Free Press: AT&T Is About to Make Broadband Market Much Worse
Severing DSL, POTS Lines Creates Major Issues
by Karl Bode 08:42AM Friday Mar 01 2013 Tipped by dib22
As I've been noting, both AT&T and Verizon have been busy trying to gut absolutely all regulatory oversight of those companies
, in the process severing the DSL and landlines of tens of millions of users
, who'll have to flee to an even less-competitive cable monopoly, more-expensive and capped LTE service, or even pricier and more-heavily capped satellite broadband.
The gadget-obsessed press and incumbent-beholden regulators so far have napped through the implications of this, as AT&T's claim that regulations simply need to be "modernized" as we go all IP appears to have lulled most of them into a compliant slumber. This is however the biggest shift in telecom in the last thirty years, and it deserves more than the usual fringe attention broadband telecom policy receives.
Free Press Research Director Derek S. Turner has posted a good read over at Wired
clearly illustrating what's at state if the country dumbly plays along with AT&T's efforts to sever the PSTN while killing off nearly all serious regulatory oversight of the industry giant. Namely, higher rates, seniors suddenly without landlines, and worse service:
Seniors, low-income families, and rural residents — all of whom are more likely to rely on fixed-line voice services or dial-up internet access — would especially feel the pinch. Carriers that are now required to offer universal service will be free to redline poor neighborhoods and disconnect consumers at will. Elderly grandmothers living on fixed incomes rely on rate-regulated landlines to stay connected, but they need not worry: AT&T has an expensive wireless plan they can purchase instead.
That sounds dramatic, but it's a very real outcome. Turner doesn't even get into the fact that AT&T and Verizon's exit from the fixed-line broadband market creates a much stronger cable broadband monopoly, driving up costs for those users as well. All of this will be swatted down by paid industry pundits despite the fact that historically, you'd be hard pressed to find a time when deregulating AT&T didn't make service considerably worse and more expensive
for the end user.
Pompano Beach, FL
| |said by Duramax08:Similar story.. My POT's service had just hit $27 a month when I dumped AT&T. Now I have LD included, Caller id, Call block, Call waiting, etc.
We ported our number to straight talk home phone. It uses the Verizon network. Only cost $17 after taxes and it included unlimited long distance calling, caller ID and all of those perks you can get, the device only cost about $130 shipped. When we were with AT&T, we were paying $30 a month after taxes just for local calling. Thats it. No long distance, no caller id.
Same goes for my deteriorating aDSL service, dumped it just before disconnecting POTS.
All in all, a big savings/upgrade, $80 to $90 a month worth.
When I'm home, cell phones connect via BT gateway to Panasonic cordless phones with talking caller id. (A very nice feature).
Re: They don't have to gut regulations...
said by skeechan:Some people are so stupid that they'll keep paying for it. That is the problem.
...simply raise the price of DSL to $100/mo or discontinue the service all together.
| |The LimitPremium
Perfect Time... ...to break up AT&T and Verizon. This is getting beyond absurd. Either break them up or make it easier for smaller players to start doing business in this sector. The free market isn't at work here, and how some can claim this is quite beyond my understanding, of which I can be certain. "OH BUT FREE MARKET IS AT WORK!" Yea, let's ignore what's going on in Washington and how some of these laws are "crafted" by those who would rather see the market shrink and become more uncompetitive than it already is. No conflict of interest there AT ALL. Why is this allowed?!
"We will evaluate these integrals rigorously if we can, and non-rigorously if we must".
---Victor Moll, invited talk, Tom Osler Fest (April 17, 2010)
Re: Perfect Time...
said by The Limit:What good will that do? It doesn't change the competitive landscape, which is the crux of the issue. It doesn't encourage competitors' entrance into the market...especially in the rural areas that VZ and T want to exit. It all boils down to money and an acceptable ROI.
...to break up AT&T and Verizon.
Re: Perfect Time...
said by The Limit:Wireless needs to be separated from the wireline side. AT&T and Verizon are spending tons of cash on wireless at the cost of ignoring the wired side. It would be best if the wire side was a separate company.
What would you suggest? My thought is that at least all of that money wouldn't be focused in one place, therefore huge sums of money couldn't be spent lobbying for idiotic bills that do nothing but good for them, but bad for us as customers. I'm all for free market, as long as the free market was actually allowed to work without companies like these scheming in the background with their huge bags of money and undesirable machinations. I'm seriously at a loss for a solution otherwise.
Our ISP took over the AT&T landline This is unfortunate for a lot of folks who still depend on landlines for voice and/or DSL. Our ISP took over the AT&T landline and rolled it into our DSL service. We still have all of the features we had before when AT&T owned our landline but the overall cost for both, landline and DSL, is about $70 less than what we had been paying. We now pay about $58 per month, including taxes, for 20MBps down DSL line, static IP, and basic landline features (free domestic LD, callerID, call waiting, etc). Sonic is the ISP.