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07 Nov

Comcast® is Set to Increase Download Speeds in Select Packages in Central Division

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Increased Download Speeds

Comcast® recently told the media that the company would boost the download speeds in some of its major internet packages in the upcoming weeks across the Central Division, which covers areas Detroit, Atlanta, Miami, and other areas. The download speeds in select markets for Comcast’s Xfinity® Blast service would increase from 75 Mbps to 100 Mbps, while for Xfinity® Performance, the speeds would increase from 25 to 60 Mbps. The subscribers of the Xfinity® Performance Starter package would also get an increase in download speed from 10 to 25 Mbps.

“Comcast® already provides the nation’s fastest, most reliable internet and in-home Wi-Fi speeds,” said Doug Guthrie, who is the SVP for Big South Region, Central Division, at Comcast®. “Our goal is to keep pushing the envelope for our customers to deliver more value and provide a great online experience — whether that’s by boosting speeds, building out our Wi-Fi and fiber networks, or introducing bold innovations like xFi and Xfinity® Gigabit.”

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Comcast’s Xfinity® Blast Service

To avail the improved download speeds in the said Xfinity® packages, the subscribers may have to restart their respective modems either manually or via the Xfinity® My Account application. Comcast® said that it would inform their subscribers and give the required instructions prior to the changes apply. The new speeds are being unveiled early on in November and will continue through December mid as planned.

Comcast® estimates that the improvements in download speeds would apply to about 80 percent of the subscribers in the Central Division. It is to be noted that the company has increased internet speeds 17 times in the past 16 years.

The news follows up a number of other recent moves from Comcast®, which includes expansion of the Wi-Fi network and the launch of 2 Gbps and 1 Gbps home-based internet services. Comcast® has set up 18 million Wi-Fi hotspots in order to expand its network and rolled out Xfinity® xFi, a platform providing a digital dashboard, which lets the subscribers set up their home Wi-Fi network, find the password, find out which devices are being connected, troubleshoot the errors, set up parental controls, and even pause the Wi-Fi access at home. Other recent moves from Comcast® include the rollout of Xfinity® Mobile, which makes use of the 4G LTE network of Verizon®, which is also one of the best internet providers in the US.

26 Oct

AT&T® Rolls out Fixed Wireless Internet in Select Areas across Mississippi

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Fixed Wireless Internet

In July 2017, AT&T® unveiled the initial rollout of Fixed Wireless internet in parts of 15 Mississippi counties. AT&T® Fixed Wireless internet is presently available in more rural and underserved locations in select areas of 46 counties across the state. With this rollout, AT&T® has extended Fixed Wireless internet as part of their FCC Connect America Fund commitment to help rural and underserved homes and businesses in FCC-identified areas in the US.

As part of the larger commitment, AT&T® plans to rollout Fixed Wireless internet in over 400,000 locations nationwide by 2017 and over 1.1 million locations nationwide by 2020. In Mississippi alone, the Telco plans to deploy the best internet service in about 133000 locations by the year 2020.

AT&T® has also assured they will continue making community-specific announcements in Mississippi over the coming weeks and months. Among the counties, which feature in the service areas of AT&T® Fixed Wireless Internet include Adams, Amite, Attala, Benton, Benton, Choctaw, Clarke, and other specified regions in Mississippi. The business and residents in the counties of the state will get accesses to Fixed Wireless internet in parts with download speeds of 10 Mbps at the least.

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Deliver High-Quality Internet

“Fixed Wireless Internet service is innovative technology that is helping close the connectivity gap in many rural areas across our state,” said Mayo Flynt the state president of AT&T® in Mississippi State. “With more than 2,800 men and women working for AT&T® who call Mississippi home, we are committed to meeting the demands for more broadband connectivity for residents and businesses in rural areas. That’s why we’re pleased to announce this service expansion to parts of 46 counties in Mississippi.”

Now subscribers of the Telco in the said areas can browse, download, and stream movies or television shows of their liking from the internet. The Fixed Wireless internet connection comes from a wireless tower to a fixed antenna on the subscribers’ homes or business premises. “This is an efficient way to deliver high-quality internet to customers in rural and underserved areas,” said the AT&T® press release that announced the rollout.

The best internet service includes a 160 GB data allowance a month with additional data at $10 per 50 GB up to a max of $200 a month. The rural internet without satellite requires the installation of the AT&T® outdoor antenna and indoor residential gateway. In addition to Mississippi, AT&T® has also launched the Fixed Wireless internet service in 17 states recently including Alabama, Illinois, Kansas, and Michigan.

19 Oct

AT&T® Provides High Speed Internet in Gladwin, Osceola, Arenac, and Clare

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Fixed Wireless Internet Service

AT&T® has expanded their Fixed Wireless internet service to parts of Gladwin, Osceola, Clare, and Arenac Counties for small businesses and rural homes that have limited to no internet access. AT&T® and the State Representative Jason Wentworth recently announced that the residents in Gladwin, Clare, Osceola, and Arenac Counties are included in the locations in Michigan, to which the internet provider has extended their Fixed Wireless Internet service as part of their FCC Connect America Fund program.

“In today’s information-driven, global economy, it’s critical that homes and businesses in rural areas are afforded the same access to the benefits and opportunities empowered by high-speed Internet,” said State Rep. Wentworth. “AT&T’s decision to upgrade the communication infrastructure serving our businesses and residents will undoubtedly have a long-lasting, positive effect on our community.”

AT&T® is planning to reach more than 86,000 locations with their technology across Michigan by the year 2020. They are planning to reach 400,000 locations across 18 states by the end of the year and 1.1 million plus locations across the nation by 2020. “AT&T® is committed to closing the connectivity gap here in Michigan, and this new innovative service is going to help a great deal in getting us there,” said Jim Murray, President of AT&T® Michigan. “It’s always exciting when we can provide the connectivity that residents and businesses demand, and we think it will be a real game changer for these rural communities.”

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Connect America Fund Program

The Fixed Wireless Internet service from AT&T® offers home internet service that provides download speeds of at least 10 Mbps and upload speeds of 1 Mbps. This connection is provided from a wireless tower of the service provider to an antenna that is fixed at the home or business of the customer. Fixed Wireservice from AT&T®less Internet is a much efficient way to offer high quality internet service to users in rural areas with limited to no internet access.

“For Michigan’s rural families, communities and businesses, the introduction of this service from AT&T® marks the beginning of an enhanced quality of life and new economic opportunity,” said Jim Byrum, President of the Michigan Agri-Business Association. “Bringing internet access to rural areas is a meaningful investment that will be a spark for rural businesses, improve local economies and open up new opportunities for residents throughout rural Michigan.” AT&T® will offer updates on the availability of the service in parts of Michigan and other states of the country.

05 Oct

Comcast’s Xfinity® Mobile Service Attains 200,000 Subscribers

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Unlimited Data Plans

Xfinity® Mobile, the wireless service offered by Comcast Corporation®, has successfully managed to attract approximately 200,000 subscribers within five months of its launch. Only existing Comcast® customers subscribed to its Internet and TV service can avail this wireless offering. Xfinity® Mobile was first launched in May and its unlimited data plans had cost about $65 per month. For those already subscribed to its premier packages such as video or landline services, the plans cost around $45.

The wireless offerings offered by Xfinity® Mobile are the lowest among the packages offered by rival wireless carriers in the country. The introduction of Xfinity® Mobile reflects the new moves initiated by Comcast® in order to generate newer ways of revenue. This is because more customers are abandoning traditional pay TV in favor of other services that offer best internet packages along with the TV. The mobile service is now used by Comcast® to gather more subscriber base instead of resorting to providing streaming services.

Comcast® is using the cellular network of Verizon Communications® to make available its service to the customers. For this, the Telco has acquired network capacity from Verizon® for reselling to its subscribers at wholesale rates. Comcast® is considering various possibilities to lower the prices than the rival carriers operating in the country. This is mainly because a majority of the users utilize the Wi-Fi network on their phones the most whether at home or at work.

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Comcast’s Xfinity® Mobile Service

According to Comcast®, this will ease congestion on the cellular networks as a majority of this data is transferred across Wi-Fi networks. Xfinity® subscribers are provided with the option to connect their smartphones and tablets via the 18 million Wi-Fi hotspots of Comcast® and the cellular network of Verizon®. Previously, the Telco extended the Xfinity® Mobile service into more territories in the nation including Chicago, Philadelphia, and Boston.

Brian Roberts, Comcast’s chairman and CEO said, “It’s off to a great start…on the Verizon network with an MVNO. That relationship [with Verizon] is going well and the product works, and we are pleased with the early results.”

The executives at Comcast® have stated that the service will become more profitable when the subscribers attain a low-to-mid-single-digit among its 25 million broadband subscribers. “Once we get to some minimal scale, which isn’t a huge number, every incremental customer pays for itself,” Brian Roberts added.

06 Sep

Cox® To Charge Extra $50 Per Month For Unlimited Data

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Extra Charge For Unlimited Data

Most of the internet customers in the country love to watch HD video contents and stream live sports events, TV shows, and movies on their tablets, smartphones, and other devices. This recent increase in the internet consumption has urged several customers to look for an unlimited data plan. However, the issue is that some of the leading internet providers in the country are still a little bit hesitant to offer an unlimited data plan.

For instance, the third largest internet provider in the country, Cox Communications® has started to charge an additional amount of $50 a month from customers who are looking to get rid of their data cap to avoid high internet fees.

Fortunately, the telecom company, Cox® has not yet imposed data caps in all their markets but they have been trying to expand its reach over the last few months. Cox® subscribers in New Orleans had earlier received a note from the company, in which Cox® notified them that will have to pay an additional fee of $10 if they exceed their monthly data cap. The officials from the telecom company added that these data caps would only affect approximately 2 percent of their customers.

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Avoid High Internet Fees

A memo from Cox® that documented the changes stated, “An overwhelming majority of data is consumed by a very small percentage of internet users. The new choices are great options for the small percentage of heavy users who routinely use 1TB+ per month and prefer a flat monthly rate, rather than purchasing additional data blocks.”

However, Cox® is offering another option to customers that allot 500 GB of additional data to customers who are under the 1.5 TB of data per month plan. This add-on package can be purchased for just $30 but it is significant to note that the Cox® has confirmed that the “unused data does not roll over.”

The internet services offered by Cox® are currently available to 6 million customers across 18 states of the country. The telecom giant imposes data caps in some of their markets such as Virginia, Rhode Island, Oklahoma, Ohio, Nebraska, Nevada, Louisiana, Kansas, Iowa, Idaho, Georgia, Florida, Connecticut, California, Arkansas, and Arizona. Many experts shared their concerns on Cox’s latest move to follow the footsteps of Comcast Corporation® who also has an unlimited data option for an extra amount of $50 a month.

31 Aug

CenturyLink® Releases Enhancements In Its Private Cloud Service

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Private Cloud Service

CenturyLink® recently declared that it has made several enhancements to its private cloud service. This will enable businesses to use their applications with the flexibility offered by a public cloud service along with the security and performance provided by a dedicated network infrastructure. The enhancements to the private cloud service also led the Telco to introduce the Dedicated Cloud Compute (DCC) Foundation.

Based on VMware Cloud Foundation and HPE ProLiant servers, this is an updated architecture adopting the model of a software-defined data center (SDDC). This will facilitate automation of several of the tasks and will aid in bringing forward the services offered by private cloud on demand. Businesses will find this very helpful, as it will help them to surpass the many challenges involved in provisioning, configuration errors, and other processes. CenturyLink® has made available this new private cloud service to customers and partners in the U.S. and other continents such as Europe and Asia Pacific.

David Shacochis, vice president of Hybrid IT product management, CenturyLink® said, “With today’s digital economy fueling increased demands on IT infrastructure, the latest enhancements to our Dedicated Cloud Compute (DCC) service, based on VMware Cloud Foundation, build on CenturyLink’s proficiency in helping enterprises in their digital transformation. “The software-defined data center approach enables the flexible delivery of enterprise applications connected to our global network across 32 hosting locations on four continents. With this service, businesses can rapidly deploy new workloads and innovations in an easily scalable, highly secure environment.”

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Dedicated Cloud Compute Service

The DCC Foundation set up by CenturyLink® is created using the VMware Cloud Foundation. It is an enhanced form of cloud network infrastructure, which speeds up the time to market value of businesses, particularly IT companies, through its factory integrated cloud infrastructure. Included in VMware Cloud Foundation are numerous software-defined services that can be used for computing, networking storage, and security solutions.

Businesses can benefit a lot by applying the DCC Foundation in their infrastructure. This includes lowering of the total ownership costs, enhanced security, access to the best internet service, and a simplification in the entire range of operations. CenturyLink’s DCC Foundation offers minimizing of security risks, flexibility in deploying the options globally, predictability in performance, etc.

Geoff Waters, Vice President of Global Cloud Sales at VMware stated, “Working with partners such as CenturyLink®, VMware’s cloud strategy is to help customers run, manage, connect and secure their entire application portfolio across clouds and devices, leveraging a common operating environment. Together we will help our mutual customers drive digital transformation and gain the greatest advantage from cloud computing.”

19 Aug

HughesNet® Planning To Introduce 100 Mbps Satellite In 2021

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Satellite Based Internet Service

Hughes Network Systems® had launched an upgrade for their satellite based internet service, HughesNet® broadband, in the month of March and this upgrade helped them transform into the first residential satellite-based internet service that meet the definition of “broadband” internet by Federal Communications Commission. That is old story. Now, HughesNet® is planning another important leap in their best internet service, in terms of broadband. They are planning to introduce a 100 Mbps capable internet service network based on their new satellite that is to be launched on 2021.

HughesNet® Gen5 was serving 100,000 plus internet users by the month of June and offers download speeds of 25 Mbps and upload speeds of 3 Mbps through their EchoStar 19/Jupiter 2 and EchoStar 18/Jupiter 1 satellites. HughesNet® owns about sixty percent share of the satellite based internet service in the United States and their service targets the rural residential users who are underserved by the terrestrial telecommunications and cable providers.

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Ka-Band Satellite Service

Recently, HughesNet® executives announced that they have signed a contract with the Space Systems Loral to make a new EchoStar/Jupiter satellite, that is to be named as EchoStar XXIV/Jupiter 3. This Ultra High Density Satellite (UHDS) from HughesNet® will offer residential internet and commercial data services like cellular network “backhaul” and in-flight internet. This new satellite, EchoStar 24 will be added to the existing fleet of HughesNet® satellites, will more than double the available Ka-band satellite service of HughesNet® across South America and North America. It is reported that this new satellite will have 500 Gbps of throughput.

It is reported that HughesNet® will likely not be the first to the 100 Mbps club. ViaSat executives announced their plans in 2016 to have the ViaSat-3 class of communication satellites. Each of these satellites is said to have a capacity of 1 Tbps, which is about the total capacity of “approximately 400 commercial communications satellites in space today—combined,” a ViaSat spokesperson said during the announcement in February 2016.

In addition to offering 100 Mbps internet service, ViaSat-3 will also offer up to 1 Gbps internet speeds for oil and gas industry (maritime applications) and for streaming movies for the aviation customers of ViaSat. It is reported that the two satellites of ViaSat to be delivered in 2019 will offer best internet service in USA, Africa, Europe, and the Middle East. They are also planning to deliver a third satellite to serve the Asian countries.

08 Aug

CenturyLink® Releases Revised Internet Prices

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Reliable High-Speed Internet Connection

American citizens, who are in search of the best internet service for their home or business needs, often ask themselves how much they will have to pay for a reliable high-speed internet connection. There is no simple answer to this question because most internet providers in the country offer a wide variety of internet prices based on whether you are bundling the services or not. In addition to that, several internet providers also offer low introductory prices that may significantly rise after the promotion period.

However, it seems that CenturyLink® is planning something very different. The telecom giant recently offered a set of simplified rates, which they called “Price for Life.” The officials from CenturyLink® confirmed that these new rates are currently available to their customers in the Portland area. Additionally, they also added that the revised rates would soon be available to CenturyLink® internet customers in other markets too.

The telecom company added that these internet prices would remain valid as long as customers maintain their internet subscriptions. Reports indicate that customers will have to neither sign a contract nor subscribe to an additional service to enjoy this latest offering.

Reports say that CenturyLink® customers will have to pay $55 a month to get access to an internet service that offers a speed of 40 Mbps. However, customers who want more internet speed have two options before them. They can either subscribe to the 100 Mbps speed internet service for $65 a month or they could choose the 1 gigabit high-speed internet service for $85 a month.

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Price For Life Plan

In a statement, CenturyLink® Portland spokeswoman Rachel Montemayor said, “Price for Life is currently rolling out this offer in all CenturyLink markets across the United States. It started in a few trial markets in June, and will continue to expand throughout the rest of the year.”

It is also reported that customers will not be forced to subscribe to the service for a particular time period. They also enjoy the luxury to keep these rates as long as they want. The telecom company guarantees, “no hidden fees” but you will have to pay an additional amount of $10 every month if you are planning to lease a modem from CenturyLink®.

 

04 Jul

Cox® To Expand 1tb Monthly Data Cap To More Locations

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Monthly Data Cap

Cox Communications® is arguably the best internet provider in the US, and it seems that they are not in any mood to trail back. In recent reports, Cox Communications® is planning to expand their monthly internet data caps to new locations. This data caps aims to limit the data usage to 1 TB each month for the customers.

Previously, the carrier has commenced the plan of metering internet usage to other territories such as Omaha, Ohio, Cleveland, Nebraska, Las Vegas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma. The introduction of this new data plans will require customers located in the said regions to pay $10 for every 50 GB data consumed.

Cox’s intended changes would become functional by this month through a two-bill grace period that remains until the month of September. Customers will be charged after this grace period for any of the extra usage above the intended terabyte data limit. The provider has claimed that the new implementation of regulations and fee in excess data usage is the result of considerable increase in data use among the customers.

According to Cox®, the one terabyte of data is more than enough for a majority of the customers. It will allow them the provision of streaming about 140 two-hour duration HD movies or listen to about 30,000 songs. The data cap is 2 TB for customers that have signed up for the latest Gigablast plan offered by Cox®. It is only available in selected regions across the country.

Cox® is also rolling out numerous facilities that allow the customer in checking their data usage. This is possible through the Cox® Connect smartphone app and manually by using the online data usage meter option. 1 TB data caps are implemented in the cheap internet packages of most internet providers. These plans have been mostly controversial citing anti-competitiveness.

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Metering Internet Usage

Net Neutrality activists have forced the FCC to verify the zero-rating practice that excludes favored services from the internet data caps. Previously, many of the internet providers in the country have set data limits on their internet offerings. Most of the unlimited plans of the providers will reduce the speed if the usage exceeded a certain amount.

Cox’s plans of implementing the 1 TB data cap is mainly for the prevention of any congestion on the networks. This can help in avoiding any reduction in the performance of the connectivity for the customers. The new data cap will be effective on the bills of the subscribers after October 8, 2017. Meanwhile, Cox® is also planning to introduce an unlimited data plan later this year.

04 Jul

CenturyLink® Provides Faster Internet Service In Elizabeth City

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Gigabit Internet Speeds

In recent news, CenturyLink® is continuing to strengthen their network in Elizabeth city while they are currently offering service speeds of 1 Gbps for less than hundred dollars a month to maintain their name as the best internet provider of the city. They announced earlier this year “it’s continuing to expand its 1 Gbps ultra-fast fiber-optic network to businesses in select areas of Elizabeth City as well as offering speeds up to 100 Mbps to many residential customers.”

CenturyLink® officials said that with a 100 Megabit per second internet connection, users would be able to download a movie of size 5 GB in less than seven minutes. As per the follow up information provided by the CenturyLink® spokesperson Dacia LaBounty, their services can be even more faster. She shared that CenturyLink® now provides the residential users with internet speeds of up to 140 mbps for just sixty-five dollars per month.

LaBounty also noted that the one Gbps service is usually needed by the commercial users and is available for eight five dollars per month. The new users will have to pay a sum of hundred dollars to buy or ten dollars per month to lease an “all-in-one modem and router with in-home Wi-Fi.”

Some of the households and businesses may or may not be eligible to get the service depending on the proximity to the fiber lines of CenturyLink®. Without detailing on how much area of Elizabeth City will be able to take advantage of the service, LaBounty said that the residential high speed internet will be available to neighborhoods like Tanglewood, Stockbridge, the apartments on Millbrooke, Hull Drive, Hunters Lake, Rivers Edger, and Foxhaven.

LaBounty also added that CenturyLink® is one of the best internet providers of the country that has offered gigabit internet speeds to the commercial users in Elizabeth city. She said that CenturyLink® “continues to enhance its core network” for reliability and speed. “We have designed the network to stay ahead of the ever-growing technological demands of our customers,” she wrote.

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Ultra-Fast Fiber-Optic Network

CenturyLink® said that the speeds of 100 Mbps will be ideal for houses with many users on different devices and the service is capable of accommodating users who download and stream videos frequently. Their service also offers faster upload speeds for easy cloud storage, online gaming, and sharing images and videos. Users might also be concerned about the throttling by the internet service providers. LaBounty offered assurance against practices like that.

“CenturyLink® does not block, prioritize or degrade any internet-sourced or destined traffic based on application, source, destination, protocol or port unless it does so in connection with harmful security practices,” LaBounty wrote. She added that even though CenturyLink® does not throttle their service, factors like infrastructure, usage of many high demand devices, signal from wireless router, location of router, operating system issues, and viruses can limit the bandwidths.

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