Print 74 comment(s) - last by Integral9.. on Sep 22 at 9:17 AM

EPB is delivering the nation's fastest consumer internet connection by the end of the year -- a 1 Gbps service.

Only a few cities worldwide -- like Hong Kong -- have 1 gbps connections.  (Source:

Small-scale socialized internet offerings have been trampling the rates and service of commercial competitors like Comcast. These competitors have responded by trying to outlaw municipal Wi-Fi.  (Source: Comcast)
Socialized municipal offering handily beats out local commercial competitors

Despite the criticism of mild socialism -- including government-owned utilities -- thus far commercial cable offerings in the U.S. have fallen grossly short of successful municipal offerings.  Services like the municipal effort of Wilson, N.C. have offered faster, cheaper internet than commercial offerings.  Cable companies have responded by pouring millions into lobbying local, state, and federal governments to enact proposals to ban municipal internet services.  To date, they have seemed unable to stamp out this pesky brand of community socialism.

Now Chattanooga, Tennessee is preparing to launch a new municipal service which will offer speeds up to an incredible 1 Gbps.  The service, to be deployed by the end of the year, will be the fastest household internet connection available in America today.

Ron Littlefield, the city’s mayor, cheers, "This makes Chattanooga — a midsized city in the South — one of the leading cities in the world in its digital capabilities."

The service will be managed by city-owned utility EPB.  It will join just a handful of consumer 1 Gbps offerings worldwide, including the fastest connections in the city of Hong Kong.  The service is almost 200 times faster than the average U.S. broadband speed according to analysts.

There are some downsides of the super-fast service.  One is the ability to fully utilize the ultra-wide line.  While transmission speeds are somewhat dependent on what speed the downstream party can receive data at, they are also dependent on how fast upstream parties can serve the data at.  So while you may be able to get a 25 GB Blu-Ray movie in about three and a half minutes, in theory, few data providers will be able to serve the movie that fast.

Another obstacle is the price – a whopping $350 a month.  While the city is also offering more affordable bundles that should beat the rates of competitive commercial offerings, its top-tier option is undeniably pricey.  At that rate it may appeal more to businesses than the majority of individual buyers.

Comments Harold DePriest, chief executive of EPB, "We don’t know how to price a gig.  We’re experimenting. We’ll learn."

The new service will reach 170,000 homes and businesses in the area and help add a bit more bang to citizens' buck, in a region that 
Forbes magazine already rates as one of "America's Best Bang-For-The-Buck Cities.

If President Obama has his way, a national socialized internet offering will also soon arrive.  The President's FCC appointees are pushing plans to cover 100 million homes with 100 Mbps by 2020.  That connection would be one-tenth the speed of Chattanooga's. 

Despite the sluggish performance of cable giants like Comcast and Time Warner, some commercial players are also looking to deploy high-speed offerings.  Google announced plans to cover up to 500,000 people with 1 Gbps internet.  The service received 1,100 applications from communities and Google will announce its pick(s) by the end of the year.

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RE: Just great!
By AEvangel on 9/14/2010 7:32:26 PM , Rating: 4
You make me sick. All I hear from your "camp" is complaints about regulation and also complaints about attorneys ruining this country.

Well, there is difference between having the law protect you and having abusive attorney's with frivolous law suits, I agree we need some tort reform to some extent.

Also, regulation is absolutely necessary. I don't want my family eating poison aspirin so that I can watch them die and then go sue Bayer and get their $$ worth. I want drug companies to have regulation of their production and testing standards.

LoL..this one always makes me laugh, so I wonder how all that regulation in the drug industry is working. Prescription Drugs are ranked among the third leading cause of deaths in America and lawsuits due to side effects rank among the highest pay outs in the legal system. The FDA is one of biggest failures next to Social Security and Medicare out there. Vioxx, Bextra,Zelnorm,Tysabri, NeutroSpec, Cylert, Permax, Baycol, & Palladone, just to name a few. Yeah, you keep trusting in bureaucrats that have no interest in your real protection and get their funding from the very same companies they are to police. All of this of course this is just covering the Drug aspect of their protection, I haven't even mentioned how ineffective they are in monitoring Food safety, due to corporate giants like ADM and Monsanto who have more money then God and buy off any petty little bureaucrat who might cause a problem on the food issues.

According to the FDA, if you think a prescription drug you took for headaches caused your heart attack, you cannot sue the manufacturer if the drug met agency standards. Similarly, the federal Consumer Product Safety Commission says you can't sue a mattress maker if your mattress meets CPSC standards -- even if it bursts into flame. The principle could be extended to apply to any product meeting federal safety standards, such as cars and trucks.

Plaintiffs' attorneys are calling this increasingly common claim "silent tort reform." It could place new limits on the rights of those who buy or use products -- and save billions of dollars for companies insulated from lawsuits.

Consumer groups point out that these assertions mean the federal agency rules override state product liability laws. But when has the Federal Govt known any limits to it's power.

You anti-regulation people never take into consideration the start-up company that makes a product that is EXTREMELY harmful to the users... and then goes bankrupt after the first couple of lawsuits. What about the thousands of others who, now, have no one to sue? Where is the invisible hand of the market to correct that atrocity? I'd rather it didnt happen in the first place. Regulation is a necessary evil.

I's called responsibility...try having some...if a company starts up and tries to sell you something do some research yourself first and figure out if they are worth trusting. I mean most people do more research on what car or phone they buy then the stuff they put in their bodies.

RE: Just great!
By tastyratz on 9/18/2010 1:43:59 AM , Rating: 2
Your comments on the failures of the system in place now are duly noted. While the system in place is corrupt, full of holes, and in dire need of reform - it's still a system in place. It certainly beats the wild west of nothing at all.

Does it need change? of course. As long as the government is overseen by men and men are corrupt you will see it in every form of government here to eternity.

Your comment on responsibility only carries so much weight. An educated consumer can make a purchased based on research at their disposal but is in no way a subject matter on each individual product purchased. We rely on these regulations and safeguards to help weed out the market and leave us with more appropriate choices than not. It might not eliminate all problems but it certainly does eliminate many.

As far as this being government run?

We have 2 options:
1 privatize and tax the crap out of it to make money or
2. remain government operated and keep the proceeds.

Given the current state of broadband I think a government run operation will give the private companies a run for their money. The market is not a free market. If exclusive rights were outlawed and competition could exist we would see far better broadband adoption and pricing. This at least is another option second to that, and competition.

If government run 100 meg wifi across the us existed at a reasonable price then private companies would have to either offer faster cheaper internet or roll over and give up - I think they will pick option 1. In the end, the consumer wins here much more than they do now.

RE: Just great!
By AEvangel on 9/21/2010 8:41:04 PM , Rating: 2
Your comment on responsibility only carries so much weight. An educated consumer can make a purchased based on research at their disposal but is in no way a subject matter on each individual product purchased. We rely on these regulations and safeguards to help weed out the market and leave us with more appropriate choices than not. It might not eliminate all problems but it certainly does eliminate many.

I disagree, you can effectively have other private entities provide the needed regulatory function that Govt provides with less corruption then our current system, which is mainly geared to protect the corporation. In fact if you were to allow private industry to create regulatory bodies that would be funded by consumers who CHOOSE to subscribe to this service. Then the company would then publish their reviews on products something like Good Housekeeping or Consumer Reports does now. If they were corrupt and published misleading or fraudulent information then no one would buy their services, they would go out of business and some other more trust worthy company would step up. This is similar to most of your review sites out on the internet today, while some are funded by companies they are quickly discovered as corporate shills and not given any credence.

I still stand by my statement that this is about personal responsibility and if you give away your right to personal ownership of your actions and decisions expecting some other group to protect you then you are nothing more then a slave to them and their whims.

The core of the issue here is that everyone has been educated, mainly by Govt and the media to believe that all businesses are out solely for profit with no concern for the consumer. This concept is inherently flawed since any company with this mentality would soon find it self with out a consumer to survive off of since their product would have either killed them all or been proven so deadly no one would buy it.

While this has nothing to do with the original article it is interesting to talk about.

In regards to Local City run internet, as long as the Federal Govt and State Govt protect these corporations from competition then what other choice do we have.

"This week I got an iPhone. This weekend I got four chargers so I can keep it charged everywhere I go and a land line so I can actually make phone calls." -- Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg

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