Gigabit Cities

Gigabites: 10-Gig Is the New Gigabit

Welcome to your weekly Gigabites roundup. In this edition, 10-Gig becomes the next gigabit standard, AT&T adds a dozen new GigaPower markets and two cities take very different approaches to new gigabit deployments.

  • Following fast on the news that Chattanooga is offering residential broadband service with speeds up to 10 gigabits per second, Rocket Fiber in Detroit now says it has been beta testing a 10-Gig service in the Capitol Park neighborhood and plans to connect more residential customers in downtown and midtown Detroit in 2016. On top of its residential plans, the company also says it will offer service to commercial customers with speeds up to 100 Gbits/s. (See also Chattanooga Vaults to 10-Gig With NG-PON.)

    Rocket Fiber already operates 17 miles of fiber in Detroit, although it's unknown at this point what type of electronics the company is using to deliver its highest speeds. As for pricing, Rocket Fiber says it will charge residential customers $70 per month for 1-Gig service and $299 per month for 10-Gig service. Business service pricing is available upon request.

    The rollout of gigabit broadband access networks is spreading. Find out what's happening where in our dedicated Gigabit Cities content channel here on Light Reading.

  • AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) isn't slowing down with its gigabit deployments. This week, the operator added a dozen new markets to its GigaPower list including areas of Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Miami and Orlando. Also on the list is Salisbury, N.C., where municipally owned service provider Fibrant recently announced it will begin offering 10-Gig service to area residents in 2016. (See Carolina Town Becomes First US 10-Gig City.)

  • The town of Portland, Me. is following in Salisbury's muni-broadband footprints. The town has issued a request for proposals to extend an existing city-owned fiber network to additional municipal buildings. As phase two of the project, the city says it hopes to expand into offering high-speed broadband services to residential and commercial customers along that same fiber route.

  • While publicly funded broadband deployments are growing in popularity, some cities are getting the benefit of private investment even when there isn't a big name like AT&T or Google Fiber Inc. in town. In the case of Hagerstown, Md., the city put out an RFP looking for broadband partners, and Antietam Cable responded with an offer to invest $3 million in a new fiber network. Construction is set to begin early next year, and Antietam plans to offer gigabit service to residents for two years at a cost of $99 per month plus a $99 installation fee.

    — Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, Light Reading

  • kq4ym 11/29/2015 | 1:35:55 PM
    Re: Push - pull I still can't comprehend the need in reality for most customers to want the gigs of service expecially when one considers the pricing. With " $70 per month for 1-Gig service and $299 per month for 10-Gig," I'd be curious how those numbers are chosen and what customers choose one over the other and any reality check they make on those choices.
    inkstainedwretch 11/16/2015 | 3:25:10 PM
    Re: Push - pull Good point. The inability of a residential user to make use of 1 gig (let alone 10) makes you wonder what the point is, but a percentage of those "residential" users are actually small businesses. I'll look around and see if I can find what that percentage is, and what kind of usage patterns those customers have. -- Brian Santo
    danielcawrey 11/16/2015 | 2:21:47 PM
    Re: Push - pull Love seeing these fiber deployments going on. In some of these municipalities, this infrastructure can really attract technology companies looking to expand out of more expensive cities.

    Geography shouldn't matter when building a technology company – but having fiber does.
    KBode 11/16/2015 | 12:50:24 PM
    Re: Push - pull I still think the much more interesting conversation to have now is about price and avoiding usage caps, not speed. As others have noted users can't even really saturate a gig right now, much less ten gigs. Still, nice to see people aiming high, even if it's mostly just to market slower tiers of service.
    inkstainedwretch 11/14/2015 | 12:53:59 AM
    Push - pull Exactly. And who wants to store uncompressed video? And yet, there you have that Gbps connection, and the heart wants what the heart wants. -- Brian Santo
    brooks7 11/13/2015 | 10:49:26 PM
    Re: Push - pull What backbones are going to be built to carry uncompressed video?  Even if you can get that bandwidth at the edge the cost to carry it long haul will become irrational pretty quickly.

    Let's use Chattanooga as an example - population of 170K or so.  That means about 34K households.  If we use an average usage rate of 1Gbps and say that 80% of traffic is remote (pretty much average for Internet Service) that gives us:

    BW required = 1Gbps * 34K * 0.8 = 27 Tbps required to be plowed to Chattanooga.  I recognize that this is a worse than worst case but if the vast bulk of the traffic is streaming video then you can't oversubscribe things.



    inkstainedwretch 11/13/2015 | 7:34:16 PM
    Push - pull And the applications that are going to use all that bandwidth are...?  VR? There are many good reasons to continue to compress media, but with 10 Gbps into the home, are consumers going to seek out uncompressed streaming video and audio?  -- Brian Santo
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