Items tagged with ISP

No need to brace yourself for this one, but in case you were wondering, Americans are typically dissatisfied with their cable and Internet service providers (ISPs). That won't be shocking to most, but lest there was any doubt, numbers from the American Consumer Satisfaction Index show that cable companies and ISPs are doing a poor job keeping their customers happy. The survey pings users for their experience regarding picture quality; high definition picture quality; ease of use of remote controls, cable boxes, and onscreen menus; interactions with the call center; and other topics that can make... Read more...
More or less as expected, the FCC voted to advance the new net neutrality rules that would allow ISPs to charge certain web companies more for “fast lanes” for content. It’s a decision that net neutrality advocates are unhappy with because they see it as an unhealthy compromise, while net neutrality opponents are annoyed at the open provisions these rules leave open. The vote went 3-2 along party lines, with FCC chairman Tom Wheeler apparently doing enough to convince the other two democrats on the committee to vote along with him. Tom Wheeler This is by no means the end of political... Read more...
The future of television is upon us. With pay-TV transforming, slowly but surely, service providers have little choice but to come to grips with the realities surrounding their business. More and more individuals are growing up on a steady entertainment diet of Netflix and YouTube, and once they grab jobs and own homes, they aren't as likely to pull the trigger on cable as their parents were. Now, a handful of smaller pay-TV companies are planning to bake Netflix into their offerings, and it could trigger a domino effect that'll sweep across the industry. Atlantic Broadband, Grande Communications... Read more...
The FCC has confirmed that it will hold a May 15 vote on a new set of policies governing net neutrality and ISP behavior -- but according to the Wall Street Journal, the commission's proposed regulation will effectively kill the idea of a level playing field. The Wall Street Journal reports that the proposed rules would prevent ISPs from blocking specific websites, but would allow them to charge services like Netflix an additional fee for better access to end users. The paper claims that all "commercially reasonable" agreements would be permitted, with deals investigated on a case-by-case basis... Read more...
It looks like rumors that hit the Web a couple of months ago have proven true: Comcast has just upgraded its Blast package from 50Mbps to 105Mbps - an increase of 6.25MB/s to 13.13MB/s in megabyte terms. As a free upgrade, this kind of jump is nothing short of "awesome", although some might balk at the lack of an upload increase - it remains at 10Mbps (1.25MB/s). Earlier rumors said that a couple of Comcast's other packages would be seeing a boost as well, but so far, those haven't been reflected. Performance, the package that offers 25Mbps speeds, was said to jump to 50Mbps, and Extreme, from... Read more...
Over the past 12 months, Netflix performance has been dropping steadily across most of the major ISPs. Comcast, Verizon, and Time Warner Cable have all recorded significant performance drop-offs. The issue has been particularly acute on Verizon, where measured bandwidth rates have fallen a high of 2.3Mbps in October 2013 to 0.97Mbps in January, 2014. Now additional information suggests that Verizon and the backbone carrier Cogent are in the middle of a nasty dispute over who should pay for carrying bandwidth. We've seen this play out before between Level 3 and Comcast; that argument eventually... Read more...
The fight over net neutrality is ongoing, and the most recent punch thrown took the form of a letter that several U.S. senators, including Senator Al Franken, wrote to new FCC chairman Tom Wheeler, urging him to act quickly to fight back against a recent court ruling that vacated the anti-discrimination and anti-blocking portions of the order. “The Court’s ruling threatens the freedom of innovators to compete on an open, neutral platform,” reads the letter. “Without rules to preserve fair competition--rules to bar Internet networks operators from discriminating against one... Read more...
Over the past few weeks, net neutrality has seen serious challenges from the likes of Verizon and AT&T. Verizon won a court case in which the FCC's rules on net neutrality were effectively gutted, while AT&T introduced a new pricing plan for content providers called Sponsored Data, which pushes companies like Netflix to pay an additional per-user fee to have video streams not count against that users' bandwidth. Everyone has been curious about how Netflix might respond to this, and now the company's CEO has tendered his answer in a letter to shareholders. CEO Reed Hastings has challenged... Read more...
Not all ISPs are built alike, a fact that's been proven time and time again ever since the broadband era began. But today, that matters more than ever. We're streaming video, music, and in some cases, even games. We need reliable Internet, and we need an ISP that's willing to deliver that. Finding a good ISP isn't too difficult nowadays, what with the vast amount of information online, and not to mention services like Speedtest.net. But, another source of information can never hurt, right? Especially when that source is Google, which sends mind-boggling amounts of bandwidth to millions of people... Read more...
You’d think that if you lived in Mountain View, home of Google, you’d have killer Internet access. And if you were living there several years ago you’d be right, as the search giant installed free WiFi all over the city in 2006. It was no doubt a delightful perk, at least until last year when the citywide WiFi reportedly suddenly began flaking out. "The city has received many complaints in recent months regarding the performance and reliability of the free Google Wi-Fi system in Mountain View, particularly at our library," Kimberly Thomas, assistant to the city manager in Mountain... Read more...
Google is shaking up the ISP field in a big way with its Google Fiber service, and some of the fruit it has shaken loose pertains to AT&T launching a competing service in Austin, which Google has slated as one of the cities to get its gigabit Internet and TV service soon. AT&T is launching a 100% fiber network that promises gigabit speeds under its U-Verse brand (with GigaPower) along with high-end TV services that include HD-ready whole-home DVR (for up to 8 TVs), which is a step toward competing directly with Google’s Internet-and-TV package. AT&T is looking to beat Google to... Read more...
Months after Google surprisingly selected Provo, Utah as one of the first cities to get the Google Fiber treatment, and weeks after the city officially closed the deal with Google, the search giant-come-ISP said in a blog post that service is coming by the end of the year. Before that happens, though, Google needs to upgrade Provo’s existing fiber network--the city’s expensive fiber-optic “iProvo” network was in need of rescue--and also work with managers of larger properties to get everything hooked up. “We’re spending a lot of time talking with property managers... Read more...
Anyone who has tried to host their own website from home likely knows all-too-well the hassles that ISPs can cause. Simply put, ISPs generally don't want you to do that, preferring you to move up to a business package (aka: more expensive). Not surprisingly, the EFF doesn't like these rules, which seem to exist only to upsell you a product, and it's making its complaints very public. This time around, Google's Fiber service is targeted, as it's the latest ISP of the bunch to say "No!" to running your own "server" from home. The problem, though, is that all ISPs are deliberately vague about... Read more...
At the moment, the rollout of gigabit Internet services, arguably spearheaded by Google last summer, has been modest. However, as we discussed just last week, it does seem to be picking up in pace, and with a fantastic side-effect: other ISPs are taking notice, and that's bound to mean good things for the consumer. With an announcement made by Verizon earlier today, this is already becoming evident. How does 500Mbit/s down and 100Mbit/s up sound? That's what Verizon is planning to rollout to seemingly all of its FiOS markets in the near-future, and it's sure excited to tell you all about it; the... Read more...
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