Peter : On Rad's Radar?
Peter
| Peter Radizeski of RAD-INFO, Inc. talking telecom, Cloud, VoIP, CLEC, and The Channel.

telco

Stalled Stimulus of Broadband

January 8, 2010

It was July of 2009 when the applications for BTOP and BIB awards were due. It's January 2010 and shovel ready awards have been granted mainly for middle mile projects. Where are the rest of the awards?

We can look at the failure of Muni Wi-Fi (last mentioned when EarthLink's wi-fi network in Phillie was acquired by the city for $2M).

Fostering Broadband Competition

December 29, 2009

One of the Broadband Stimulus grants (at $33M) went to North Georgia Network Cooperative. ComputerWorld is all atwitter because this grant means that NGNC will compete with Windstream, which already offers 10Mb to 100MB Internet Access in that region. And "Windstream covers about 70 percent of the area that North Georgia Network Cooperative proposes to cover using government money".

The irony is that pundits are criticizing the FCC's new National Broadband Policy precisely because it does NOT include any measures to increase competition for broadband. Now one of the few grants approved actually will increase broadband competition in Dawsonville and the surrounding area and one media outlet is upset.

It's The Customer Experience Stupid

December 14, 2009

I'm flying today on AA. They will charge your credit card for everything -- even the unfiltered, warm, smelly air if we could - airline. You can speak to a human at the airport gate who will tell you to call the 800 number, who will tell you to do it online. 

This same airline will charge you for snacks (no free peanuts, but $4 for a bad cookie <-- who makes a bad cookie?!) and for checked baggage. And they still lost $359 million - while pissing off their customer base.
 
I watched as they told a passenger he was going to have to check his bag at the gate for $20 because his wheels put it 4 inches outside the box.



Were There Highlights in 2009?

November 25, 2009

Ken Camp's Year in Review prompted me to write this. It's been an interesting year. SIP, UC, Cloud, Merger. That's really how I see the blur that was 2009. I attended so many conferences this year.

Windstream Grabs Another

November 25, 2009

Windstream follows up its acquisition of CLEC NUVOX with the purchase of an ILEC. Windstream Announces Acquisition of Iowa Telecommunications Services for $261M in cash, $269M in shares and $598M in debt (see Reuters).

In its latest SEC 10Q filing, it states:

"On November 2, 2009, Windstream entered into a definitive agreement to acquire all of the issued and outstanding shares of common stock of NuVox. As discussed under "Pending Transactions" above, Windstream expects to pay approximately $280.0 million in cash and assume $180.0 million in net debt in the first half of 2010 as part of the transaction, which will be financed with existing cash on hand and borrowings available under the Company's revolving line of credit.

Open Neutral Fair

November 20, 2009

There are a bunch of debates raging over the telecommunications infrastructure. 

Congress has looked at Open Access bills for cellular networks. By this we mean that a consumer can use any available handset or device on any cell network. This is kind of the Carterphone concept for cellular.

The 700 MHz auction had open access provisions built right in, so VZW's 4G/LTE network will need to incorporate Open Access.

Spectrum is a finite resource. TV, radio, public safety and the cell companies all share access to various licensed spectrums.





Pimping Your Product

November 2, 2009

On a listserv today, I replied to a wholesale account exec at a reseller that had just plugged his service to the list. In the reply, I said "that's one way to pimp your product" then went on to explain that he missed the point of the original email -- and in fact doesn't quite get the goal of the membership of that list/group.

Well, the AE got offended and pinged me offlist. I always say "pimping your stuff". Let's face it: in telecom most everyone is pitching and selling and pushing a commodity. Not much original stuff (except maybe fiber guys).

NYT Explains Traffic Pumping

November 1, 2009

The New York Times has an article explaining "traffic pumping" here. This practice largely centers around Iowa Independent phone companies who are partnering with phone service companies like chat lines and free conferencing companies. AT&T has been complaining to the FCC about it for a while Many of these companies are in litigation to get paid by the IXC's.  What it really comes down to is that the "new" FCC has to take a stand on Inter-Carrier Compensation soon. It has been "studying" the issue for years.

Telecom Billing Issues

September 25, 2009

I moderated a panel on Telecom Billing Issues at Channel Partners this week. It was a full room. Apparently, one or two people thought it was too hard on the carriers (or I was too hard on a carrier). 

If you have been in telecom for more than a year (and have any voice customers) then you know that there are billing issues. Heck, even on simple IP or transport bills there are errors and surprises.

Pouring Billions

September 21, 2009

The WSJ has an article titled, "AT&T, Verizon Still Pouring Billions Into Mobile Networks". It notes that cellcos have already spent billions upgrading their networks to 2.5G and 3G -- and now will spend billions more on 4G.

In addition, both companies are also dumping billions into International routes, domestic broadband networks, and their respective triple play networks, U-Verse and FiOS. 

On top of that, both companies have been acquiring companies, like Alltel and Centennial. Ummm, how are they not toppled over in debt? 

These companies have felt intense pricing pressure from cable companies as well as T-Mobile and Sprint. Customer Acquisition and Retention costs have to be high, even as ARPU remains about the same.





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