Skip to comments.Why Broadband Service in the U.S. Is So Awful
Posted on 10/08/2010 7:42:26 AM PDT by Sakity Yaks
The average U.S. household has to pay an exorbitant amount of money for an Internet connection that the rest of the industrial world would find mediocre. According to a recent report by the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University, broadband Internet service in the U.S. is not just slower and more expensive than it is in tech-savvy nations such as South Korea and Japan; the U.S. has fallen behind infrastructure-challenged countries such as Portugal and Italy as well....
Phone companies have to compete for your business. Even though there may be just one telephone jack in your home, you can purchase service from any one of a number of different long-distance providers. Not so for broadband Internet. Here consumers generally have just two choices: the cable company, which sends data through the same lines used to deliver television signals, and the phone company, which uses older telephone lines and hence can only offer slower service.
The same is not true in Japan, Britain and the rest of the rich world. In such countries, the company that owns the physical infrastructure must sell access to independent providers on a wholesale market. Want high-speed Internet? You can choose from multiple companies, each of which has to compete on price and service. The only exceptions to this policy in the whole of the 32-nation Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development are the U.S., Mexico and the Slovak Republic, although the Slovaks have recently begun to open up their lines....
...[T]he FCC wants to take only a half-step. Genachowski has said that although he regards the Internet as a telecommunications service, he does not want to bring in third-party competition....
(Excerpt) Read more at scientificamerican.com ...
The countries mentioned in the article are also much smaller, and much more densely populated.
BTW, Israel was free market broadband.
I don’t think that explains much, really — most of the really empty areas of the US don’t have broadband at all (and thus don’t enter into the statistics), and when you factor them out the density figures for the US and Western Europe are comparable.
Notice also those countries are much smaller too
If we pack everyone in the US into a couple of giant cities and run fiber into every housing block we could improve our bandwidth as well.
But since we are spread out, have alot of rural space, and have a government that insists on getting involved just enough to screw things up, we will lag in the bandwidth wars ...
I have pretty fast internet 19+MBPS and we get phone, cable and internet for around $100 a month. Not too expensive.
I have a similar deal with Dimhouse Cable here in Indiana.
For normal web surfing it seems fine. In the two years we’ve had it, there has only been one short term outage.
I suppose if you were doing industrial strength file transfers it might be lacking.
The only thing I miss is Sunday Ticket from when I had DirectTV at my former place.
where the heck is that?
Where I am, internet alone would run a hundred bucks a month at that speed.
looks like another Obama Administration “America Sucks!” Propaganda Story of the Day to me
I think the future is hi-speed wireless cell phone based internet anyway. America will probably skip the intermediate phases.
As I understand it, here in Canada the local phone company, typically Bell Canada here in Ontario, is required to make their lines available for other DSL providers. So, if you live in an area where DSL is generally available, you can often access DSL services from other companies besides Bell Canada, typically at lower prices. I get my internet service through my cable provider, however, mostly because at the time I first got high-speed internet the cable internet service was clearly superior to the DSL service - and may still be, depending on the area.
This is a smart set of responses. Density is the key to cheap broadband and Americans like the wide open spaces.
Time Warner Cable
I went to speedtest.net for the speed.
The problem: free markets are not compatible with government monopolies.
A more concise statement of current American policies would be difficult to imagine.
The early bird gets the worm,
But it's the second mouse that gets the cheese!
This opening paragraph is so inaccurate ... this is total crap....
I’m sorry, at this particular moment it looks like I top off at 18.49 mbps. It can vary during the day.
Upload speed is, uh, MUCH MUCH slower.
Normal web surfing for me includes watching a lot of video. heh. Thank Gawd we don’t get charged by the MB
I have 20MBps. Not exactly “mediocre”.