Every so often, one of my themes continues to just deliver. Let’s talk broadband infrastructure again.
Axios rounds up the movement happening on regulation. Congress has $3.2B devoted to broadband in the COVID-19 relief bill passed in December, and the House Energy and Commerce Committee advanced $7.6B for students and teachers who don’t have access. This on top of the previously reported FCC investment in updating the apps.
But also on trend, the states are moving – Nebraska, Texas, and Ohio all have 2021 initiatives, and 34 states took some actions in 2020.
Seeing the writing on the wall, Comcast is pushing back their data cap rollout again, now to 2022.
Over on the wireless side, The Verge gave us a roundup of the current state of play. With phones expected to be generally 5G enabled this year, the networks are not nearly as far along. And, those industrial options are even further behind, particularly due to standardization issues.
Why do we care?
If you’re dismissive of regulation, I remind that businesses make decisions because of it. Comcast is making their moves based on reactions to government and public sentiment both.
Everything accelerated, and so did the move to make broadband a utility. Governments are recognizing it, and we’ll see moves at the state level accelerate too. That’s the covid accelerant. We care because it should open up more opportunities.