‘What’s Hot’ List: 1/30/15

‘What’s Hot’ List: 1/30/15

These four lucky cities are now officially getting Google Fiber (The Washington Post, The Switch Blog, 1/27/15) After months of speculation, Google confirmed Tuesday that its ultra-fast Internet service will soon be coming to four more cities — Atlanta, Charlotte, Nashville and Raleigh-Durham, N.C. Those regions, along with more than a dozen cities in their immediate vicinity, will be the latest to benefit from high-speed Internet provided by the search giant.

Government-run Internet service could set off flurry of lawsuits (The Hill, 1/26/15) Regulators will likely run into a host of lawsuits if they make an expected move to override state laws limiting local governments from building out their own broadband Internet services, state legislators and officials predicted on Monday. “Short-term, I can see a lot of litigation over this municipal broadband, a lot of taxpayer dollars wasted litigating this municipal broadband,” Brad Ramsay, the general counsel for the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners, told reporters.

FCC issues warning on Wi-Fi blocking, cites “disturbing” trend (Gigaom, 1/27/15) The Federal Communications Commission on Tuesday sent out a public notice warning hotels, convention centers and other businesses not to tamper with consumers’ personal Wi-Fi hot spots, or else face penalties.

The FCC’s De-Americanization of the Internet (Daily Caller, 1/23/15) The world is watching. The world knows America invented and developed today’s global Internet. Governments around the world also know that America persuaded most all of them to adopt America’s Internet model, specifically not regulating their Internet like they previously regulated their telephone networks.

FCC Finalizing Downloadable Security Tech Committee (Multichannel, 1/23/15) The Federal Communications Commission is close to finalizing the companies and organizations that will comprise a new technology committee that will help the agency pursue a successor to the CableCARD, the removable security module that failed to spark a robust retail market for cable-ready set-tops and other video devices.

FTC Releases Staff Recommendations on the Internet of Things (Rollcall, Technocrat, 1/27/15) A Federal Trade Commission staff report released Tuesday on connected devices known as the Internet of Things says legislation specific to this area of technology is “premature,” but reiterates recommendations for broader legislation on data security and privacy.

On Net Neutrality: Title II Regulation Means Higher Taxes On Consumers (Jamal Simmons, Forbes, January 26, 2015) Congress is diving into the Open Internet debate with hearings last week on new net neutrality bills in the House and the Senate. Intense controversy over the benefits and downsides of turning broadband service into a public utility drags on, underscoring the need for a legislative solution. Many people advance claims on the impact of net neutrality to consumers, but now there are real numbers to discuss—numbers that make it clear that the President’s plan of imposing public utility-like Title II regulation on the Internet would lead to holes in family budgets.

Plenty for Tech to Be Happy About In President’s Latest State of the Union Speech (Recode, 1/21/15) The White House promised that this year’s State of the Union speech would be different and not just be a laundry list of ideas (that would mostly be ignored by the Republican-controlled Congress anyway). That was true, in a way. The White House spent the last two weeks previewing many of the major ideas in the speech, including ideas about free community college and a new tax proposal. The president went into far greater detail about those plans in preview speeches than he did Tuesday night.

Analysts: AT&T could spend $20-22B in AWS-3 auction, more than Verizon (Fierce Wireless, 1/23/15) AT&T’s (NYSE: T) disclosure that it entered into credit agreements worth more than $11 billion has prompted some financial analysts to think that the company may wind up buying more airwaves at the AWS-3 spectrum auction than Verizon Wireless (NYSE: VZ), spending anywhere from $20 billion to $22 billion at the auction. On Thursday AT&T disclosed via a Securities and Exchange Commission filing that it had struck two credit agreements with Mizuho Bank, including one worth a total of $9.2 billion and another for $2 billion.