admin's blog

Why fiber?

  • Posted on: 28 May 2015
  • By: admin

One of the most common questions we get is, "Why do I want fiber?"

We've created a one page handout that may help answer that question. You can download it by clicking on the PDF icon.

Here is some of the reasons you want fiber:

  • Work from home--full time, part time, or nights/weekends. We give you the freedom to choose!
  • Run a business from home, or run a server from home.
  • Connect more TVs, laptops, computers, tablets, printers, and servers and have them all work at the speed of light!
  • Use all the bandwidth you want without worrying about slowdowns, overage charges, or data caps.
  • Watch TV, movies, sports,and video at the highest possible quality--a better entertainment experience!
  • Put home security cameras around your house and get notifications, live HD video, and sound right on your tablet or smartphone, wherever you are.
  • Connect to the Virginia Tech network or your company VPN as if you were sitting in your office at work.
  • Make full use of cloud services at blazing fast speed.
  • Seamlessly connect multiple business locations and offices.
  • Home-based employees can fully participate because videoconferencing works like it is supposed to with no stuttering, drop outs, or screen slowdowns.
  • Get an inexpensive home phone line that actually provides a high quality connection without annoying drops.
  • Fiber makes back up services like Carbonite, Amazon, and Mozy work the way they are supposed to with no waiting.

Click here to download a handout explaining the strengths of fiber.

http://www.wideopenblacksburg.net/sites/default/files/Blacksburg_why_fiber_v3.pdf

Server burp!

  • Posted on: 27 April 2015
  • By: admin

Some of you noticed our Web site went down over the weekend....it was a minor server burp that took the site off line temporarily. We got it straightened out Sunday evening. Thanks to all who were checking in!

Fiber adds value to your home!

  • Posted on: 3 April 2015
  • By: admin

Fiber adds resale value to your home. A $3500 investment in fiber can increase your property value by more than $6,000--a 180% return on your investment! Fiber is the best home improvement you can make, as it is the only type of improvement that adds more value than what you spent. Typical upgrades like a remodeled master bath, granite countertops, or a new deck will add less that you spent. Attached is a screen shot from a Render Associates nationwide study on fiber, and here is the link to the presentation with all the data.

Here is another summary of a 2014 study on fiber value.

Here is a report on typical home improvements and estimates of your likely return...typically 60% to 90%.

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What about TV?

  • Posted on: 12 March 2015
  • By: admin

Everyone is asking us about TV service. We need to pass at least 1,000 homes in Blacksburg with fiber before we think we will be able to offer a package of TV--which we absolutely want to do.

But we are also watching the death of cable TV and satellite services. A new report from Nielsen, the TV tracking firm, shows that 40% of American homes are streaming video over the Internet. This represents a 10% year to year increase. At that rate, there will be few subscribers left on cable and satellite in five more years.

But wait! There's more! The amount of TV being watched live, unsurprisingly, is also down, which makes sense. If you have a Netflix and Hulu subscription, why worry about watching something at a particular time?

What does it mean for Blacksburg? Fiber is going to be very important as more and more programming comes over the Internet. Fiber in a community is not just about economic development--it is also about quality of life, and young professionals want to live in a place with great connectivity, not old-fashioned copper networks. We want Blacksburg to have the world's best network---one that future-proofs your home and your neighborhood from obsolescence. Our fiber network, on the first day we connect your home, will have the capacity to handle HD video (5 meg per video stream), 4K video (10 Meg per video stream), and 8K video (25 Meg per video stream). It will also be able to handle any level of business class video conferencing that you might want to do from home--two way, three way, five way....need more participants? Our network can handle it. And if you want to connect to the Tech campus, it will be as if you are sitting in your office on campus...from home.

Millennials don't want traditional TV any more

  • Posted on: 19 February 2015
  • By: admin

Young people in the 18 to 34 age group continue to ignore traditional cable and satellite TV packages in favor of Internet-based Over The Top (OTT) packages like Netflix and Hulu, among others. With ESPN and HBO joining the OTT revolution, cable and satellite TV are dead, dead, dead, as live sports and specialty programs (think HBO offerings like the hugely popular Sopranos) are now available without that bloated and over-priced cable TV subscription.

The cable companies response to losing market share has been to simply switch their tired old "annual rate increase" strategy to their Internet package, while trying to cram more bandwidth onto the creaky old 20th century copper coax cable.

We have a different strategy: Build modern fiber networks and operate them as a Local Transport Provider (LTP). We are separating the infrastructure from the services completely, which opens the local network up to multiple providers and hundreds of commodity and niche services--customers pick and choose the provider and the services they want. It's called shopping for the best product at the best price. Cable TV and telephone companies are offering the 1950s Soviet economy style of business: "One product, take it or leave it, and we'll tell you what you are going to pay us."

Old model: command economy run by the giant incumbent companies with mediocre service.

New model: free market economy where the customers decides what they want to buy and how much they want to pay.

How can we do that? It's simple. The key concept is the switch to understanding the local network as the Local Transport Provider, completely separate from the Service Provider. We are unbundling the network, completely and unequivocally, which was the original goal of the 1984 and 1996 Telecom Acts.

Trust me...it's finally here, and we are revolutionizing broadband.

Welcome to the world where the Local Transport Provider puts customers first.