Time Warner Cable Weakly Swipes at Google Fiber Rollout in Austin

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News Posted: Sat, Apr 27 2013 3:09 PM
The rollout of Google Fiber in a given location must feel like an impending tidal wave to the competition, which generally offers slower Internet speeds at higher prices (and often with frustrating customer service) than the search giant-come-ISP, and we’ve discussed before how this development has put the industry on notice.

Time Warner Cable doesn’t plan to take Google Fiber’s disruption lying down, and its Director of Digital Communications, Jeff Simmermon, has taken to the corporate blog to let everyone know just what the company is doing to stay competitive.

In Austin, the big news is: TWC is deploying free WiFi hotspots in the city. That’s it.

Time Warner Cable truck
Too little, too late TWC

A few years ago, free municipal WiFi was a big deal, but most people have 3G-equipped smartphones these days and can often tether to create a personal WiFi hotspot for their non-3G tablets and notebooks. Further, part of Google Fiber is free 5Mbps WiFi for all, so “free WiFi” doesn’t sound all that impressive, anyway.

In Kansas City, the first area to get Google Fiber service, we’ve heard that TWC was fighting for its customers one by one, by offering customers faster Internet speeds and reductions on their bills. (The specific example we heard about was a fellow who saw his speed jump from 10Mbps to 15 Mbps and his bill drop from $44.94 to $29.99.)

If TWC thinks that the above would in any way dissuade someone from rolling with Google Fiber, they’re either completely full of it or are suffering from a bad case of cognitive dissonance. The fact of the matter is that Google is blowing up the ISP market, and current ISPs are going to have to adapt quickly and radically to survive.
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3vi1 replied on Sat, Apr 27 2013 3:38 PM

Time Warner has met their match: A company with enough money to lay an infrastructure that is beyond the capabilities of the company that reaped money for years and did nothing. I have no pity for Time Warner.

Pro Tip: If your neighbors have a google connection and a really crappy internet router. YOU have a google connection.

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?

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3vi1 replied on Sat, Apr 27 2013 3:38 PM

Time Warner has met their match: A company with enough money to lay an infrastructure that is beyond the capabilities of the company that reaped money for years and did nothing. I have no pity for Time Warner.

Pro Tip: If your neighbors have a google connection and a really crappy internet router. YOU have a google connection.

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?

++++++++++++[>++++>+++++++++>+++>+<<<<-]>+++.>++++++++++.-------------.+++.>---.>--.

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3vi1 replied on Sat, Apr 27 2013 3:39 PM

I hit reply twice, and cant delete this. please forgive.

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?

++++++++++++[>++++>+++++++++>+++>+<<<<-]>+++.>++++++++++.-------------.+++.>---.>--.

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maietta replied on Sat, Apr 27 2013 3:44 PM

... 5Mbps WiFi ???

I'm paying $60/mo to have 1.5mbit DSL from Windstream. It's my only option where i am at, unless i want to get ripped off by the Satellite providers.

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JFarrell replied on Sat, Apr 27 2013 4:01 PM

Now, Time Warner is competing very strongly with the telco. TW has always known that cable subscribers could have added WiFi access to internet throughout Austin and it would cost TW next to nothing to help its users avoid being slammed for data use while out and about. Now that Google has made evident the irrationally high internet data charges of ATT, Time Warner users could get mad at TW and drop their service before dropping ATT.

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mhenriday replied on Sat, Apr 27 2013 8:19 PM

David Talbot has published an analysis of the effects of Google's fibre rollout on the competition om the MIT Technology Review website. Interestingly enough, he finds that even if only a few customers sign up - Google isn't saying, but Akamai estimates that in Kansas last year, Google served fewer than a thousand subscribers - the offer itself seems to exert significant pressure on hitherto monopolistic/duopolistic ISPs to clean up their act....

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mhenriday replied on Sat, Apr 27 2013 8:24 PM

Oops, the link above was lost ; here's the article URL : http://www.technologyreview.com/news/514176/google-fibers-ripple-effect/....

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rapid1 replied on Sat, Apr 27 2013 9:31 PM

ROFL Time-Warner Cable cannot compete against Fibre neither can Comcast or Cox or any other cable provider when it comes down to it in the end. Fibre swallows Coax whole bandwidth and channel wise. If Google does not do it first whomever or which ever company figures this out and starts a truly wide scale outlay will own the US data wise. It really makes no sense as I believe ATT should have figured this all out before GOOGLE got in the game because if they do not get something going Google will wipe the floor with all of them city by city by city.

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ajm531 replied on Sat, Apr 27 2013 9:41 PM

oh time warner please jump on sane wagon and get some fiber service

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Kidbest100 replied on Sat, Apr 27 2013 11:23 PM

Yay! Go Google fiber! :D

Time-Warner is one of the worst ISP's I've ever seen XD

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Brian replied on Sun, Apr 28 2013 12:05 AM

GO GOOGLE!!!!! I cannot wait to see Google come to Akron, Ohio one day!

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The history of the telecom industry and broadband is rife with corruption, deception and outright fraud. The majority of the U.S. was supposed to already be connected with fiber optics, and we citizens enjoying relatively inexpensive high-speed connections. In fact, we already paid for it, but never got it. For the full story, there is an excellent e-book available for free download here: http://www.newnetworks.com/broadbandscandals.htm. Unless Google really ramps up their fiber deployment, they aren't a true threat to the status quo. No broadband providers are going to react to them, except in the immediate areas affected. And even if Google fiber becomes ubiquitous, we will just be at the mercy of a new monopoly (or rather a new manifestation of an existing monopoly). What prices will we be paying if Google becomes the only game in town?

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mhenriday replied on Sun, Apr 28 2013 9:28 AM

From what I understand, Mr Donaldson, you're quite right about the corruption, deceit and fraud so prevalent in the telecom industry in the US - hardly surprising given the amount of money these firms can bring to bear on the political system («the best governments [local, state, and federal] money can buy», as the saying goes) to see that their interests, not those of ordinary consumers, are uppermost in the minds of «regulators» and legislators. But Google's interests here differ fundamentally from those of the ISPs ; what the former want is as many people eyeballing as many advertisements as possible, so that the firm can profit from their clicks. For that reason, they do have an interest in seeing to it that relatively cheap high-speed fibre cable becomes widely available to consumers, and they are not adverse to attempting to disturb the prevailing equilibrium, just as they tried to do, with, alas, scant success, with the Nexus One, which, as I read it, was an attempt to break providers' stranglehold over the smartphone market. Hope they make a better go of it this time 'round - if people in the US become aware of the fact that it is possible to have high-speed connexions at a reasonable price, they just might become angry enough to begin to demand them of their providers and, not least, their politicians....

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Clixxer replied on Sun, Apr 28 2013 8:09 PM

God reading this just makes me glad I do not work for TWC anymore. I know Austin their infrastructure sucks absolute balls! In Dallas it is possible to get Gbps from them but only to commercial and at the cost of about $1200-1600 a month. TWC in Dallas went and put fiber everywhere to run higher speeds but their equipment and system just isn't caught up. 

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digitaldd replied on Mon, Apr 29 2013 9:22 AM

If I could get TV & internet for $45 a month I'd jump on that, even if the internet speed topped out at like 3Mbps down/384Kbps up. 

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