 
KBode
50%
50%
KBode,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/13/2014 | 4:26:23 PM
Re: Beautiful Day in the Giga-Hood
"There is one concern I have with the rush to gigabit services: If we wind up with some set of cities/towns/areas with gigabit services while others still don't have broadband at all, then we've just created a new and deeper digital divide"

And we need to keep the attention focused on price and competition. It's great if a few developments, college dorms, and high-end apartment/condos get 1 Gbps in a city, but what good does that do the rest of the city if price and availability are lacking?
jabailo
50%
50%
jabailo,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/13/2014 | 12:42:44 PM
Re: Beautiful Day in the Giga-Hood
Yes, well that's just it.   We can...and should...create these Gigabit Cities away from the Shipping, Railroad and Highway cities.   The reason?  We can!   The rise of Cloud Jobs and Social Media means new metrics for judging a best place to live.

Look at all the expensive cities like Seattle and San Francisco.  Part of the reason?  They are 18th century cities based on shipping.   Their downtowns are isthmuses -- surrounded by water on 3 sides!   Yes, if you are a ship chandler waiting for a schooner, then these are ideal places to live...but if you want a modern house, in a low cost, yet quality suburb...then you should build your Gig City on the plains of Nebraska.
cnwedit
50%
50%
cnwedit,
User Rank: Light Beer
8/13/2014 | 11:24:17 AM
Re: Beautiful Day in the Giga-Hood
I think most mayors would agree with you on that. 

There is one concern I have with the rush to gigabit services: If we wind up with some set of cities/towns/areas with gigabit services while others still don't have broadband at all, then we've just created a new and deeper digital divide.

So in the rush to do gigabit services, we can't lose sight of the need to continue pushing broadband into areas that aren't served

The C spire effort made me think of this - there are rural areas of Mississippi that aren't served at all, and creating gigabit towns in that state will help those towns but not necessarily the unserved areas. 
jabailo
50%
50%
jabailo,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/13/2014 | 10:39:18 AM
Beautiful Day in the Giga-Hood
Just as ship ports created communities in the 18th century, railroads in the 19th,   Interstate highways in the 20th, expect Giga-Hoods to arise whose economy is based on fast access to Cloud jobs and services.
Educational Resources
sponsor supplied content
Educational Resources Archive
From The Founder
Cisco's Conrad Clemson, recently promoted to head up the company's Service Provider Apps & Platforms developments, talks to Light Reading's Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about how he's bringing cloud video, mobile and virtualization together to empower network operators.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei at CeBIT 2017: Day 3

3|22|17   |     |   (0) comments


Light Reading reports from CeBIT 2017 in Germany, where Huawei is exhibiting on the application of technologies and key business verticals such as transportation, smart city, manufacturing, media and finance.
LRTV Documentaries
No Regrets: Cox's Finkelstein on Fiber & More

3|22|17   |     |   (0) comments


At the Cable Next-Gen Technologies & Strategies event in Denver, Cox's Jeff Finkelstein examines the cable capex conundrum.
LRTV Documentaries
Cable Next-Gen: The 'Mile High' View From Denver

3|22|17   |   11:56   |   (0) comments


Alan Breznick kicks off the Cable Next-Gen Technologies & Strategies event in Denver, casting his thousand-yard stare over cable's current competitive landscape.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei at CeBIT 2017: Day 2

3|21|17   |   2:27   |   (0) comments


Light Reading reports from CeBIT 2017 in Germany, where Huawei is exhibiting digital transformation solutions around IoT, smart data centers, OpenCloud ecosystem and its newly announced storage-as-a-service solution.
LRTV Custom TV
Driving Better Mobile Customer Experience While Transforming the Mobile Network

3|21|17   |   7:47   |   (0) comments


The Citrix NetScaler mobile gateway is an intelligent traffic management solution which can markedly improve the customer experience provided by mobile operators, even when traffic is encrypted. Critical network services can be consolidated and virtualized using NetScaler. Because of the unique architecture, NetScaler can be deployed on any hypervisor, on a ...
LRTV Custom TV
Mastercard: What's Next for Mobile Payments?

3|21|17   |   7:49   |   (0) comments


2017 marks the fifth consecutive year for Mastercard at Mobile World Congress and it was a great time to reflect on the amazing advances the payments industry has made as well as discuss "What's Next' in the digital commerce future. We spoke to James Anderson, executive vice president of digital payments at MasterCard, about digital wallets to tokenization to ...
LRTV Custom TV
Mastercard: 2 Billion Adults 'Trapped' in Cash Economy

3|21|17   |   03:51   |   (0) comments


Despite advances made in the last several years, two billion adults around the world are trapped in a cash economy and lack what we take for granted -- a safe way to receive, save and use money. Shamina Singh, executive vice president of sustainability and president of the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth, chats about how Mastercard is developing new ways to ...
LRTV Custom TV
Mastercard: Payment From Every Device

3|21|17   |   5:55   |   (0) comments


A world where everything and everyone is connected creates new points of interaction for commerce. These digital experiences cannot be developed in isolation and instead require an ecosystem to drive mass consumer and enterprise adoption and create better consumer engagement. Predicting when that growth will happen is difficult, but always keeping the end user in ...
LRTV Interviews
InterDigital's Role in the 5G, IoT Era

3|21|17   |   05:47   |   (0) comments


Alan Carlton, managing director and VP for Europe at InterDigital, talks about the company's role in 5G projects in Europe and the prospects for the company in the IoT market.
LRTV Interviews
Lessons Learned From Digital Transformation

3|21|17   |   05:51   |   (0) comments


Ravi Palepu, global head of Telco Solutions at Virtusa, talks about some key takeaways from telco digital transformation experiences during the past couple of years.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
NetNumber's CMO Shares Her Diversity Do's

3|21|17   |   3:19   |   (2) comments


The telecom industry is transforming the world, and diversity plays a critical role in driving the innovation behind it. NetNumber CMO Kim Gibbons shares why diversity and being authentic is a do amidst all the don'ts women in comms often hear.
LRTV Custom TV
Software-Driven Architecture for 5G & IOT

3|20|17   |   1:56   |   (0) comments


We present Heavy Reading's Jim Hodges's report from Mobile World Congress -- where operators and vendors are working to bring a variety of technologies together to make virtualization a reality in the era of 5G and IoT.
Upcoming Live Events
May 15-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
May 15, 2017, Austin Convention Center - Austin, TX
June 6, 2017, The Joule Hotel, Dallas, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
High-Band 5G: Let's Address the Range Question, Shall We?
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 3/21/2017
Eurobites: Italy First Pasta the Post for 5G
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 3/17/2017
5G Faces a Marathon, Not a Sprint
Iain Morris, News Editor, 3/17/2017
Eurobites: A1, Nokia Turn It Up to 11
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 3/22/2017
SXSW Pics: Women, Weirdness & Waiting in Austin
Sarah Thomas, Director, Women in Comms, 3/16/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
TEOCO Founder and CEO Atul Jain talks to Light Reading Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the challenges around cost control and service monetization in the mobile and IoT sectors.
At MWC 2017, Qualcomm's CTO Matt Grob talks to Light Reading's CEO and Founder Steve Saunders about the progress being made in the development of the technologies and standards that will underpin 5G.
Animals with Phones
Neither Do We Click Here
Is that a prerequisite?
Live Digital Audio

Playing it safe can only get you so far. Sometimes the biggest bets have the biggest payouts, and that is true in your career as well. For this radio show, Caroline Chan, general manager of the 5G Infrastructure Division of the Network Platform Group at Intel, will share her own personal story of how she successfully took big bets to build a successful career, as well as offer advice on how you can do the same. We’ll cover everything from how to overcome fear and manage risk, how to be prepared for where technology is going in the future and how to structure your career in a way to ensure you keep progressing. Chan, a seasoned telecom veteran and effective risk taker herself, will also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air.