The recent proposal by the FCC to allow cable and phone companies access to cable and phone lines to provide broadband to rural America is a huge concern to many. Much of the debate has centered on allowing DSL and cable companies to run wires from their own wires in large cities. They argue that these two giants have both invested billions of dollars in building their networks and access to those lines would create opportunities for new businesses and jobs.
It is hard to say whether or not this new proposed change will be a revolutionary idea or merely a trade-off for the lack of telephone and internet competition. After all, during the 30s and 40s, it was possible for any competitor to come along and offer Internet service to people who did not have phone service. With cable and phone monopolies, it would seem that the possibility of a new company coming along is a remote one.
Is there another radical solution to providing high speed services to rural America? What if you could extend your current provider’s network, but from the company’s pole or outside their property? Let’s imagine you own a farmhouse in West Virginia and you want to offer satellite Internet service to all of your neighboring properties.
First, you need to locate your pole in the same place where your cable company wants access. You need a contractor to install a mesh network. You need to control your network from your own home. You also want your property line out on the property, so that you can control who can and cannot connect to your network.
When you are finished installing your network, you install your satellite dishes in such a way that they will not interfere with each other. You then add cameras that you control, allowing you to monitor everything that goes on with your new network. You can even program your satellite dish to turn itself off at night. If there is a new customer using your network, it will automatically switch the network off, while the old customers remain online.
Of course, you can’t afford to have a new customer come onto your network. So if you don’t want the new customer using your Internet connection, you have to allow them to leave the property or to disconnect them after a few days. This is a good compromise between your customers and your ability to compete in the marketplace.
Imagine for a moment if you owned a farmhouse in New York and you wanted to offer satellite Internet services to rural locations across Pennsylvania and Ohio. Your contractors could install a high speed network, but you would still need to control it from your own home.
Satellite service providers can use these same principles to offer services like cable and phone. In fact, with a small investment, anyone can create a business plan that allows Netflix to tap into a new network by purchasing a minimum number of channels in each market. The business plan doesn’t even need to rely on a large advertising budget.
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