Century Link’s high-speed internet services can now be accessed by more than 48,000 rural households as well as businesses in Alabama. Recently, it has accepted three dozen Federal Communications Commission’s Connect America Funds phase II statewide offers which provide internet access featuring one Mbps uploading speed and the downloading speed of 10 megabytes per second. Around 1.2 million households and businesses in 33 states are estimated to be affected by this plan. Certain areas of Alabama are eligible for the plan and the company will be accepting $500 million annually for the next six years.
Century Link east region president, Kevin Mc Carter disclosed that Century Link will “bridge the urban-rural divide” by bringing broadband services to rural communities of Alabama. This would further enhance the economic growth, education and healthcare service that include distance learning and tele medicine. He also added, “While CAF II funding does not address all markets in our footprint, our company investment for CAF II is significant, and we look forward to working closely with Alabama policymakers to find funding and deployment solutions for additional markets.”
The whole plan is on the average of finalization and is expected to be completed in the period of six years. Construction is lined up early next year. Kathy Johnson, Alabama’s Office of Broadband Development director reportedly said that Century Link’s efforts interconnect with Gov. Robert Bentley’s vision for the accessible use of broadband services. “Through broadband, communities can attract and retain well-paying jobs, provide access to education and healthcare, provide improved public safety and enhance the quality of life in areas that are currently unserved or under served with this service,” she said.
As landlines are disappearing rapidly across the US, the funding for 911 communication has drastically dropped. This has left various cities as well as countries struggling in order to maintain the old system and is forcing them to pay for different upgrades or purchases of new systems.
The director of governmental affairs for National Emergency Number Association, Trey Forgety stated “This is sort of a consequence of the structural changes the telecommunication market has gone through over the past 20 years.” The problem faced by Kentucky is worst where the government may charge some fee on landlines for the usage of 911 services, but they can’t tax cell phones. The fee collected by them from cellphone users had 20% of the total cost that was used to operate the 911 services.
The local government has now increased the landline fee in order to make up some of the difference. But this year a law has been passed for deregulating the services of landline so that the telecom companies can stop maintaining them. The local officials said that this law has paced up the loss of landline customers and has made it impossible for the rest of the customers to cope up with the cost. An AT&T spokesperson has claimed landlines have started disappearing at the speed of 8,000 per month in Kentucky even before the government had passed the law.
The Kentucky League of Cities announced that it is important for the state to raise around $32 million to cover the revenue that has been lost from landlines. They have planned to increase the cell phone fee between $1 and $1.50 per phone. Daniel Hayes, AT&T spokesperson said the company “recognizes the need for laws to keep the pace with rapidly changing technology, and we are participating in the ongoing dialogue.”
A state advocate who represents utility customers announced that Verizon is confusing its users while transitioning from copper wire landline to fiber optic broadband. The Division of Rate Counsel has ordered the FCC to temporarily suspend Verizon’s copper network transition.
Rate Counsel Director Stefaine Brand traced letters sent by Verizon to customers that are trying to force customers into FiOS and frightening them to disconnect copper-wire service if they are unable to accomplish Verizon’s deadline within 45 days.
Brand said, “I think the future is certainly with new technology, but the problem is you just can’t do it. You have to do it with the way that doesn’t leave the most vulnerable parts of the population out in the cold. If you are not providing copper service, you have to provide other services that maintain the ability of everyone else to have a telephone.”
Verizon’s spokesperson Lee Gierczynski stated that Verizon works closely with its users in such areas where the transition takes place to FiOS including letters, postcards, and automated phone calls. He also added “where Verizon has transitioned customers from the copper network to the fiber optic network we closely work with customers to communicate with them what Verizon is doing and why we’re doing it to ensure the transition is a positive experience for them.”
The FCC has proposed new rules regarding copper wire on August 6. According to those latest rules, providers ought to notify retail customers regarding the retirement of the plan within three months.
An issue at a local provider impacted landline and data services in a handful of southeastern U.S. states with customers reporting outages across all the four major carriers. In accordance to Re/code, a problem that was first identified on AT&T’s network is now affecting Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint, affecting an unknown number of subscribers which were temporarily without any service.
Continue reading Landline, Wireless, and Data Services Down for Many in Southeastern US
Most of you might feel that you don’t need a landline anymore and most Americans don’t even have one. But along with the former ringer went a direct way to communicate, one that did not require basic knowledge of technology or parental controls. The latest startup known as Insensi is trying to bring back that ease of use with a device that comprises both the simplicity of our cherished landline and incorporates the beauty of a modern-day touchscreen.
Known as Ily, the device is becoming one of the inquisitively growing gadgets seeking to become a family’s communication hub. A similar device, Bloom was also recently launched and just like Ily, its founder wants to make it the ideal way for a family to connect. Though Bloom is a bit more involved and includes a wrist-worn device that automatically shares pictures, Ily has a functionality where everything either appears on the device or over a mobile app. Traditional phone calls can be used over Ily, but it also allows video chats, messages and sends finger draws doodles. Like the old landline, it is plugged into one place and due to this reason, neither would it get lost nor require charging.
Kids under the age of 12 years don’t have an agency over their parent’s device as those phone numbers don’t belong to them. So parents are unwilling to hand over their cell phones to their kids. Ily works either by connecting to Wi-Fi or to traditional phone jacks. Connecting with any of the family members is as easy as tapping their avatar on the touchscreen. A menu of options is displayed that further includes making a phone call, sending text, placing a video call or transmitting a drawing.
Ily is also available for iOS and Android so if the parent is travelling somewhere, their child can call easily from the home portal. Even though we seem to be more inclined towards smartphones nowadays, these devices are very useful and can perform multiple tasks. They have actually dug deep a human desire to build devices that have more than just singular functions.