Fiber-optic Connections to Improve Internet Speed, But Only for Some

By May 28, 2008 1 comment

The evolution of high-speed Internet undoubtedly leaves some with older, slower versions, but with new improvements in fiber-optic connections many will see an even bigger divide between those with faster and slower connections.

Existing broadband connections use cable and telephone lines to connect to houses, and though the speed at which they bring the Internet is fast, utilizing the fiber-optic lines that create the base for internet connections and directly connecting them to houses could make the Internet up to 100 times faster.

Within the last 10 years, cable and phone lines have connected up to 90% of U.S. households, but the outlook for fiber-optic connections is much slimmer.

Fiber-optic lines are primarily used by only 17 states, and an overwhelming number of these houses are connected through Verizon, as it is the only major communications company to be in the process of replacing traditional copper lines with fiber-optics.

According to research company RVA LLC, Verizon controls 1.8 million of the 2.9 million American homes that are connected to the Internet with fiber-optic lines.

The majority of these households are in California, Texas, and the East Coast, meaning most of the country will be using broadband connections when a small, lucky percentage are able to use a faster fiber-optic connection.

According to research company Heavy Reading, by 2012 about 13% of U.S. households will be connected through fiber-optic lines, leaving the vast majority of the country out.

It also means Verizon will be in higher demand, possibly increasing its outreach to more households and prompting its competitors to change to fiber-optic lines from copper.

Fiber-optics will make the resolutions of videos and games much more detailed than they currently are, improving video communications and making gaming more realistic than it already is.

By Danny Scuderi
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1 Comment

Good Grief. I just tried to get fiber for my business in San Francisco - can't find anything at a reasonable price.

The service providers are just milking their DSL lines for all the cash they can get while failing to upgrade to the next generation.

The United States in now 13th globally in high-speed internet access. This makes us a competitive joke.

Google recently announced a high-speed fiber initiative. But we can't rely on Google to save us from every technological deficiency this country has to offer. It's time for some proper public policy in these areas.

The existing service providers are effective monopolies - they need to be required to have a fiber plan and roll-out timing in exchange for continuing to be my monopoly provider.

Submitted by Simon (not verified) - on February 15, 2010 at 12:09 pm

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