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back to article AT&T takes on Google fiber, fixin' to give Texans GIGABIT GUNS

America's dominant telco will take on Google in fitting 1Gb/sec broadband in Austin, Texas, engaging in a numbers battle which will delight a few while doing nothing for the majority. The "GigaPower" service will only stretch to around one per cent of Austin homes, but enables AT&T to match Google's boast of 1Gb/sec broadband …

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Doff my cap

As I understand it, AT&T's current highest-speed U-verse service has a data cap of 250GB. That's about half an hour of full-throttle usage at 1Gb/s.

Also, according to the U-verse FAQs, if you persist in breaching the cap:

> ...You'll be charged $10 for every incremental 50GB of usage beyond your plan.

So that's about $12/minute...

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Only where competition is available

Yeah, this is just like Verizon FiOS, where you can get it only if there's competition promising to do better. So if you live in the SE where Comcast doesn't offer anything, you're fucked. Where the hell is the FCC when we need them?

Also I hear from Cnet that Verizon offers 0.5GB/sec in Austin for the small sum of $300+ a month, so at least they'll take a beating there.

In my area, Brighthouse struggles to put out 1.5MB/sec at most. In a major city like Orlando. Sad.

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Re: Only where competition is available

"Where's the FCC"... Shutdown until they can gain find a source of funding again I believe. It's part of the Republican's attempt at: small government... "no, shut them all down...."

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Does anyone else see the irony?

AT&T was split up in to baby bells to stop their dominance in the telecommunication industry.

Google is selling a service at a loss to gain entrance in to the telecommunication industry and can do so because of their monopoly* in search.

In short, we've stopped one monopoly only to allow another to grow up and take its place.

*It takes a judge's ruling to declare that Google has a monopoly in search. So they are a defacto monopoly and are acting in a monopolistic behavior as they enter in to another market.

With respect to the 1Gb per sec... Having the fatter pipe means that the internet becomes less of a bottleneck. While no one today needs that bandwidth, can people remember back in the day when we had 300bps modems? (Yeah I could have said 110 acoustic but then I would be dating myself. ;-)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Does anyone else see the irony?

If I may correct you on the initial assertion, "AT&T was split up in to baby bells to stop their dominance in the telecommunication industry.". This was at one time true, but is no longer.

I am in the South Eastern US where the "broken up AT&T" piece Bellsouth, was repurchased by AT&T a few years back, so around here nothing has changed much since 1980's (but that's another story..).

The local cable company has a "lock" on all cable users within the city boundaries. Other ISPs/cable provides can ONLY provide outside the city. The comment about Verizon about is spot on - not available here.

It is cognitive dissonance that Google "are sometimes evil", but if they were to propose to be a local ISP, AT&T would be out of business here within a month.

<rant>

To fully inform the reader, since AT&T is now the "new/old/new" local monopoly you must PAY them for their local phone service to get someone else's DSL.

This is the same scam in the UK with BT/Openreach. In Oxford I had B.E (since purchased by Sky), it was fitted by Openreach, and my local phone was RoyalMail, who of course pay BT. </rant>

Net neutrality is a fragile thing, and I fear it may cease to exist without some concerted effort to ensure EVERYONE gets decent unfettered internet.

Science is hard, engineering is hard at first then becomes easy. This is a solved problem.

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@AC ... Re: Does anyone else see the irony?

You wrote:

"If I may correct you on the initial assertion, "AT&T was split up in to baby bells to stop their dominance in the telecommunication industry.". This was at one time true, but is no longer."

Sorry, but I think you misunderstood.

I spoke of the split up that ACTUALLY happened, which is a true fact.

It occurred because the courts found that as a monopoly, AT&T was not only slowing down competition but also slowing down innovation.

Here we have Google using their dominance to fund their entry in to a completely different market where they are providing a service at below cost. This is a clear monopolistic act.

So we stopped one monopoly only to now allow another one to take its place.

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Wait for Google

They have the better reputation.

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Really...

AT&T U-verse service around the Austin Area is spotty at best (Internet and TV). Their 4G service ain't that great either. I think it'll take upgrades they're not telling anyone about to get Gig out of the existing Uverse infrastructure.

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Trollface

In theory!

1Gbps sounds great, save you have to use AT&T to get it.

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What about upload speeds?

I'm guessing there is no gigabit upload speed option with AT&T but Google is providing it today in Kansas City.

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