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

Report: Google dropping more than $1B on satellites to extend Internet

June 2, 2014 1:33 pm | by Ben Munson, Wireless Week | News | Comments

Google is deploying 180 satellites to provide Internet access to under-served and unconnected regions in the world, according to The Wall Street Journal. The price range for the project could range from $1 billion to more than $3 billion. The report said the number of satellites could double based on final designs.

TDS lights 1-Gig service in N.H.

June 2, 2014 12:46 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

TDS Telecom has fired up its first 1-Gig service offering in Hollis, New Hampshire for less than $100 a month as part of a bundle. The 1 Gbps service, which features 400 Mbps on the upstream, came on the heels of TDS launching a 300 Mbps service on its fiber network that serves Hollis in December. 

AT&T signs up to provide GigaPower near UT campus

May 30, 2014 12:24 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Starting Aug. 1, AT&T will be delivering its GigaPower service to a new student housing complex near the University of Texas in Austin. AT&T will provision its GigaPower service over a fiber-to-the-premise network to the housing complex, which is called “The Villas on 26th.”

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Apple's Beats buy is two-sided for music streaming

May 30, 2014 12:12 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Apple's $3 billion purchase of headphone maker and streaming music company Beats Electronics sheds light on a rarely recognized reality in the music-streaming industry: It's hard to succeed in the business without offering other products and services. 

Report: Deutsche Telekom accepts SoftBank’s offer for T-Mobile

May 29, 2014 1:18 pm | by Ben Munson, Wireless Week | News | Comments

SoftBank CEO and Sprint Chairman Masayoshi Son has been loudly making a case for further consolidation in the U.S. wireless industry. Son’s arguments have suggested that a combined Sprint and T-Mobile would be better equipped to take on the “duopoly” of Verizon and AT&T as well as improve service and pricing for U.S. wireless consumers.

Kansai TV, Elemental Tech, demo 4K on ISDB-T network

May 29, 2014 1:14 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Kansai TV, a commercial broadcaster in Osaka, demonstrated the delivery of HEVC-encoded 4K video over ISDB-T to an Ultra HD TV. The demo used Elemental Technologies’ video processing equipment. The off-air demonstration took place during a 4K educational event hosted by Kansai TV and system integrator CTCSP last week.

Net Neut fight: Bill to limit FCC's Title II powers introduced

May 29, 2014 1:00 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has threatened Title II should communications service providers fail to accede to whatever the new network neutrality rules are. Rep. Bob Latta (R-Ohio) introduced legislation that would explicitly bar the FCC from applying Title II of the Communications Act to broadband.

Report: CCAP evolution underway

May 29, 2014 12:51 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

According to a recent report, cable operators are starting to embrace the cable industry’s converged cable access platform (CCAP) over traditional cable modem termination systems (CMTS.) The recent first quarter was another record setter for CCAP revenue, which jumped 177 percent sequentially while CMTS revenue dropped 76 percent.

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Videotron offers new 802.11ac router to subscribers

May 28, 2014 3:01 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Videotron is serving up a new Wi-Fi router that supports 802.11ac and 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz wireless networks simultaneously. The router was developed exclusively for Videotron in partnership with ZyXEL. Videotron said that supporting 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz wireless networks limited interference and lag. 

Virgin Media takes small cells for a spin in Leeds

May 28, 2014 12:30 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Virgin Media Business partnered with vendor Siklu for a small cell trial in Leeds, which is the third-largest city in the United Kingdom. To showcase the ease of the installs, Siklu’s radios were installed on various types of light poles by technicians that didn’t have any telecommunications experience.

Court rejects challenge to FCC broadband plan

May 27, 2014 2:34 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

A federal appeals court is rejecting challenges to the FCC's plan to expand broadband Internet service to rural areas. The expansion is funded partly by fees paid by telecommunications companies. Many of those companies contended the FCC did not have the authority to use the money for Internet service.

TWC automates Wi-Fi hotspot sign-ins for customers

May 27, 2014 1:32 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable has launched a new online customer portal that will enable its customers to connect automatically to Wi-Fi hotspots. TWC customers go to the new portal and register their Wi-Fi enabled devices. After that, they will automatically be signed in to any Wi-Fi hotspot operated by TWC or its cable affiliates.

Bolt Fiber to install GPON network in Oklahoma

May 27, 2014 1:09 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Bolt Fiber Optic Services has contracted with Alcatel-Lucent to install GPON for triple-play service delivery. The 1 gigabit service will begin in the fourth quarter of 2014 and is scheduled for completion by April, 2017.  A-L is acting as system integrator; the network will include A-L GPON equipment.

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Ciena provisions F6’s 100-G network

May 27, 2014 12:36 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

F6 Networks is using Ciena’s packet optical and packet networking gear to provision a dark fiber network that it’s building between Atlantic Canada and the northeastern United States. The 100-gigabit network will be used by public sector organizations, private enterprises, Internet services providers and wireless carriers. 

Cox heads to starting blocks for 1-Gig service; CenturyLink expands 1-Gig in Vegas

May 23, 2014 12:59 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

After announcing it was going to offer a 1 Gbps service to its residential customers last month, Cox Communications provided more details on the roll out. Cox will enter the 1-gigabit ring by starting with new residential construction projects and new and existing neighborhoods in Phoenix, Las Vegas and Omaha. In all Cox locations, the cable operator said it would begin market-wide deployment of gigabit speeds by the end of 2016.

Report: Samsung prepping actual watchphone

May 23, 2014 12:48 pm | by Ben Munson, Wireless Week | News | Comments

The device will actually place and receive phone calls without needing to be tethered to a smartphone. The report outfits the device with a camera, GPS, Bluetooth, a heart-rate monitor and email functionality. Samsung is reportedly in talks with U.S. wireless providers about the yet-unnamed device, which could be announced as soon as June or July.

Amazon becomes a programmer with its first show

May 23, 2014 12:43 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

"Tumble Leaf," follows the adventures of a blue fox named Fig. Amazon plans to release two more new kids programs over the summer. Only members of Amazon's Prime subscription plan can watch the programs, which are produced by Amazon Studios.

Indiana phone co-op buys local cable operator

May 23, 2014 12:34 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Pulaski White Rural Telephone Cooperative (PWRTC) is in the process of acquiring TV Cable of Winamac, aka Zing. The purchase price was not disclosed. Together, the operation will be able to provide a triple play bundle that combines the most advanced services of each.

Review: Apple's CarPlay headed in right direction

May 22, 2014 1:43 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

CarPlay implants some of the iPhone's main applications in automobiles so drivers can control them with voice commands, a touch on the steering wheel or a swipe on a display screen in the dashboard. It's expected to be available this summer when Pioneer Electronics plans to release a software update for five car radios designed to work with the iPhone.

AT&T trials LTE-based home broadband service

May 22, 2014 1:32 pm | by Ben Munson, Wireless Week | News | Comments

The company is planning a nationwide roll-out of a service for its wireless customers, who for $30 a month will be able to install a router in their homes that will convert LTE broadband into Wi-Fi signals. Up to 10 devices will be able to connect to the router at a time, AT&T said.

Lincoln, Neb., fires up free municipal Wi-Fi network

May 22, 2014 1:11 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The city has switched on an outdoor public Wi-Fi access service built with equipment from Ruckus Wireless. NebraskaLink is providing a 1-gigabit network connection to support the project. Commonwealth Electric, the City's fiber optic contractor, donated the installation of the fiber optic network.

TWC sets a date for 300 Mbps tier in Austin

May 22, 2014 12:41 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Starting June 3, Time Warner Cable will debut its 300 Mbps tier to more than 100,000 customers in Austin, Texas. Back in February Time Warner Cable announced it would increase the speeds across six of its residential data plans at no additional cost. 

TWCBC’s Warfield 1st winner of SCTE’s Oakes scholarship award

May 22, 2014 12:30 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable Business Class’ Jeanie Warfield was named as the first recipient of the Catherine Oakes Memorial Leadership Scholarship for Women, the SCTE Foundation announced today. The $3,700 scholarship award was created to honor the memory of Cathy Oakes, senior vice president, operations for SCTE, who passed away suddenly last November. 

AT&T: DirecTV deal won't impact network plans

May 22, 2014 12:23 pm | by Andrew Berg, Wireless Week | News | Comments

Bill Smith, president of AT&T’s network operations, said AT&T’s pending acquisition of DirectTV won’t have any effect on how the carrier invests in its network. Smith said that if anything, the acquisition of DirecTV was complimentary to AT&T’s current network plans. 

Conviva: Live From the Show: Conviva

May 21, 2014 8:01 pm | by CED | Videos | Comments

Conviva chief strategy officer Keith Zubchevich on the how the Internet remains a hostile environment for video, even as more video is traversing the open network, and on the technological approach Conviva devised for making the Internet safe for video.

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