Despite initiatives like the FCC's Connect America Fund, which aims to offset the costs of installing broadband infrastructure to rural and underserved areas, broadband deployment across the U.S. remains unsatisfactorily slow.
The most recent FCC Broadband Progress Report, issued in January 2016, states “broadband is not being deployed to all Americans in a reasonable and timely fashion.”
The report also noted that the numbers show improvement over prior years. However, 39 percent of the rural population (23.4k Americans) currently lack access to basic fixed broadband service. In comparison, only 4 percent of the urban population face the same lack of access.
Many challenges contribute to the slow pace of broadband deployment. There is no single solution.
Building on our earlier blog post, “What’s the Hold-Up? The Future of Broadband Deployment,” we are taking a deeper look at the problems holding back broadband deployment. Let’s look at three strategies providers and governments can use to deliver access to faster and more reliable internet service to all Americans.
The solution is to free engineers of data maintenance work by outsourcing this administrative task to a managed services firm (like Alden), whether the provider works with their own internal engineers or uses an external engineering consultant. This enables engineers to focus entirely on their most valued skill and be more productive, moving fiber construction projects more quickly through the queue.
The FCC is looking to address these longstanding problems with proposed changes to the pole attachment timelines. Providers may still have time to avoid these tighter regulations by proactively improving the process. A shared, centralized asset database such as Alden One® offers a single, secure location for storing and sharing joint use data between asset owners, attaching companies, contractors and other relevant parties (like regulators). This technology streamlines partner communication and establishes transparency throughout the process – all of which can increase efficiency and accelerate time-to-market.
Learn more about how a shared, centralized asset database can aid faster deployment and help address inequities in broadband access by downloading, “5 Requirements of a Centralized Asset Database for Infrastructure Management.”