Wrapping up another week of gigabit news. In today's edition of Gigabites, the White House plans for and funds new gigabit+ wireless research with the help of US Ignite, Austin joins the "Gigabit Smart Communities" project, a customer in Atlanta shares his experience with Comcast DOCSIS 3.1 service and more.
The goal of the consortium is to nurture bleeding-edge wireless networking research in ways that strengthen the connection between the academic arena and industry end users. And it's got some high-profile industry backers on board. All four major wireless carriers in the US are part of the effort as well as other major tech companies including Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC), Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK), Qualcomm Inc. (Nasdaq: QCOM) and more.
So what does the new consortium plan to do? It intends ultimately to support four "unique, city-scale wireless research platforms" with the help of both public and private funding and other resources. These Platforms for Advanced Wireless Research (PAWR) will enable experimentation in areas like millimeter wave (mmWave), 5G architectures and beyond, dynamic spectrum and wide-area Whitespace. Eventually the consortium expects the low-latency, gigabit networks created through these platforms to enable new applications and services that help solve problems in the fields of healthcare, education, transportation, public safety and energy. (See also Ready, Set, Go! FCC Votes for First 5G Spectrum.)
As background on US Ignite, the White House announced a plan last year to invest more than $160 million in smart city research, with $11.5 million going to US Ignite and the Mozilla Foundation to create "Living Labs" within gigabit communities. US Ignite leader Bill Wallace says that the new Advanced Wireless Industry Consortium builds on the organization's core mission "to help catalyze and deploy applications that leverage smart, gigabit wired and wireless networks." (See White House Funding Seeds Smart Cities.)
While the new wireless consortium is the big news out of US Ignite this week, the organization also continues to expand its broader gigabit development efforts. Austin announced Thursday that it has joined US Ignite's Smart Gigabit Communities initiative and will create two new gigabit applications for sharing among program participants. The last city to join the program was Phoenix in April with the help of additional funding from Cox Communications Inc. The initial federal funding for the program has been fully expended. (See Gigabites: Phoenix Wins Smart City Lottery.)
Back in the private sector, AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) continues its march across the country with gigabit rollouts. The telco has announced new GigaPower deployments in Atlanta, Austin and Orlando. A deployment doesn't mean that service is available everywhere, however. As in Charlotte and other cities, access to AT&T GigaPower is likely to take time to spread. (See 18 Months On, Google Fiber Lands in Charlotte.)
And finally, Comcast's gigabit service based on DOCSIS 3.1 technology has now been sighted in the wild in Atlanta. An individual in the DSLReports forums has posted an image of his new D3.1 modem from Technicolor (Euronext Paris: TCH; NYSE: TCH) and speed test results from the new service.
In the meantime, WiFI... Pervasive WiFi in places like NYC is getting out ahead of the experimental stuff these folks are discussing - and yes, I realize unsecured shared spectrum has very different uses, but it seems like it's already extending the reach of the broadband networks in the biggest cities.