Carrier Catch-Up: A Look At The Latest Buzz From Today’s Largest Telecoms


Government Intervention And Fast Fiber

Faster speeds were the name of the game last month as the White House set an agenda aimed at speeding up 5G development, and carriers revealed faster networking services in new locations. At the same time, Net Neutrality continued to make headlines in October.

Here are some of the recent attention-grabbing headlines that have been keeping the telecom industry on its toes.

The White House Sets Agenda For U.S. Wireless Spectrum

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In an effort to speed up 5G development, the White House last month issued a memo called "Developing a Sustainable Spectrum Strategy for America’s Future," in which President Trump set a 180-day timetable for executive departments and agencies to report to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross their anticipated future spectrum requirements, as well as a comprehensive review of current frequency assignments and usage.

Moving forward, a report will be generated on emerging technologies and their impact on non-federal spectrum demand. There will also be an annual report on spectrum progress, and the White House set a 270-day timetable to generate a long-term National Spectrum Strategy that will take a look at increasing use through airwave sharing and flexible-use licenses.

Vermont Caught In Legal Battle Over Net Neutrality

Cable and telecom providers are suing Vermont over two interrelated attempts to regulate internet access and restore rules rolled back by the Federal Communications Commission's Open Internet Order, according to the telecoms.

The American Cable Association, NCTA-The Internet & Television Association, USTelecom and CTIA, which represents providers such as AT&T, Comcast and Verizon, filed suit in a federal district court in Vermont to fight a law and executive order that the groups say was pre-empted by the FCC's order to roll back Net Neutrality. The groups say that states cannot regulate indirectly through their spending, procurement or other commercial powers what they are forbidden by law from regulating directly. Vermont has said it will fight the lawsuit.

Frontier Launches Gigabit Fiber Service

Frontier Communications in October rolled out a new Gigabit internet service in its Vantage fiber market as well as its FIOS markets, the network it picked up from Verizon.

The new 200/200 Mbps service will also offer speed tiers of 300/300 Mbps in Indiana, Oregon and Washington. Today, Vantage Fiber is offered in parts of Connecticut, North Carolina and Minnesota, while the company's FiOS network is available in the Tampa Bay, Fla., region as well as areas in Southern California, Dallas, and parts of Indiana, Oregon and Washington, according to the Norwalk, Conn.-based telecom provider.

Verizon Tops J.D. Power's Performance Survey

Verizon last month earned J. D. Power’s highest ranking in customer satisfaction in the East region, according to the firm's latest annual study of providers.

The study measures customer satisfaction across network performance and reliability; cost of service; billing; communication; and customer service. Verizon scored the highest ranking in each of the five factor categories. This is the sixth consecutive year Verizon has topped the J.D. Power survey, the Basking Ridge, N.J.-based telecom giant said.

Windstream Adds Express Route Between Dallas And Atlanta

Telecom provider Windstream revealed plans to overlay an express route on its current fiber-optic network route that links two cities: Dallas and Atlanta. The latest fiber route is one of several overlays that the company is planning across its long-haul core fiber network.

The rollout marks one piece of a larger strategy to create express routes between major markets and increasing speeds across the board, according to the Little Rock, Ark.-based company.

CenturyLink Names New Public Policy SVP

Telecom leader CenturyLink has promoted Clay Bailey to the role of senior vice president of public policy and government affairs.

Bailey will be taking over for John Jones, who has retired after more than two decades with the company. Bailey, a CenturyLink veteran, previously served as senior vice president of transformation, and prior to that, the company's senior vice president and treasurer. Bailey also served as senior vice president of regional operations for Monroe, La.-based CenturyLink.