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AT&T Has Fooled The Press And Public Into Believing It's Building A Massive Fiber Network That Barely Exists

December 11, 2015 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by News Forage

A few years ago, AT&T realized something amazing: you don't have to build a cutting edge, fiber to the home broadband network, when it's relatively easy to fool the press and public intobelieving you're building a cutting edge, fiber to the home network. So as AT&T was actually busy reducing its fixed-line broadband spending and quietly walking away from DSL users it didn't want to upgrade, it launched a service it calls "U-Verse with Gigapower." Basically, AT&T's delivering gigabit speeds to high-end housing developments, then pretending the upgrades are much, much larger than they actually are.

Case in point: AT&T this week breathlessly announced that the company was deploying gigabit fiber to 38 more markets, bringing the grand total of its gigabit fiber deployment to an amazing56 total metro markets:

"AT&T announced today it is planning to expand the availability of ultra-fast speeds through AT&T GigaPower to homes, apartments and small businesses in parts of 38 additional metros across the United States - which will total at least 56 metros served. With the launch of our ultra-fast Internet service in parts of 2 of these metros today - Los Angeles and West Palm Beach - AT&T GigaPower is now available in 20 of the nation's largest metros.

Note a few things about the announcement, however. Nowhere does the company state whenthese connections will be delivered. Similarly nowhere does the company make clear that it's targeting mostly high-end housing developments where fiber is already in the ground, making costs negligible (the only way you could technically accomplish a deployment of this kind and magically have your CAPEX consistently drop). And while AT&T claims these improvements will reach 14 million residential and commercial locations, AT&T gives no timeline for this accomplishment. That means it could cherry pick a few hundred thousand University condos and housing developments per year and be wrapping up this not-so-epic fiber deployment by 2040 or so.

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