Gfast map

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In 2016, looked very promising.
Thousands worked at developing and deploying.
It wasn't enough. 
Most carriers are investing
in fiber or 5G instead.


Dark Blue: Firm commitments from incumbent: BT (10M), Belgacom, Australian NBN, Swisscom,  Austria, Bezeq Israel, Chunghwa Taiwan, Telus Canada, Telekom South Africa, SK Korea, (U.S.) AT&T, Century, Frontier, Windstream, Belgium, Omantel

Mid Blue: Smaller carriers in Germany, Norway, Finland, Japan

Light Blue: Incumbent likely:  France, Germany, Italy

Windstream-mapWorld leader British Telecom is praying they'll get 200-300 meg at 400 meters. Update 7/28 Windstream is the first using bonding, which means the numbers are not so crazy. Still unlikely, however. *** Thomas told investors he will get double the reach. Sean Buckley of Fierce reports Windstream will deploy Update 8/6 Removed 2017 date. Might be 2016.*** They have a million DSL customers, down 40,000 on the year, scattered in the U.S. South and Midwest. Only 26% of those customers can get 50 megabits, while cable across most of America is at 200 megabits headed to a gigabit. As you can see in the press release below, Windstream, like Frontier, is selling 20-~60 megabit service as "up to 100 megabits." 

CEO Tony Thomas is a finance guy who needs to spend more time listening to his engineers. Buckley quotes, " amendment 2 has a lot of potential and we're working with our vendors to make sure that can go into the products as we look towards 2017," Thomas said. "You'll be able to get 200-300 Mbps speeds at further distances of 2,000 to 3,500 feet from the home." Both theoretical studies and the early chip designs don't expect those speeds to go nearly that far.

BT has now installed thousands of lines in their test districts, very few of which get 300 megabits at 300 meters. A very optimistic estimate for 200-300 megabits would be 500-600 meters. That would require shutting down all the existing DSL lines to recover the first 22 MHz. The drop off beyond that distance is very rapid; the higher frequencies used just can't travel very far in copper phone lines. The expectation at 1200 meters would be closer to 50 megabits - iff the technology improves. More fiber and field terminals will be needed to get to cable-like speeds.

Finding the funding won't be easy. Windstream is carrying $10B in debt on less than $1B in equity. They've been selling assets to cover a dividend that is much larger than GAAP income. Their bonds are junk-rated. For the sake of their rural customers, many of whom can't get cable, let's wish them luck. 

Computerbild calls claims like the below a "DSL Disaster: The lies of the Internet provider (DSL-Desaster: Die Lügen der Internetanbieter)".


Windstream now provides speeds of up to 100 Mbps to more than 1,000 markets after upgrades

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Jul 05, 2016

Windstream now provides speeds of up to 100 Mbps to more than 1,000 markets after upgrades

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Windstream (NASDAQ:WIN), a leading provider of advanced network communications, has completed network upgrades across 15 states to bring faster Internet speeds of up to 100 megabits-per-second (Mbps) to residential and small business customers in more than 1,000 markets.

Windstream now offers premium speeds of 50 Mbps to 100 Mbps to 26 percent of its customers and expects to reach 30 percent by the end of 2016.  In addition, almost half of all customers have access to speeds of 25 Mbps or greater today.

“Expanding access to faster Internet speeds is our highest priority,” said Sarah Day, president of consumer and small business for Windstream. “When we announced Project Excel last fall, we made a commitment to accelerate our plans to upgrade broadband speeds. This expansion and surpassing 1,000 markets that now have access to premium speeds are significant milestones that reflect the hard work of our employees and our commitment to continuing to make upgrades to our network.”

Announced in 2015, Project Excel is a program to accelerate the company’s plans to further upgrade broadband speed, increase network capacity and improve the customer experience.

Premium speed availability is dependent upon geographic location. To find out if faster speeds are available for a specific home or small business, please visit