West Virginia's Broadband Woes Continue Courtesy of Frontier
We've consistently discussed the sorry state of broadband service in West Virginia, whether it was back when Verizon couldn't be bothered to make repairs
, or after Frontier purchased Verizon territories they couldn't afford to fully upgrade. To summarize for those not up-to-date with Frontier:
• Frontier has been outraged
at being forced to provide basic broadband speeds after receiving
millions from the state of West Virginia and the federal government
•When asked about possibly upgrading their 1 mbps upload speed at a city meeting, a Frontier executive answered the question by storming out
•Frontier has received rather absurd favoritism
from West Virginia, which has now spent $126.3 million on ridiculously overpriced, overpowered and unused routers
, and ridiculously overpaid, redundant Frontier consultants
who haven't actually accomplished anything (the state then tried to cover up the mess by hiding the results of internal audits
Now, a new report
has come out that shows only 12 percent of Frontier customers have Internet speeds that meet federal and state minimum standards for broadband service: 4 mbps download and 1 mbps upload. Even though Frontier is West Virginia’s largest Internet provider, Frontier customers have the slowest Internet speeds in the state.
“The data set tells us that Frontier has the lowest speeds,” said Tony Simental
, who helped compile the state statistics for the Broadband Strategic Plan.
The 69-page report was based on more than 200,000 online “speed tests” submitted by customers at homes and businesses in West Virginia. Of course, Frontier criticized the report
by saying the survey method skewed the numbers. Frontier also blamed customers by saying that they often wanted slower speeds and those unhappy would be more likely to take speed tests. Oh dare they complain about their speeds!
As the report notes, both residential and business customers said they were dissatisfied with the lack of competition due to having just one or two, saying they had only one or two Internet companies to choose from.
Meanwhile, Frontier continues to cry about competitors wanting to enter their areas in West Virginia. Frontier seems to believe that since they have laid down fiber lines that no one else can use, that the city/state should not be able to lay down any more lines that could compete against them.
·Verizon Online DSL
Frontier inherited a POS Well, I cant speak highly of Frontier's networks in W.VA. The areas they acquired from Verizon were trashed - they still have not managed to totally repair the damage neglect had done over 10 years. Trash bags as permanent repairs, leaking cable, lightning damaged cable, missing records, the works! Many of the remote terminals look rusted and crusty...unless they were put in within the last 10 years.
The GTE areas Frontier bought in 1993 are in a little better shape. The eastern panhandle near VA seems to have copper plant that is in OK condition, at least around Harper's Ferry and Charles Town. Nothing obvious like the trash bags/open peds in VZ or Ex-VZ areas.
Still, on a drive through the vast rural areas of the state that were GTE, you would swear GTE was still in business. All the signs on the equipment say GTE. The doors on CO's say GTE (with an additional Frontier sticker on the building). Its like Frontier was never even there!
I did see a rather funny invention - a "West Virginian Central Office". It was a Gazebo over 3 GTE Automatic Electric remote terminals, a DSLAM, a T-1 repeater can, and 2 cross-boxes.
I wish I could have gotten a picture, it was sort of funny in a sad way (why not build a proper mini-CO?) The RT's had GTE stickers on them, as well as the T-1 can. The DSLAM had a nice big FRONTIER sign on it - they are so proud of this monstrosity!
I will admit it did not look too bad. Nothing was falling apart and it looked maintained.
Still, its sort of obvious that the infrastructure in W.VA is suffering from age, combined with a non-favorable socioeconomic situation for build out in a majority of the state.
It seems to me that the areas served by Comcast are lucky. I hope Comcast wont bail out of W.VA as they are the only major provider that has not given up totally on the state. (Not that Frontier has given up, but they have not shown any real effort besides trying to clean up VZ's mess and extending DSL availability at the pace of a turtle)
said by dnoyeB:Sort of.
The wonders of private industry. No different than government run. There all just greedy humans.
Corporate is greedy while government is merely incompetent.