Last week, I spoke with Jeff Pesek and Peter Fleck of Tech.mn about telecom and broadband in Minnesota. They have also created a timeline of important broadband events in recent MN history.
Jesse Harris continues his monthly podcast show with an interview of Ken Sutton from Brigham.Net - a service provider from Brigham City that recently started offering services on the UTOPIA network.
Brigham.Net has developed a very loyal customer base -- an impressive feat as it was dependent on leasing loops from Qwest, its biggest competitor. In that part of Utah, Qwest still has to share its lines with third parties but Qwest still goes out of its way to make life difficult for those third parties. Qwest poached customers from Brigham.Net - a common practice if one talks to any ISP that has leased lines from Qwest to resell.
By getting on the open access network, Brigham.Net has expanded its customer base - it is on track to double the customer base in Brigham City when the UTOPIA network is fully available to residents.
The discussion is interesting and shows why unbundling requirements are inferior to a publicly owned network operating on an open access basis.
Carol Wilson speaks with Jackson's Michael Johnston about JEA's triple-play network in Tennessee. As far as I can tell, this interview took place in September, 2009. Johnston reports that the publicly owned network passes 30,000 residences and about 5,000 businesses. Of those taking cable services locally, 60% subscribe to JEA and half of them are taking multiple services. Jackson started as a purely open access network but has transitioned to offering retail services. At that point, they were starting to use the network to create a smart-grid for the electrical side of the utility.
I was the guest on Jesse Harris' February Podcast about the UTOPIA network in Utah. Running time is about 1 hour and we cover a number of interesting issues relating to broadband networks both in and outside of Utah, including the perception of networks, success stories, the tactics of incumbents, the background of my project at the New Rules Project of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance.
Utah's UTOPIA network has refreshed its web presence and Jesse Harris has completed another podcast with a provider on the open access network. His interview with Veracity Networks is embedded here.
Looking for something to listen to? Jim Baller's interview with Scott Mace on IT Conversations provides insight into stimulus funding, background on publicly owned networks, and his work on a broadband plan for the U.S. It runs for 50 minutes, but nearly all of them are interesting if you care about broadband.
Listen to this 1 hour podcast from Free UTOPIA that discusses recent progress in Brigham City, notes that Orem City is saving some $50,000/month from telecom expenses thanks to UTOPIA, and recaps some of the early history of the UTOPIA project. Most of the discussion is an interview with triple-play UTOPIA provider Prime Time Communications.