USF/ICC Zone

The changing landscape of USF and ICC have profound implications on the broadband ecosystem. Stay tuned to Telecompetitor for the latest news, analysis, & commentary.

NTCA: Wireless Broadband Substitution for Landline Not Viable

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Wireless-based alternatives are not a viable substitute for landline broadband, according to a new report issued this week that was sponsored by NTCA- The Rural Broadband Association and written by Vantage Point Solutions. Terrestrial wireless networks are considerably more costly on a per-bit basis than...Learn More

Windstream Targets E-Rate Funding for WiFi

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The FCC recently revised the USF E-Rate program, which helps fund telecommunications services for schools, to focus more on broadband, and WiFi specifically. Windstream has taken notice and is targeting E-rate funding for WiFi, with a managed WiFi service. The new E-Rate focus makes about...Learn More

Minnesota Gains 10-Gigabit Broadband for Schools from Telco Group

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Schools throughout a large part of northwestern Minnesota will be getting 10 gigabit broadband as the result of a cooperative effort between a school district consortium and a consortium of 18 small local telecom service providers. The initiative builds on a 13-year relationship between the...Learn More

Title II Broadband and Small Carriers: ACA Asks for Exemption

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The American Cable Association, which represents several hundred small U.S. cable companies, is asking the FCC to exempt its members from Title II obligations for broadband service. Many of those small cablecos offer broadband as well as video services, which would make them subject to...Learn More

DSL: The New Dial-Up?

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With the recent FCC definition of broadband changing to 25/3 Mbps, the impact on DSL based Internet services could be significant. Since potentially millions of DSL lines in the U.S. aren’t capable of 25/3 Mbps, by one definition, they are no longer broadband. Does that...Learn More

FCC Confirms Title II and Net Neutrality Plans, No USF Changes

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The FCC confirmed today that it plans to vote later this month on an order that would reclassify broadband as a Title II or telecommunications service and impose strict Network Neutrality rules. In a blog post on the website of media outlet Wired, FCC Chairman...Learn More

25 Mbps Broadband Definition Adopted, Wheeler Finds Carriers Hypocritical

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FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler had harsh words for broadband providers today, essentially accusing them of hypocrisy in their comments about broadband speed requirements. Wheeler’s comments came at today’s FCC meeting, at which the commission adopted a new definition of broadband of 25 Mbps downstream and...Learn More

FCC Fines Advanced Tel for Not Paying USF Fees

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January 26, 2015  — Washington, D.C. – The Federal Communications Commission plans to fine Advanced Tel, Inc. (Advanced Tel) $1,588,988 for failing to make required payments to federal programs that promote universal access to telecommunications services. “All phone companies are required to participate in universal...Learn More

Changes to RUS Broadband Loan Program Include Rural Gigabit Pilot

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When President Obama spoke last week about reforms to the USDA Rural Utilities Service broadband loan program, he was referencing changes adopted in the 2014 Farm Bill, a USDA official advised in an email to Telecompetitor. Although the changes have received little publicity, they include...Learn More

FCC Eyes 25 Mbps Broadband Definition, Finds Slow Progress

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Just one month after the FCC raised the broadband speed for the Connect America Fund program, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler wants to raise a different broadband speed benchmark — and by a considerably higher amount. Using the new benchmark speed, the commission also is poised...Learn More

How the FCC Plans to Stretch Budget to Support New Broadband Speed Target

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When the FCC in December raised the broadband speed target for the Connect America Fund  to 10 Mbps downstream and 1 Mbps upstream, some stakeholders questioned carriers’ ability to meet that target without an increase in the size of the fund, considering that the previous...Learn More

Telecom 2014: The Top 12 Stories Are All “To Be Continued”

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Telecompetitor covered a lot of big telecom stories in 2014, but there were 12 that stood out in my mind – and I thought readers might find it helpful to see them all recapped in one place. If there is any single common thread among...Learn More