Broadband Communities

MAR-APR 2013

BROADBAND COMMUNITIES is the leading source of information on digital and broadband technologies for buildings and communities. Our editorial aims to accelerate the deployment of Fiber-To-The-Home and Fiber-To-The-Premises.

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Industry news From Gigabit Envy to Gigabit Deployed: You Can Get There Join the FTTH Council in Kansas City on May 29 – 30 to learn how to deploy an ultra-high-speed network and join the gigabit revolution. By Heather Burnett Gold / Fiber to the Home Council Americas F rom Seattle and Chicago to Chattanooga and Kansas City to Lafayette, La., Bristol, Tenn., and Bristol, Va., gigabit connectivity is not a theory but a reality. Tese are just a few of the cities across the United States that understand what we all already know – gigabit connectivity is a game changer. Ultra-high-speed, gigabit connectivity is quickly becoming a vital prerequisite to economic growth, job creation and global competitiveness. A gigabit network isn't just for entertainment or hours of uninterrupted gaming. It is needed for real-world applications that range from enhancing public safety networks to upgrading electrical grids to advancing the capabilities of telemedicine to growing the local economy. A gigabit network is a local on-ramp to the rest of the world. Chattanooga, often referred to as "Gig City," made an investment in its broadband infrastructure that revitalized the city and resulted in signifcant economic development and job growth by luring such companies as Volkswagen, Amazon. com, HomeServe USA and Claris Networks. Case Western Reserve University Medical Center is using its gigabit network to help surgeons practice difcult medical operations through the use of surgical theater software. And thanks to its fber-to-the-home network, Lafayette, La., created the Living Lab, a community-scale test bed that allows health care innovators to develop solutions to challenges health care faces today, including childhood obesity and emergency medicine. Tis is not "Game of Trones" or fve screens streaming Netfix. Tis is an engine for local innovation and economic growth, and it is only a taste of what is yet to come. Te challenge now is to get every community to gigabit deployed. Securing the necessary fnancing for gigabit connectivity, managing the technical and administrative requirements and juggling the requirements of many stakeholders can be slow, frustrating and arduous. Te process raises difcult questions of how to solicit, invest in and use gigabit connectivity and make it work for economic progress, how to attract private and public investment, and how to assess demand. Tough these questions have inhibited many communities from investing in ultra-high-speed networks, they are not insurmountable. Tere is no longer any need to keep 90 reinventing the wheel. Indeed, we now have more than 1,000 fber-to-the-home networks across the country to tell us so. Any community can be the next Kansas City or Lafayette if it is willing to learn from those who have gone before. Just as gigabit connectivity allows the knowledge exchange that will fuel the 21st century, coming together to share the knowledge and experiences in obtaining that kind of connectivity is invaluable. Business and community leaders across the U.S. understand they must upgrade their broadband networks to remain competitive in the global economy, but information on how to achieve that goal is hard to fnd and often overwhelmingly technical. Responding to this defciency, the Fiber to the Home Council and partner organizations have gathered the resources needed to help civic leaders, local telecommunications providers and other groups upgrade their networks and join the gigabit revolution. On May 29 and 30, we will bring those resources together in Kansas City, Mo., where Google is already deploying its fber network. Te Council's Community Toolkit Conference in Kansas City will focus on every aspect of upgrading a network, from building a business case and securing community support to navigating local government and engaging key stakeholders. You will have the opportunity to hear from others who have upgraded their networks and can help your community walk through each step of the process. By assisting local civic and community leaders from across the country pursue their dreams of gigabit connectivity, we aim to move one step closer to all-fber connectivity in the United States, advancing our global competitiveness while promoting economic development and enhancing quality of life. Come join us. v Heather Burnett Gold is the president of the Fiber to the Home Council Americas, a nonproft association consisting of companies and organizations that deliver video, Internet and/or voice services over high-bandwidth, next-generation, direct fber optic connections, as well as those planning and building FTTH networks. For more information on the Community Toolkit Conference, visit | BROADBAND COMMUNITIES | | March/april 2013

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