The conversations surrounding broadband in the USA are as varied as
ever. Some say the US is number one. Some say the US is lacking
severely. The FCC--which is one of the only entities that actually has
a say that matters--thinks that money should be used to improve access
to broadband for more Americans. Apparently, so does Mr. Joe Biden.
The US Vice President took the opportunity, as the week before
Christmas wound down, to serve up the first payments towards
bettering America's broadband infrastructure. These funds had already
been set aside, and now we're seeing them head into action. A grand
total of $7 billion will be spent on getting access to more individuals
and upgrading our current networks, and as of now $183 million has been
doled out to 18 broadband projects in 17 states. Unless plans change, a
total of $2 billion in grants/loans will be sent out for broadband
projects over the next 2-3 months.
Obama's grand goal is to get broadband Internet access to every home in
America, but that will clearly be harder to accomplish than it is to
say. America is a vast nation, and some of the smaller towns and
villages are far, far away from the metro areas that are already well
served. The President and his cabinet are looking at broadband
expansion as a surefire boost in business, as more and more individuals
are able to find companies, prices, etc. online. It definitely opens up
another avenue for revenue and marketing, and we're definitely not
knocking the idea of getting high-speed Internet to everyone in the
country (should they want to pony up for it).
According to a report earlier in the year by Strategy Analytics, the US
was 20th in broadband penetration in a survey of 58 nations, but as we
stated before, another survey put America at the top
. It's hard to know
what numbers are completely correct, but it's exciting to see progress
being made on this front regardless. Too many people are forced to
suffer with limited/slow options for getting wired, and even for those
well-served, what's the harm is having a bit more competition? Nothing...