Economists Put the Tab at $61 Billion to Bring Fiber Broadband to Rural US
The cost to deploy fiber to unserved US rural areas is about $61 billion, said Jim Stegeman, president of CostQuest Associates, an economic consultancy that specializes in telecommunication. CostQuest created the cost model used to determine broadband deployment costs for the Connect America Fund (CAF) subsidy program. The $61 billion estimated cost to deploy fiber to unserved U.S. rural areas is based on deploying GPON fiber-to-the-premises technology and does not include ongoing operational costs. Stegeman is the co-author, along with Steve G. Parsons, president of Parsons Applied Economics, of a new white paper intended to educate readers about the need for subsidies for rural broadband. Stegeman and Parsons estimate that without subsidies, service providers throughout a large portion of the US would have to charge more than $70 a month for broadband service, including a substantial number that would have to charge more than $200 a month.
Economists Put the Tab at $61 Billion to Bring Fiber Broadband to Rural U.S.