Missouri-based Gateway Fiber is stretching its legs outside of the state to break ground on fresh fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) projects in Minnesota. In February 2023, Gateway Fiber was acquired by CBRE Investment Management in part to help finance FTTH build-outs as the team prepares for national expansion. John Meyer, Chief Marketing Officer at Gateway, said that the team found that the Minnesota specifically markets around Minneapolis, fit into its internal formula. Meyer said that the decision to enter Minnesota next was unrelated to the state’s federal grant monies.
There are a large number of wireless and wired telecommunications trade associations; so many that it can be hard to keep track. Fierce Telecom created this list of the most well-known trade groups in the industry.
Think about internet access in a community like a plate of crumbly cookies: Even if an internet service provider (ISP) takes a big bite out of each of the treats by servicing most addresses, the plate will still have broken pieces left behind. Such is the logic for statewide line extension programs around the US. The purpose of these programs is connecting homes and businesses just out of reach of existing last-mile i
About 27 percent of households in rural West Virginia currently lack access to 25/5 Mbps internet speeds. The US Department of the Treasury disbursed West Virginia’s $136.3 million in Capital Projects Funds (CPF) dollars in May 2023—and the entirety of the funding is going towards broadband access initiatives across the state. Since all broadband solutions throughout the state pose unique challenges because of topography, there is a case to lean into what is considered a superior solution anyway: fiber. “At this point, it’s as future-proof as you can get.
Across the country, broadband advocates and representatives are crunching numbers to figure out how to implement an often under-examined piece of the Broadband, Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) program puzzle: What does digital equity look like? Passed alongside BEAD as part of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), the Digital Equity Act (DEA) provides $2.75 billion dollars that will be parsed between states and territories to help them implement digital equity plans.
GoNetspeed President and CEO Richard Clark calculates that the founding team behind the provider holds about 100 years of experience in broadband operations and construction. The freshly-consolidated GoNetspeed is focused on rolling out one product and one product only: fiber. Each of the companies that merged under the GoNetspeed umbrella historically operated in varying states, but as of 2023, their footprint comprises communities in Maine, Alabama, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Missouri, New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and West Virginia.
Operators across the board have already flagged rising deployment costs related to inflation, geopolitical issues, and labor shortages. And it’s no secret that shipping delays of all stripes have plagued construction projects across the nation since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Between international shipping container delays, shortages of truckers, the steady climb of the price of diesel, and rising interest rates from the Federal Reserve, it would seem that telecom is slated to take a serious hit in costs
How much impact will the Broadband, Equity, Access and Deployment (BEAD) Program—and the connectivity it brings—have on the poorest, most underserved pockets of the country? “Broadband deployment in this country has been market-driven, with private sector telephone and cable companies investing in areas that provide higher rates of return,” said Kathryn de Wit, Project Director for the Broadband Access Initiative with the Pew Charitable Trusts. “Profit and return are important to the long-term operation of networks, even for ISPs receiving government subsidies.
Peter Dresslar, a broadband and digital equity consultant for both the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) and American Samoa, is of two minds. While he knows that the Federal Communications Commission is working as hard as it can to deliver accurate broadband maps to the country, some of the oversights in the mapping of the Pacific Territories have been darkly comic.
As the US government slowly works its way toward allocating $42.5 billion in broadband funding and concerns about Federal Communication Commission's broadband maps reach a fever pitch, the most marginalized communities in unserved locales are waiting.