Naked DSL

Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
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Naked DSL

CNet has an interesting article on "naked DSL". Basically, there are two camps here - the consumer camp which wants the ability to unbundle DSL from phone service, and then the phone companies/DSL providers which want to force you to pay for phone service in order to get DSL. The FCC is stuck in the middle determining which way to go, evaluating consumer interest and competition against a corporation's "right" to offer products and services it wishes. Of course, the FCC has a say in all telecom matters, so phone companies don't have as many rights as your typical corporation.

I personally cut my landline years ago when I switched to a VoIP service provider, namely Vonage. I have a cellphone as my home backup in case my broadband connection goes down, so I have no need for a landline. I went with cable broadband and not DSL, but if I had chosen DSL, I certainly wouldn't need 3 phone services (Vonage, cellphone, landline). I'd be pretty peeved if SBC forced me to pay for a landline phone service that I never used just to get DSL broadband access. If I didn't have cable broadband in my area and had to get DSL instead (& forced to use their landline phone service), I probably would not have gone with Vonage as my phone provider, since I would have had to pay for a landline anyway.

Let's hope the FCC rules in favor of forcing the phone companies to unbundle DSL broadband from phone services. It seems to be the most logical and fairest decision to ensure that the phone companies don't hold consumers ransom to their phone offerings. According to CNet, it does indeed appear that the FCC will be ruling in favor of unbundling DSL very shortly. See the full CNet story here:

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