A new report by RootMetrics
effectively declares Verizon the king when it comes to mobile network coverage, reliability, speed, and overall performance. The study, which collected data from 5.6 million test samples while driving some 234,000 miles across the country, gave the crown to Verizon for all metrics except text message performance, which Verizon closely lost to AT&T. When it came to overall network performance, Root Metrics gave Verizon a score of 81.6 out of 100, AT&T a 79.5. T-Mobile a 71.5 and Sprint a score of 69.6. T-Mobile and Sprint have "started to close the gap," insists the study. Again, you can read the full study here
New Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure insisted last week that better prices would be one of his first priorities
, and the company this week has introduced their first attempt at that promise. According to a company announcement
, Sprint's new "Sprint Family Share Pack" allows a family to share 20 GB of data, unlimited text and voice for $100 a month under a limited-time promotion.
To get their merger approved by regulators, one of Comcast's key arguments is that the company faces so much competition on so many fronts that this competition will keep them honest
. Most people know that Comcast enjoys little to no competition on the last mile, with AT&T and Verizon's retreat from many DSL lines
making things less competitive than ever.
The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) has filed suit against the FCC's for it's upcoming "incentive auction" of 600 MHz spectrum, claiming the auction as currently designed would harm broadcast television and cost the broadcast industry millions of dollars. The FCC's auction rules allow broadcasters to voluntarily give up spectrum to be auctioned off to wireless carriers. story continues..
The Wall Street Journal
notes that Time Warner Cable's existing relationship with Bright House Communications complicates Comcast's proposed acquisition of Time Warner Cable. Bright House is currently its own company, but Time Warner Cable has an ownership interest and historically handles programming, some engineering and technology acquisitions for the company (they even historically shared the "Road Runner" branding).
Verizon tinkered with wireless pricing over the weekend, offering a new $60 plan for individuals
that offers unlimited text, unlimited voice and 2 GB of data. Obviously this precludes being able to add additional devices like tablets to the plan, and the overages remain steep at $15 per each additional gigabyte consumed. Users who participate in Verizon's EDGE early handset upgrade program can grab $10 off the plan cost per month. There's oodles of additional detail provided by Verizon in a new FAQ
posted to the company's website.
Stop the Cap
amusingly notes how New York State Assembly Leader Joe Morelle's enthusiastic support of Comcast's Time Warner Cable merger was so enthusiastic
-- his letter of support sent to the New York Public Service Commission copies previous Comcast statements on the merger almost verbatim. "They provided a draft letter of support for our consideration. We made several edits of the letter. This is common practice for any organization asking for an elected official’s support to provide a sample letter," insists Morelle's office when asked about the plagiarism from local news outlets
. They're right -- this has been common practice for a decade; it's just that usually the politicians in question at least pretend
to be having original and unique thoughts.
A few days ago we noted that Suddenlink was the latest to throw its hat into the 1 Gbps ring, insisting that the company would be offering 1 Gbps to 90% of its customers
by 2017. The move is an aggressive one for a company not historically known for aggressive upgrades, leading one to wonder how exactly Suddenlink hopes to manage this feat. While DOCSIS 3.0 can achieve a lot via channel bonding, we're several years out from seeing reliable 1 Gbps on cable, especially upstream.
The as-yet unfinished DOCSIS 3.1 standard might be able to get part of the way there when it's finished two years or so from now, but Suddenlink insists that's not what they'll be using
Given that DOCSIS 3.1, an emerging CableLabs spec that is targeting multi-gigabit speeds, is about two years away from scaled deployments, I asked the MSO if Operation GigaSpeed “hinged on” the 3.1 technology, and the answer was no. And the company declined to answer if FTTP would factor into Operation GigaSpeed, particularly in greenfields.
2017 isn't really that far away, leaving you to wonder if Suddenlink has developed a miracle technology they're keeping hidden in the wings, or if their promise is hot air designed largely to deflect criticism for lagging behind in the age of Google Fiber.
AT&T has announced that the company has officially started selling symmetrical 1 Gbps Gigapower connections in select parts of their home town of Dallas. According to a company press release
, 1 Gbps speeds are only available to residents and small businesses in the Highland Park and University Park neighborhoods.
T-Mobile took significant heat this week after a leaked internal memo
indicated that the company would broadly be throttling "unlimited" LTE users who trade files via P2P. Aside from the whole "unlimited should be unlimited" argument, criticism has increased in recent years for the practice of using network management as a tool to drive users to metered plans (the memo indicated that metered users who use P2P would not
The US broadband industry has spent years now trying to argue the United States broadband market is secretly flawless, awesome and highly competitive, despite the fact that absolutely every independent source of broadband data (from Akamai
and the FCC
to the OECD
and OOkla's Net Index
) suggests we're absolutely and utterly mediocre at every metric that counts.
Thanks to napping regulators, apathy, and a poorly-informed public, the lack of competition continues to be the primary reason for our mediocrity.
Deployment of higher-fidelity VoLTE services has come in fits and starts lately after many delays, but it will be a few years before adoption is widespread enough to have a serious impact. Speaking at investor invent this week Verizon CFO Fran Shammo stated the company will begin offering voice calls over its LTE network toward the end of the year. The first Verizon Wireless smartphones to run voice calls exclusively over the 4G LTE network won't hit the market until the first half of 2016, predicts the CEO
. "For us, when we launch a new technology, we have to make sure our quality is strong because the CDMA network was so strong," Shammo stated. "We don't go before we know it's ready."
If you've been having problems accessing DSLReports.com and a flood of other websites this week, you're not alone. The problem, as it turns out, was experienced by tier-one and last mile ISPs alike across much of North America. story continues..
directs our attention to a leaked memo sent to T-Mobile staff
that indicates T-Mobile is going to start clamping down on customers who use their T-Mobile LTE connections for peer-to-peer file sharing. The memo notes that starting August 17, T-Mobile will begin reaching out to these users to remind them to read terms and conditions, which prohibits a number of behaviors including P2P.
While Microsoft proclaimed they wanted the Xbox One to be the broadband-powered heart of the home TV universe
, the company hamstrung the device in numerous ways that prevented that from ever happening. One such way was by intentionally excluding some pretty basic functionality seen in nearly every media device. Microsoft this week announced
they'll be fixing some earlier missteps by adding the ability to stream videos from USB and from a DLNA server
. By the end of the year, claims Microsoft, the Xbox One will support streaming of dozens of new file formats -- including mkv.
AT&T's flurry of cities where the company will offer limited deployments of 1 Gbps speeds continues, with the announcement
that Miami will also be a GigaPower market. As with previous announcements for Dallas, San Antonio and Nashville
, the announcement lacks any meaningful detail, AT&T simply stating that "specific locations of availability and pricing for the Miami market will be announced at a later date." Before Miami locals get too excited, you might want to read why these latest announcements by AT&T are a bit of a bluff
, and will focus primarily on only a select few high-end developments, college dorms and apartments.
A new map
created by a company named Broadview Networks offers up insight into the broadband speed peaks and valleys across the United States. According to a blog post by the company
, Virginia is the fastest state in the union, offering an average of 13.7 Mbps, while Alaska is the slowest, providing an average speed of 7 Mbps. Silicon Valley, heart of the country's technology universe, clocks in at 10.9 Mbps. Most of the data here was pulled from Akamai's latest State of the Internet report
(pdf), which offers significantly more detail.
Netflix has released the company's latest ISP streaming rankings
, which is based on 1 billion hours of TV viewing from 50 million Netflix members worldwide. Most of the list's leaders remain static, with Cablevision, Cox, Suddenlink, Charter and Comcast rounding out the top five.
According to a new report by Experian Marketing Services
, "cord-cutters" grew by 44 percent in the past four years, with 7.6 million households using broadband for streaming or downloading videos instead of traditional cable or satellite television. The report found that 48 percent of all U.S. adults and 67 percent of young adults watch streaming or downloaded video during a typical week. "While we are seeing the way we view video drastically changing, television is likely to remain the primary device for consumer video; we just are witnessing the transition of the definition of television," states the company.
·more stories, story search, most popular ..
Recent news contributors