All Broadband Is Fiber, The Only Difference Is How Deep It Goes

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Let me start this post off with a simple statement: all broadband is fiber.

Now, some fiber-to-the-home advocates might cringe when I say this as they feel it's unfair for advanced cable and DSL systems to claim they're fiber, and in fact Verizon has won rulings against cable operators for doing exactly that.

But let's reconsider this posture for a moment.

To start with, we need to acknowledge that the Internet is essentially a series of interconnected fiber networks crisscrossing the country and circling the globe delivering data at the speed of light.

We can then define broadband as the access networks that connect us to the Internet.

A commonality of all broadband technologies is that to be able to deliver next generation levels of services requires driving fiber deeper into networks, especially when it comes to DSL and wireless.

A primary difference between the performance characteristics of the various flavors of broadband then is how close they're bringing fiber to the end user. This is even true for wireless as service improves the closer antennae are to users and the more robust the backhaul networks are.

With this context we can now define fiber-to-the-home as bringing the full power of the Internet to your front door.

It's my belief that we can take back control over the word "fiber" if we start framing things in this way.

Instead of lamenting and debating the use of fiber in broadband advertising, let's redefine the terms of engagement by educating policymakers and consumers on the significance of fiber as it relates to broadband.

I want to see a day where everyone starts asking the question, "So how close does your broadband solution bring fiber to me and my neighbors?"

And this is the question that matters most when it comes to insuring America has the broadband infrastructure necessary to support all that the 21st century economy makes possible.

So instead of demonizing profit-motivated providers, let's unify our efforts to promote a multi-faceted pro-fiber agenda that supports the upgrading of all of our country's broadband infrastructure through the deeper deployment of fiber.

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This page contains a single entry by Geoff Daily published on March 16, 2011 10:30 AM.

How America's Lack Of Broadband Ambition Is Hurting Australia was the previous entry in this blog.

AT&T; + T-Mobile = More Questions Than Answers is the next entry in this blog.

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