Real stuff

Verizon’s acting like the Internet bubble never burst, according this article in Bidness Week that was linked over at Hit and Run:

“When you’re the market leader,” says Seidenberg, “part of your responsibility is to reinvent the market.”

At the heart of this reinvention is the most ambitious deployment of new telecom technology in years. Verizon plans to roll out fiber-optic connections to every home and business in its 29-state territory over the next 10 to 15 years, a project that might reasonably be compared with the construction of the Roman aqueducts. It will cost $20 billion to $40 billion, depending on how fast equipment prices fall, and allow the lightning-fast transmission of everything from regular old phone service to high-definition TV.

No “World of Hippies” propaganda, just the facts.

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9 Responses to Real stuff

  1. j says:

    I was once told by a veteran Verizon wireless sales guy why Asia and Europe always seem to be so far ahead of the US with regards to high-speed residential connectivity, and cell technologies.

    His answer was that in the US, companies know that the public won’t demand the latest/greatest as much as in the other continents, and because of that, they can stay behind in terms of costs with older technologies and milk the US out of every last cent, just because they know they will pay it.

    of course, it’s a complex topic of why you hear of 10mb pipes to houses in Tokyo, but can’t get nearly as that in SF or NYC.

    sounds like this is great news from Verizon. Here’s hoping it actually happens.

  2. John Thacker says:

    Decent point j, although it’s an open question whether the US was better off skipping widespread consumer adoption of both laserdisc and ISDN, which occurred in Japan. Occasionally it does not make sense to demand the latest and greatest.

  3. Pete says:

    ?Verizon’s acting like the Internet bubble never burst.?

    Well, Richard, isn?t that a good thing? I?ve always contended that ?the economy? is not some vague phenomenon ?out there? in the world somewhere, but that it is simply comprised of you and me (and corporations) acting in the marketplace, regardless of any broad-brush labels.

  4. Rick Mave says:

    Not one to jump on the ?latest/greatest? bandwagon either, I still must observe that neither did US consumers skip adoption of products like the Edsel, BETAMAX video, luggable PC?s (like Osborne?s) and a whole host of other such obsolescence.

    But so what?

    Wireless has proven itself to be enough of a ?here to stay? technology that it can safely be categorized as being beyond the experimental ?latest/greatest? stage, don?t you think? To wit: the ubiquity of cell phones, the WiFi inculcation of Paris, France, just to name a few.

  5. I think Verizon’s plans are great, and I hope they go forward with them. Fiber optics have a lot more promise for the neighborhood and small business markets than any form of wireless, and the more data we can pump through pipes, the less distracted the wireless airspace is as well.

    Unfortunately, the “World of Hippies” partisans will complain if they have the nerve to charge for any of this stuff, but that’s another issue.

  6. j says:

    now be nice, Richard. I actually agreed with all of your last comment. I’d cross all of my fingers and toes and piss on a sparkplug if I thought it might help Verizon get that done. I agreed with your comment up until the last sentence, which sounds like it’s only there to poke at some people with a stick.

    I have no problem paying for bandwidth, and I don’t think either Lessig or Searls thinks that it will ever be or even *should* be absolutely free of charge, either. I don’t see anywhere in the Cluetrain or any other e2e-supporting docoument that says that bandwidth or network services should cost zero…..not even RMS expects that.

    Beer and speech, Richard…you of all people know the difference.

  7. I’m allergic to beer, but I speak just fine.

    The World of Ganja dudes complain about asymmetic access networks, so I assume they want them re-engineered to offer symmetric service, which non-music-stealing customers don’t care about, with no increase in price.

    After all, “Information wants to be Free!”

  8. j says:

    ah. too bad about the beer allergy.

    again, if you can resist the urge to imagine Richard Stallman waving an enormous flag…the “world of ends” folk don’t expect anything to be free of charge. I think you’re sorta stretching a bit there with assuming that they do.

    I thought you said you’re coming up with a review of Lessig’s latest ? Did you skip the part where he expresses his distaste for stealing music ?

    the distinction is made in the popular phrase “free as in speech, not as in beer”. They might be ‘information-freedom-lovers’ or whatever you want to call them, but expecting things to be free *of charge* is something they do not do.

    this idea that Lessig and company expect and want things to be free of charge is actually a very widespread misunderstanding, even though it’s incorrect. Hilary Rosen and others like her have mistaken Lessig as being someone who insists on some sort of Utopian Internet where there is flowers, peace, and everything is free of financial cost. Such misunderstandings (lump them in with Searls’ writings as well) are perfect examples of the “binary thinking” that is found in critics’ rants of their writings. It’s not “all or none”, and Lessig goes to great lengths to get that idea across.

    p.s. as a side note…if any of the proponents of the ‘world of ends’ *were” ganja smokers, I hardly doubt it would put them in terrible company, given what communities made major contributions to technology in the 70s and 80s. :) (people from places like Berkeley, Cambridge, etc.)

  9. Good point about the ganja; it would do Lessig a lot of good to mellow out a little bit.

    There’s an enormous contradiction between declarations that copyright of some limited sort is good and a wholesale campaign against the enforcement of copyright law on the Internet, and I suspect this motivates the RIAA’s lobbyist to come down on the anti-Lessig side.

    I’m working on my review of “Future of Ideas”, and you can expect it to come out shortly.

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