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Broadband Direct

Daily news and top headlines for broadband communications engineering and design professionals

NYC to convert phone booths into muni Wi-Fi network

November 18, 2014 1:53 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

The city issued an RFP for the project, called LinkNYC, earlier this year, and today awarded the contract for the work to CityBridge, a team of companies comprised of Qualcomm, Titan, Control Group, and Comark. Titan is an ad company that currently operates most of the city’s pay phones.

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Infographic: Cable wins majority of new broadband subs in Q3

November 18, 2014 1:10 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

The 17 biggest broadband providers now account for 86.6 million subscribers. The cable companies among them claim over 51.2 million of the total; top telephone companies have nearly 35.4 million Internet subscribers. Cable added to its lead in the quarter.

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Midco to bring 1-Gig to Northern Plains

November 18, 2014 12:42 pm | by Mike Robuck | Comments

On Monday Midcontinent Communications unveiled its “Gigabit Frontier Initiative” that will eventually make gigabit speeds available to 600,000 homes and 55,000 businesses via a fiber network that covers more than 7,600 miles across the Northern Plains. Work on the Midcontinent Gigabit Frontier Initiative is slated to start next year.

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RCN tees up 330 Mbps tier in NYC

November 18, 2014 12:34 pm | by Mike Robuck | Comments

Starting next month, RCN will light up a 330 Mbps down, 20 Mbps up tier across its New York City footprint where it will compete against Time Warner Cable’s 300 Mbps offering. Pricewise, the 330/20 tier will start at $64.99 a month for new subscribers, which includes a three-year price guarantee. 

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Infographic: Global carrier Wi-Fi market to hit $3b by 2018

November 18, 2014 12:27 pm | by Mike Robuck | Comments

Driven by upgrades to 802.11ac and Hotspot 2.0, as well as voice-over-Wi-Fi, the carrier Wi-Fi equipment market is poised to hit $3 billion in 2018. In the first half this year,  carrier Wi-Fi equipment revenue reached $286 million, which was a 6 percent from the second half of 2013, according to a report by Infonetics Research.

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Wheeler: $2 a year fee to support school broadband

November 17, 2014 1:40 pm | by The Associated Press | Comments

The U.S. should spend $1.5 billion more a year to make sure every child has access to high-speed Internet connections at school, the head of the Federal Communications Commission said in a proposal that would increase slightly the fees consumers pay each month on their phone bills.

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Appeals court holds up megamergers; decision challenged

November 17, 2014 1:36 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

The U.S. Court of appeals ruled that programmers do not have to share details of their transmission contracts with a set of MVPDs because some of the MVPDs want to hire outside legal counsel to review the documents. The ACA challenged the decision as unjustified.

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AT&T drops user-tracking "super cookies"

November 17, 2014 1:08 pm | by The Associated Press | Comments

Super cookies provide a lucrative data-mining opportunity for advertisers. AT&T is giving up the practice because it made it nearly impossible to shield its subscribers' identities online. Verizon Wireless said it is still using this type of tracking.

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Comcast building data center in Oregon

November 17, 2014 1:01 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

Comcast is building a data center in Hillsboro, OR, which the company said will provide support for video, Internet and phone services for Oregon and southwest Washington customers. The company has a headend and a large sales center nearby.

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RCN updates TiVo user interface

November 17, 2014 12:43 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

RCN viewers now have the option to create categories in which they can file their “My Shows” selections. Users are also able to customize searches using their remote. New to any company using the TiVo interface is a feature that enables streaming to Android devices within the home.

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Sony's TV service to go commercial early next year

November 14, 2014 2:17 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

The service is called Vue, and will be delivered at first through PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 game consoles. The company will start with a free beta test with a limited number of people residing in New York. Sony intends to offer Vue commercially starting early next year.

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Infographic: Pay TV industry loses 150K customers in Q3

November 14, 2014 1:40 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

Infographic: The thirteen largest pay-TV providers in the U.S. lost 148,876 net video subscribers in the third quarter. Given gains in earlier quarters, that leaves the group down 105,000 for the year to date. Those companies represent about 95 percent of the market.

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Time Warner Cable finishes TWC Maxx upgrades in NYC, LA

November 14, 2014 12:35 pm | by Mike Robuck | Comments

Time Warner Cable announced it has applied the finishing touches to its “TWC Maxx” project upgrades in Los Angeles and New York. TWC Maxx, which was first outlined by CEO Rob Marcus in January, includes all digital conversions in both markets, which has led to faster data tiers, including 300 Mbps down, more VOD choices and an improved whole-home DVR offering.

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Cable One to spin off from Graham Holdings

November 14, 2014 12:28 pm | by Mike Robuck | Comments

Graham Holdings’ board of directors has decided that its Cable One division would be more successful on its own with the spinoff slated for next year. Graham Holdings board of directors gave management its nod of approval to proceed with plans for the complete legal and structural separation of Cable One, which will result in the cable operator being a publicly traded company.

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Small mobile providers voice concerns over Title II

November 14, 2014 12:23 pm | by Ben Munson, Wireless Week | Comments

Cellcom, Bluegrass Cellular and three other regional wireless providers are warning the FCC of the potential havoc Title II reclassification could wreak in the smaller markets they serve. The response from rural and regional carriers is similar to what larger carriers and wireless industry groups have said after President Obama earlier this week urged the FCC to reclassify ISPs as common carriers.

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