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29 Apr

Telecom Forecast Predicts a Tough Time Ahead for Leaders

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Recent studies on the major studio groupings and pay-TV companies reveal that there will probably not be any significant growth in their businesses. The only group that is projected to show considerable growth at this point is Netflix®.

One of the best internet service providers currently in business, AT&T® recently splashed out $85 billion to bring Time Warner® under its umbrella. Disney, meanwhile, acquired 21st Century Fox® for $71 billion. The owners of NBC-Universal®, Comcast®, purchased Sky® for $39 billion on European soil. Each of these three groups will see some effect from their huge spending as they are set to face a dry period economically. It is said that these purchases are set to hamper their efforts to attain more ground in the existing market in the streaming business.

The reports suggest that AT&T® will have a difficult time spreading its image in advertising. However, Comcast® is set to perform impressively outside the US territory in pay-TV and advertising, but might fall short in its hunt for SVoD subscribers. Disney® holds a strong ground along with ESPN+, but it too is set to face an uphill struggle in SVoD.

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The reports say that by 2014, Netflix® would become the most dominant player in the streaming domain. It is projected to earn more revenue in streaming than the three-telecom giants combined. Its market share is predicted to drop from 63 % as of 2019 to 52 % in 2024. This, however, would not stop it from claiming and holding top position.

The huge success of Netflix® has raised several questions regarding the Hollywood studios’ strategies to stay in the game. There have been several doubts on Netflix® being able to hold its dominant status on several platforms. On the other hand, it has brought the content strategies of the three big companies under the scanner. Companies like Facebook® and Apple® would also have to stay on top of their game to hold strong against Netflix®’s domineering approach.

Most of these companies would survive, but being successful is certainly not a matter that changes overnight. Comcast® and AT&T® would continue to rely on their cheap internet and cellular revenues for growth.

The big three are known to have a huge reserve of content which will keep them afloat in their respective areas. However, they would definitely struggle to become the dominant name. Disney® is projected to reach 96.5 million subscribers at the climax of this forecast period, which would take its tally to 12.5% across the world.

06 Apr

How to Find the Better Home Internet Service Providers This Year

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Home Internet Service

It is really hard these days to choose well among the different home internet service providers operating in the market, mainly because of the overwhelming number of options one has to choose from. It helps to be sure on the factors that make a difference in most of the cases. The least this would do is let you narrow down options to the providers that are good for meeting your requirements. Below are some regularly useful questions regarding ISPs which would help in picking out the perfect ISP for you.

The Area Where You Live

When it comes to choosing the best ISP, the area where you live is really important, because prices and plans vary based on this. Before considering going in for a home internet connection, you would need to search for the best plans available in your area. You may not find each and every plan or carrier in every location and therefore, in order to get a good idea of the best ones, you would first need to filter based on the location where you are based at the moment. After completing that step, the next thing you have to figure out are your priorities. Heavy internet users, as well as large families or groups using a connection simultaneously, would typically give more importance to connection speed. On the other hand, if it is the price that concerns you more, then you will have to balance different aspects and even start looking at bundle packages which are offered in your area.

The Broadband Speed You Need

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In order to find out the total amount of internet speed that you actually need, you would need to consider a number of factors, including the way you use your internet connection, the number of devices you use, and the number of people living in your home.

It would always be a wiser choice to increase the bandwidth available, especially if two or more people in your home are often trying to download videos or stream movies online at the same time. For instance, it is a good idea to get 3 mbps or higher speed for standard quality streams, 5mbps speed for HD streaming, and 25mbps speed for ultra HD streaming. If your internet connection is shared among multiple users, and there are also using multiple devices online at any given time, then you will probably need speeds between 30mbps and 50mbps. If your only use of the internet is for web browsing and getting on social media, even a relatively measly connection speed of 1mbps would be fine to work with.

30 Mar

Ways to Lower your Bills with the Help of Cheap Internet

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Money Saving Tips

It is possible for you to be happy with the current internet service you are using, but even then, it is also true that you may be paying a lot for it. However, there are actually a number of ways, by which you would be able to find a good internet connection at cheaper rates. Using these simple techniques would really be helpful for you in order to cut short your monthly bills.

Buy a Router or Modem Rather than Renting

Most of the internet provides would charge a sum of $10 to $15 every month as the rent of their equipment. Consider that you are keeping on with a single provider for about two years; then you would be paying about $240 to $360 as the total rental cost. By this, you are actually making too many additional expenses because it is indeed possible to buy a good router or modem under $200.

While you buy a modem, you would also have to keep this in mind that some internet providers do not provide troubleshooting services for personal hardware. Another thing you would have to look for is a negotiation, the game would be much better for you if you would jump for a better deal. Always keep researching the internet for promotional prices; it is always possible for another internet provider to offer better deals to new customers.

Decrease the Speed

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High-Speed Internet

Most of the internet providers of the present times offer high-speed internet connection; some may guarantee you download speeds of 100 Mbps or even more. This service would be of real help if you actually need this. For most of the families, this is not the case though. If you would lower this speed, you would be able to save about $35 from your monthly bill or even more. Note that the amount you would be able to save would completely depend on the carrier you are using.

The online activates like web browsing, music, email, and HD video streaming requires only 30 Mbps speed if you are using one to three devices at a time. If you are using about four to seven devices for this, then you may need about 70 Mbps speed connection. Since these are the proposed speeds for more number of devices, you would be able to further adjust the speed if you are using only a single device.

21 Mar

How and Why Cheap Broadband Plans Were Introduced in the US

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There are several ways to get affordable internet service, which not all people know. Some cheap internet services are only available to low-income households, but there are other subsidized plans available to anyone. In other words, you can avail the latter no matter how little you earn or how much you make.

Almost all major internet providers in the country offer cheap internet plans to low-income customers or families. In addition, FCC’s broadband adoption program also offers such plans to low-income groups.

Affordable internet is offered separately to such customers by public or private services, as long as they meet certain criteria that make them eligible to enroll for the broadband program. However, the eligibility criteria might vary from one state to the other and one program/company to the other. You might qualify for one if you have a member in your family who participates in a governmental assistance program.

Why the Internet is Offered at Cheap Prices

Not all customers in the country have access to the internet because of the relatively high cost, which they cannot afford. For those with the spending power, the cost of a standard internet plan may not seem all that high, but for low-income families, it does.

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Bridge Connectivity Gap

The cause to provide customers with cheap internet is to bridge the connectivity gap. That exists in part because the deprived section of society also does not have access to the basic facilities to access the internet, The gap between those with the privileged section of the society is more apparent than what one can imagine, hence the need to bridge the digital divide. To this end, internet service providers also take certain initiatives, such as donating laptops or computers to the deprived families. Some of the telecom giants take part in such initiatives, but not all of them do.

All this is linked to one thing: availability of the basic facilities. Cheap internet plans are made available by companies in all US states, in addition to Washington DC and Puerto Rico. The first broadband adoption program was rolled out in 2011, and it was aimed at Americans who were struggling to make their ends meet. Existing technology advancements brought new private companies into the affordable internet business, giving more options to US customers.

20 Feb

Telecom Giant in Trouble after Row with Employee

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One of the fastest internet provider in the country, Comcast® did not fail to yield to the requirements of an employee by declining to reassign her, according to a federal district court judge. The former employee had alleged that Comcast® failed to obey the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

The employee, Brenda Turcotte, had her position automated and she was transferred to another dispatch work. However, her job was not easy because of the increasing work volumes, and the number of inbound calls affected her peace of mind. As a result, she took leave and made a request to the firm regarding the reassignment of dispatch job. According to the court though, she demanded jobs that were highly similar to the dispatch job. Besides, she failed to produce medical evidence to support her request and was unsuccessful in applying for jobs internally. Finally, she became an intern at another firm, ending her commitment with Comcast®.

The judge favored the cheap internet provider Comcast® in this case because it found out that Turcotte would have ended up doing the same job as she was presently doing, even if the transfer request was accepted. The ruling remarked, “It defies logic to argue that those jobs would have been a reasonable accommodation. If she could perform this function, Comcast® would have no obligation to accommodate her at all.”

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Turcotte highlighted the importance that the court gives to the ADA’s interactive process. “Managers need to be trained to dedicate extra time and effort to employees with disabilities when determining accommodations,” David K. Fram, the director of ADA and Equal Employment Opportunity services for the National Employment Law Institute commented in an interview. According to the court, Comcast® made a reasonable effort to cope with the request and make a resolution that would satisfy both parties. It said that the HR representatives and managers dedicated time to counsel, train, retrain, and organize internal job quests alongside Turcotte.

Furthermore, there were also faults on the employee’s side, which led to the verdict. Turcotte did not respond to the company’s requests for more information. She also did not reveal her true intentions to the company. Although ADA does not say that the interactive process is mandatory, it certainly favors employers who communicate well with their employees. If the employer causes the breakdown of the process, then they would be adjudged guilty of trying to take advantage of the disability. Similarly, if there were evidence that the employee caused the breakdown, then the employer would be at an advantage.

22 Jan

4 Ways to Get Internet for a Lower Monthly Cost

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Monthly Internet Cost

Even if you are happy with your existing internet service provider, you might still be paying more for the service. Some ways to find a cheap internet service or lower your monthly bills are outlined below.

Reduce your Internet Speed

A few internet providers offer plans that promise downstream speeds of 100 megabits per second or more. However, not all residential users require that much speed. You could choose a different plan and decrease your bill by 35 dollars or more, depending upon your service provider. Determine the internet speed you want, and contact the carrier to choose a different or lower speed tier package. This speed requirement might depend on your monthly usage; if you do basic surfing and stream video and audio on a single device, you can choose an alternative plan that is lower in price.

Negotiate your Internet Bill

Tell your service provider that you have found a cheap internet plan elsewhere, and that you need to opt for it instead. Be polite yet firm enough in conveying this to your existing carrier. The better you back up this stance, the better the leverage you will have. So research promotional prices your provider and its rivals offer to new customers now – be ready to cancel the service and subscribe to another one that offers a better deal in comparison.

Bundle your Services

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If you already subscribe to cable, then you can save over 1,000 dollars in the course of two years with some service providers by bundling it with internet. Be wary of the upsell. Some operators may try to talk customers into extra speed or TV channels for 5 or 10 dollars a month. That monthly increase adds up to a bigger cost over time, and in turn defeats your main aim – to save money.

Use your Own Cable Modem as Well as Router

If you are planning to stay with one ISP for a few (contractual) years, it might be even more cost-effective to use your own equipment unit rather than renting the hardware. Many services charge 10 to 15 dollars a month to rent it. If you stay with such types of providers for a couple of years, the overall costs would be 240 to 360 dollars. You can purchase a top-rated router and modem for less than 200 dollars. Moreover, remember that some service providers will not offer support or personal hardware troubleshooting.

19 Jul

Charter Spectrum® and Cox® Bring Gigabit Speed to San Diego

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Internet Speed Upgradation

Recently, the top internet and cable TV providers in the US increased their internet speeds to gigabit in San Diego County in order to let subscribers handle growing requirements of data. The modern-day customers require speedy internet plans to access videos over several streaming platforms. That is why the cable operators are coming up with speed upgrades to the millions of households.

You might be a San Diego County resident having a cheap internet connection from any of the ISPs. Note that Comcast®, Cox®, and Charter Spectrum® have upgraded the service to gigabit speeds, so you have more options access the internet. Cox® said that the gigabit speed internet is now available in ninety-four percent of the coverage area in the county. However, Charter Spectrum® started offering the speeds back in April inside their San Diego footprint, which usually lies to its northern parts Interstate 8 and extends to Rancho Bernardo community as well as Carlsbad.

The high-speed internet is highly demanded by customers and with newer methods to stream videos over the web, ISPs can only come up with best practices such as speed upgrades and other methods to access the same. “We know YouTube is consuming a ton of data,” said the Cox® VP of Market for West Region, Suzanne Schlundt. “But there are also a lot of other devices in people’s homes.”

The gigabit internet speeds can let customers download an HD movie in a minute, a hundred songs in 3 seconds, and around 1000 photos in 60 seconds. “It used to take almost as long to download a movie as it did to watch it when you were getting ready to go on a flight,” Schlundt said. “With this, you can do it so much faster.”

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San Diego is amongst the cities with a latent demand for over-the-top or OTT video streaming from a cheap internet service provider. Many of the residential subscribers in the area have internet-supported streaming devices, which can be connected to the TV sets to stream videos.

Gigabit internet is the latest connectivity option that offers an alternative way to stream. No wonder the internet and cable TV providers are upgrading the download and upload speeds. Besides, these companies have been upgrading the networks to support the DOCSIS 3.1 standard in 2018. It provides gigabit internet connections without having to rely on fiber lines to each residence.

11 May

Charter® Seals a New Deal with CBS Corporation

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Wireless And Mobile Services

One of the best internet providers in the United States, Charter Communications®, recently entered into a partnership with CBS Corporation by signing a long-term distribution deal. Reports from several reliable sources indicate that Charter® has gained retransmission rights for all CBS-owned stations through this deal. In addition to that, the telecom giant will also be able to expand authenticated streaming rights to both Showtime® and CBS programming thanks to this new deal.

Despite being one of the best internet providers in the country, Charter Communications® did not have authenticated streaming rights to the programming of CBS Sports Network and CBS. This implies that the new deal signed by Charter® will enable them to expand their streaming service offering, which will in turn lure in more customers.

Moreover, the multi-year pact signed by Charter Communications® and CBS Corporation also includes carriage pacts for Smithsonian Channel™, Showtime®, and CBS Sports Network. The previous agreement between these parties was rumored to be expired on April, but both the companies were eager to sign a new contract to extend their long-term partnership, which has benefited both the parties.

The chief operating officer of CBS Corporation, Joseph Ianniello, said, “We are very pleased to extend and expand our partnership with Charter, which clearly recognizes the value CBS’ industry-leading content brings to their viewers throughout the country. This latest deal once again helps us achieve our company’s economic and strategic goals, while delivering must-have content to viewers live and on demand whenever and wherever they want.”

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The executive Vice President of programming acquisition of Charter Communications®, Tom Montemagno, further shed some light into this new deal. He said, “We are pleased to have reached this agreement with CBS that reflects the importance and breadth of Charter’s distribution and provides us expanded rights to provide our customers increased access to CBS’ content both inside and, now for the first time, outside the home as well.”

The executives from both the companies refused to share the financial terms of the deal. However, more reports about the new deal are expected to hit the telecom market in the upcoming days. It is evident that customers who have subscribed to Charter Communications® will be happy with the new deal because it will let them stream the TV shows and other programming of CBS across multiple devices at the same time.

04 May

AT&T® Outlines Commercial Fixed Wireless 5G Deployment Strategies

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Fixed Wireless

As per the results of fixed 5G trials conducted in select cities, AT&T® anticipates 5G mobile services that operate on mmWave spectrum to have transmitters placed inside 150 to 250 meters from one site to the other. The current mobile broadband services of AT&T® are deployed through a network infrastructure, which operates on 700 megahertz to 2 gigahertz band. However, AT&T® plans to deploy 5G mobile services that rely on 39 GHz millimeter wave spectrum. This band not only offers higher speeds and lower latency rates of below 10 milliseconds, but also transmits signals almost as good as the airwaves of lower band.

The Chief Financial Officer of AT&T®, John Stephens, said that the officials of the best internet provider are persuaded by the outcomes of fixed 5G tests. “We’re seeing gigabit-plus speeds under line-of-sight conditions to distances up to 900 feet and with extremely low latency rates, some as low as 9 milliseconds,” he said during a quarterly earnings call of AT&T®. “These trials have shown that millimeter-wave [signals are] able to penetrate foliage, glass—and even walls—better than anticipated with no discernible signal performance impacts due to rain, snow or other weather issues.”

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The Assistant VP of Radio Technology and Strategy at AT&T® Labs, Dave Wolster, said that the engineers of the company are certain that fixed wireless connections that operate on mmWave spectrum will deliver desired signals, even at ranges above 300 meters and under conditions favorable to line of sight communication. “With fixed wireless at millimeter wave, we have a lot of antenna gain to work with,” Wolter said. “At the base station, we have an antenna array of maybe 64 elements that are beam-forming, so they concentrate the energy in the direction of interest toward your user. The user also has an antenna array with higher gain than what you would have in a mobile device, and it uses higher power than typical mobile devices are using.”

The best internet provider expects fixed antennas to be placed outside of a construction window using Low-E glass, unlike how they used it inside of such windows in fixed 5G tests. “With millimeter waves, you lose quite a bit of power just going through a window, so we’re having to deal with that, as well. If you can put [the antennas] outside, you’ll get substantially more range, just because you don’t have that loss through the window,” Wolter added.

21 Apr

Comcast® Introduces New Gigabit Service in Vermont

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New Gigabit Service

In recent news, Comcast® declared that they are launching a new internet service in Vermont. After this, the business customers, as well as the residential customers of Comcast® in this area, will be able to enjoy an internet speed of 1 gigabit per second. This is among the fastest internet speeds that are widely available in the country.

The services also include the access to the largest Wi-Fi network of the nation that includes more than 19 million hotspots. In fact, reports say that the telecommunications company has plans to install the new internet service to the majority of its service areas throughout the year.

With the latest move, the gigabit internet service is now available in Bethel, Brookfield, Berlin, Braintree, Calais, East Montpelier, Duxbury, Montpelier, Middlesex, Greensboro, Johnson, Hyde Park, Moretown, Morrisville, Morristown, Randolph, Walden, Rochester, Worcester and Woodbury, Waterbury, and Vermont.

Officials said that the DOCSIS 3.1 technology is employed in the new gigabit service. This technology makes it possible and easier to deliver this fastest speed over the existing communication cable lines that are already available in almost every home and office building in the neighborhood. Yet in order to avail this ultra-fast internet service, all the customers, both residential and businesses, will have to install a digital cable modem that supports DOCSIS 3.1 technology.

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Michael Parker, the Senior Vice President of Comcast® in the Western New England Region, said, “With the launch of our 1 Gigabit service, we continue to deliver an unparalleled Internet experience for our customers in terms of speed, control, and reliability. We’ve increased internet speeds 17 times in the past 17 years and we will continue to bring customers the absolute fastest speeds possible by proactively investing in our advanced, high-performance network.”

With the launch of this high-speed internet service, the customers can download a TV episode 600 megabyte in just 4 seconds and an HD movie of 5 gigabytes in 40 seconds. Similarly, the Comcast® customers also can download a music album of 150 megabytes in just two seconds and a video game of 15 gigabytes in two minutes using this internet service.

Comcast® is providing their DOCSIS 3.1 based 1-gigabit internet service for their business customers in Vermont as well. For the existing customers of the company in this area, the available speed tiers are “Business Internet 500” and “Business Internet 1 Gig”. This service helps the companies to prevent the need for the expensive construction of latest network facilities. The affordability and the ultra-high speed of “Business Internet 1 Gig” are best suited for industries such as hospitality, education, healthcare, government, manufacturing, and retail.

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