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How Do You Define Broadband?



With government initiatives underway to hopefully improve our broadband lives here in the US, the first item on the list appears to be defining exactly what broadband is. Or rather, what definition the government will use. Some say it has to do with speed, some see it as a different picture.

The FCC is looking for input and has published a Public Notice to that effect. You can read more about it on and here is the link to submit brief comments. Longer comments with attachments can be submitted here.

So, don’t just let the FCC know how you would define broadband. Let us know what you think in comments.

I’m sure I would have a much more complicated answer if I thought about it, but my off the cuff response is this: 3G or greater throughput that, along with connection reliability, lived up to the claims made by providers for which I pay every month.



  1. Gavin Miller

    08/21/2009 at 1:00 pm

    Well, the British Government has made a pledge that everyone in the Country who wants Broadband will have access……… minimum 2Mb.

  2. Xavier Lanier

    08/21/2009 at 1:54 pm

    Unfortunately I think a lot of people define it as anything over 56kbps. To Warner’s point- I think the definition needs to include reliability and consistency in transfer speeds.

  3. Travis

    08/21/2009 at 6:49 pm

    10Mbs symmetrical.

  4. double_o_don

    08/23/2009 at 11:20 pm

    My company sent attendees to a couple of FCC/Stimulus meetings in Arizona and found that unfortunately the FCC is starting from the position that Xavier alluded to.

    As of May anything above 56k was considered broadband.

    I think that we will be extremely lucky if it ends up equal to 1.5M ADSL.

    I think that 1.5M would be a worthy target for “rural broadband” since it seems to be the starting point for “broadband” for the vast majority of metropolitan ISP’s.

    I think that the long term cost-to-customer aspect must be included in the target or any successes and benefits of the initiative will be short lived.

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