America’s National Broadband plan seems predicated on the idea that smartphones can serve poor people. The cellcos are telling Wall Street’s financial analysts and the policy makers in Washington that there are more cell phone-based internet connections in the world than fixed wireless or wireline connections. But skeptics are starting to show that those cellphones may be underused, overpriced, and come with caps. Meanwhile, cellcos’ core businesses are threatened. Prices will rise and service caps will fall. Washington — and policymakers around the world — should allocate more resources and spectrum to services that deliver true internet, not the restricted walled garden of the cellcos.
This debate was central to the fascinating discussion at the State of Telecom event at Columbia’s Instititue of Tele-Information, held in mid-October. I attended the afternoon sessions.
Continue reading ‘Smart Phone Skeptic’ »
Kansas Governor Mark Parkinson (D, formerly R) recommended most of the projects that go through his state. Parkinson obtained the seat when Kathleen Sibelius, who had worked hard for Obama, especially during the primaries, resigned to become secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, a job that became very important when swine flu hit the U.S.
Parkinson, who says he plans to step down in 2010, appears to have recommended most of the applications in the state of Kansas, including several multistate applications. Kansas is one of the few states to recommend EchoStar’s nationwide satellite deployment. The governor also recommended a large and costly cellular deployment. Several of the projects appear to overlap each other.
The state even recommended a project from Connected Nation, the telcos’ non-profit.
Continue reading ‘Kansas Recommends Many Projects’ »
Arizona Governor Jan Brewer (D) divded her 21 recommendations into three levels: Exeptional, Outstanding, and Deserving.
I could not find the letter on a government site but obtained it through the StimuluatingBroadband blog people — Pratt Networks — here.
The only Exceptional middle mile project in the letter in the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority, a roughly $34 million project, half grant and half loan, mixing fiber, microwave, and wireless. No objections to it! Looks like a good project.
Continue reading ‘Arizona Governor Brewer Recommends In Three Levels’ »