How much will you pay for TV?
By Dr. Art Lynch
Hulu, Amazon. Google, YouTube, Yahoo, Netflix and Apple are all working on a full alternative to cable. Channels and program access through the Internet and set-top boxes or plug ins. The problem has four dragon heads.
First, not all networks are with any given service. It will be very different than the one stop fits all that most cable companies offer. You will have to pay fo multiple services and even services within or added to those services.Cha-Ching!
Second, access to the needed high speed Internet is not universal.Only 65% of Americans have high speed access, even int he slowest form on most cell phones. High speed broadband is needed for television HD service. 23% of Americans choose to only have access through the slower smartphones.
Third is geography.25%, or one out of four Americans do not have access to high speed internet or cable service. Most of the geographic country (estimates up to 78% do not have high speed beyond smartphones, and 28% has no access to high speed at all. It's not that you cannot afford it, or that it is difficult to get. It is impossible for people who live "off the grid". Geography or populations too small to justify the cost for carriers and services to install and maintain the hardware simply do not have access to broadband.
The fourth dragon head is perhaps the most important and hardest to decapitate. One in four Americans say they cannot afford high speed internet or broadband service.That's a low estimate of the actual number, as homeless and poor are less likely to respond to surveys and polls.
We are behind seven other countries in broadband access, two of which cover larger geographic phone access. High Speed Broadband would become part of our geographic
So it is we are far away from the world the giant telecoms and program providers need to reach the entire country or the 98% they claim they can serve with government assistance.
The rest is politics.
We are behind seven other countries in broadband access, two of which cover larger geographic areas then the US. It will take government help.
There is division, but some of the industry are now pushing for broadband access to be a required as a utility, similar to water, power and basic phone access. High Speed Broadband would become part of our infrastructure, much as roads, waterways, airports and basic police and fire protection are.
It gets much more complicated.
But these are big, powerful and deep pocketed companies who tand to benefit, if they ever decide what part they should pay and how and what part the government should pay, and how that would be financed. There are also legal issues on whether utility is the best way to go, and right of way cost considerations.
Art Lynch, PhD