AT&T and Frontier have let phone networks fall apart, California regulator finds

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AT&T and Frontier have let their copper phone networks deteriorate through neglect since 2010, resulting in poor service quality and many lengthy outages, a report commissioned by the California state government found. Customers in low-income areas and areas without substantial competition have fared the worst, the report found. AT&T in particular was found to have neglected low-income communities and to have imposed severe price increases adding up to 152.6 percent over a decade. The report was written in April 2019 but kept private because data submitted by the carriers was deemed confidential and proprietary. The report finally became public after the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) ruled in Dec 2020 that a redacted version had to be released by mid-Jan. Six key findings:

  1. Service quality has deteriorated
  2. Demonstrated lack of resiliency — AT&T & Frontier are not maintaining networks to withstand environmental and weather-related conditions.
  3. Disinvestment in Plain Old Telephone Service (POTS)
  4. Increased investment in broadband improves POTS service quality
  5. AT&T is focusing on higher income communities
  6. Direct relationship between amount of competition and service quality results

AT&T and Frontier have let phone networks fall apart, Calif. regulator finds Read the Report