U.S. Broadband: Almost as good as, um, a lot of other places

Via the Twitter feed BroadbandReport, a new study suggests that the U.S. ranks 23rd in the world in broadband deployment. Strategy Analytics, the company that developed the report, is using a new set of metrics that look at five different indices to come up with the ranking.

The U.S. will continue to rank low for years, as the market here is very different here than in the rest of the world. Most of other countries are much smaller, making the scale of the problem much smaller. South Korea, which ranks first in the study, is smaller than almost every state in the U.S. And most other countries take a government-heavy, top down approach to broadband, which works better in other places because there is really only federal government and local governments. Here in the U.S., we have a middle layer of government (states) that are largely autonomous. And I'm not arguing for a more extensive top-down approach in the U.S. Topography, geography, and local business conditions vary so widely in the U.S. that dictating a one size fits all approach is likely to have a lot of unintended consequences.

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We finally managed to finagle some DSL service where we live. It's far and away better than the cellular and satellite options we've had no choice but to use for years. And thankfully, the installation was free (including running the line), and service is about half what we pay for satellite. The only trouble is that we're at the point where cancelling the satellite contract would run more expensive than simply keeping that active until our contract expires...so we're going to wind up with 2 providers for a couple months, then we'll cancel the satellite service and see if we can sell the hardware on Craigslist.

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