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Cable's fiber to the home plan is well underway

Ben Drawbaugh

When people think of fiber to the home, they usually think of FiOS. This is a good thing for Verizon since they've successfully bet the farm on the concept. But meanwhile, most traditional cable providers are steaming because they've been laying fiber since the 80's and just now realized they forgot to market that fact to the consumer. You see most customers don't realize that the primary difference between most cable providers and FiOS, is where the fiber ends -- and that FiOS uses IPTV for VOD. While cable companies choose to use fiber to the neighborhood, Verizon took it all the way to the side of your house. The part that surprises most, is that like cable companies, FiOS uses the very same coax cables to get into your house; in fact these days, the internet access even terminates with a cable modem. But of course having fiber run all the way to your customer's homes still gives FiOS a throughput advantage. The cable industry realizes this and apparently already has plans to extend the fiber -- which currently is about three blocks from your house -- all the way to your home. Anyway you slice this, the competition is good for us, and we can only hope that after both the telecom and cable industries offer comparable services, that the focus will turn to customer service, where they both have a long way to go.

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