The Federal Communications Commission is set to propose new open Internet rules that would allow content companies to pay for faster delivery over the so-called "last mile" connection to people's homes, but enhance scrutiny of such deals so they don't harm competition or limit free speech.
MCNC, the operator of the statewide North Carolina Research and Education Network, is adding capabilities to its own fiber and data infrastructure in a deal with Durham-based Sentinel Data Centers.
The move comes amid rapid growth in online video services. AT&T, a telecoms giant, already offers TV content through its U-Verse service, which competes with more traditional cable TV providers. With online video, though, it could attract customers of Netflix, Hulu, YouTube and other services - including people who've stopped paying for traditional broadcast, cable or satellite TV.
AT&T says it will expand super-fast Internet services to as many as 100 additional cities in 25 metropolitan areas, several of which are in the Triangle and North Carolina. Apex, Garner and Morrisville have been added to the Triangle target list that already includes Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, Carborro and Cary.
The Raleigh City Council on Wednesday authorized the city manager and attorney to contract with AT&T to bring the communications provider's next-generation internet and cable service to local residents.
RST Fiber began installing the fiber Tuesday that the company says will bring internet speeds up to 100 times faster than cable to Triangle-area homes.
Both Google and Facebook have launched ambitious projects that aim to get everyone on the planet online. Google's Project Loon sends giant balloons bearing Internet-beaming antennas into the stratosphere. Facebook, meanwhile, leads Internet.org, a coalition of companies that wants to get everyone in the world access to basic Internet service.
Netflix's videos are streaming through Comcast's Internet service at their highest speeds in 17 months, thanks to a recent deal that bought Netflix a more direct connection to Comcast's network. The data released Monday by Netflix Inc. may become another flash point in a debate about whether the Federal Communications Commission should draw up new rules to ensure that all online content providers are treated the same by Internet service providers.
Broadband discussions were plentiful at national events held last week in Denver and Austin. MCNC President and CEO Joe Freddoso talks about his travels and how the country's future relies on gigabit infrastructure.
The race to be first to bring gigabit-speed Internet access across the Triangle and Triad may be won by AT&T, not Time Warner Cable or Google Fiber. The North Carolina Next Generation Network consortium says it is recommending that six city governments approve AT&T's proposal. However, the group is not precluding other companies from the project.
Early Thursday, the North Carolina Next Generation Network consortium issued a full statement explaining why it is recommending that six cities in the Triangle and the Triad "enthusiastically approved" support for AT&T's proposal to create an ultra-fast Internet network for the region.
Comcast says the $45 billion takeover will allow it to boost Internet speeds for Time Warner Cable Inc. customers, provide better video on demand service and broaden its commitment to "Net neutrality" -- the idea that Internet providers should not discriminate against web traffic.
The Broadband Report: Internet2 will launch a university-based initiative in conjunction with Innova UEV Inc. this week in Denver to provide four unique data-gathering electric vehicles to campuses across the country.
AT&T said Friday that between 2011 and 2013, wireless and wireline investments in Durham and Chapel Hill totaled more than $90 million with more than $1.6 billion spent all across North Carolina networks.
The Broadband Report: The Broadband Commission for Digital Development said last week that access to broadband could be the universal catalyst that lifts developing countries out of poverty and puts access to health care, education and basic social services within the reach of all.