“Don’t let them drop us!” Landline users protest AT&T copper retirement plan | California hears protests as AT&T seeks end to Carrier of Last Resort obligation. ( arstechnica.com )

“Don’t let them drop us!” Landline users protest AT&T copper retirement plan | California hears protests as AT&T seeks end to Carrier of Last Resort obligation.::California hears protests as AT&T seeks end to Carrier of Last Resort obligation.

homesweethomeMrL ,

How much did we, the taxpayers, pay telcos over the last 40 years?

jenny_ball ,
@jenny_ball@lemmy.world avatar

they should replace copper with fiber

Alpha71 ,

Do newly built houses have landlines still installed in them?

vox ,
@vox@sopuli.xyz avatar

wtf america still has copper lines???

nightwatch_admin ,

Why not? It’s cheap, robust, and is relatively easy to power, even in dire circumstances. IMHO it’s a separate thing from fiber internet.

Maggoty ,

We're proud of our dysfunction. And we're going to stop telecommunications service to whole towns to prove it!

saltesc ,

Heh. In Australia, everyone must have access to standard phone services and at the same price everywhere. If a telco dropped their copper infrastructure, it must be for a replacement that is just as reliable and costs nothing to the consumer. The idea is that everyone has a right to telco services with the ability to always be able to contact emergency services.

Recently a telco had all their services go down. Immediately the fed started investigating. The latest ongoing is the telco had to disclose to them that ~2500 emergency call attempts failed...

The new information will be considered by the Australian Communications and Media Authority as part of its independent investigation into Optus' compliance with rules on emergency calls.

The rules cover obligations such as conducting welfare checks on people making unsuccessful emergency calls during an outage and providing access to emergency call services.

Compensation for impacted customers and ensuring confidence in the triple zero system will also be explored in the federal probe.

The Australian Consumer Watchdog would not allow AT&T to do what they're doing unless they pay for it all and prove that the new tech will be faultless.

The downside is Australia is huge and population low, so new infrastructure costs a lot per capita.

Maggoty ,

That's the way it was supposed to be in the US too. But it hasn't played out that way. They've pulled this exact trick before and the second they get permission they start cutting off towns. And knowing the CPUC they aren't going to have to fight very hard to get that permission.

Gork ,

"We don't care. We're the phone company."

pastermil ,

Is there a reason to maintain a legacy network and not switching to the fiber one?

DarkMessiah ,

[Thread, post or comment was deleted by the moderator]

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  • SatanicNotMessianic , (edited )

    Residents also described problems with wireless service that could serve as the only replacement for copper networks in areas that AT&T hasn't deemed profitable enough for fiber lines.

    When I lived rurally, I had two choices - landline or edge cellular network which was unreliable. I also had the absolute best connectivity of all of my neighbors because not only was I the only one able to have an account on the ISP’s over-subscribed DSL line (at a whopping 1.5 Mbps), I was also fortunate enough to have the house with the highest elevation - literally on top of the hill. No one else had any cell reception at all. Eventually AT&T actually gave me a femtocell box, which routed all of my cellular calls across my shitty DSL, but they weren’t having to pay the fees to the edge provider.

    Part of being granted monopoly rights when doing things like laying lines is that you have to take the good with the bad.

    knotthatone ,

    Yes. Because it still works and hasn't all been replaced yet.

    The burden is on the telcos to prove otherwise and justify all the subsidies they got to wire unprofitable areas.

    HexadecimalSky ,

    I have family that lives outside of LA, that are still on copper lines for phone and internet. How, idk.

    Also, our neighborhood just got fiber access a couple months ago, and we live in a decently large city.

    Copper landline for many, is the only option available that isn't satellite.

    RegalPotoo ,
    @RegalPotoo@lemmy.world avatar

    Laying fibre is really expensive - in really rural areas it could be $100k+ per subscriber, so you will never see a return on investment for doing that.

    The original deal that the telcos struck was that the government would foot a big chunk of the bill of replacing the copper network with fibre even in places where it would make good business sense to do so (and arguably the telcos could have paid for themselves), on the proviso that they also either a) lay fibre; or b) maintain the copper network; in places where it makes no business sense to do so. On balance, the telcos came out well ahead on the deal, but still want to pick option C - none of the above, we take the money and run.

    grayman ,

    Fiber isn't that much. RDOF in the US is proving that it's averaging about $1000 per home to lay fiber. Adjusted for inflation, that's cheaper than copper was 100 years ago. At $80-$120 ARPU, the ROI is a few years at most.

    I'd argue the issue is that these regulated monopolies are bloated to the point that they just don't have the money to lay fiber.

    Look at the cash sheets of all the ISPs... They all make the vast majority of their profits on the internet infrastructure and services, but blow it all on everything else they do... TV, VoIP, mobile VNO, sports teams rights, and other stupid crap.

    Stupidmanager ,

    Laying fibre is really expensive - in really rural areas it could be $100k+ per subscriber, so you will never see a return on investment for doing that

    And yet, a local company in my state just ran fiber to 5000 homes in my area for what I told was 1 million. They used directional drilling, it was cheap and easy. Then all the sudden my local phone and cable company “also” put in fiber.

    So while I’m in a suburb, I know for a fact these guys are all over the state and growing, including rural (and so is the local telco/cableco). I challenge that 100k number, that’s bullshit telco numbers. The word is unprofitable, it is unprofitable to run fiber when you are the only competitor.

    Buddahriffic ,

    Rural could mean a km out of town there's a few km of houses spaced out by an acre or two along a well maintained road.

    Or it could mean over an hour from the nearest town, down first a well maintained road, then a gravel road, then a dirt road surrounded by dense forest and/or lakes/swamp, there's a community of 6 families each 5km from their neighbours.

    If the total distance is longer than 100km (60 miles), it'll need a repeater/amplifier, which also needs power.

    At some point it becomes more worthwhile to establish a wireless connection, but even then you either need a satellite (at geosynchronous orbit, which has high latency), a constellation of satellites at a lower orbit, or a series of towers with line of sight of each other (or line of sight plus atmospheric bouncing).

    We're not talking about the average case, but there are extreme cases that I wouldn't doubt cost a large amount that will never be recouped via reasonable subscription fees.

    Squizzy ,

    Copper lines have backup in the network to power them during outages but fiber relies on power inside the house which is unlikely to have a battery backup in the event of a blackout

    nightwatch_admin ,

    Not just houses, the power requirements in eg regional switch buildings are serious too, not something a battery will sustain for too long.

    Nfamwap ,

    Here in the UK, our exchange buildings have emergency battery and diesel generator backups so if power does go out for an extended period, then at least the head ends and exchange equipment will still function.

    Even a relatively small building will have a backup generator with a 1000 litre fuel tank.

    GreatAlbatross ,
    @GreatAlbatross@feddit.uk avatar

    We're currently phasing out copper connections in the UK. It's now at the "stop-sell" phase for several regions (new copper connections cannot be provisioned).
    When fibre connections first arrived, OpenReach (the main network) would supply the connection with a battery backup unit (BBU).
    Nowadays, they're only supplied to users with specific needs.

    I've considered fitting a UPS to my networking, but decided it just wasn't worth it.
    We've had one power cut in the last 5 years, vs the cost of running a UPS for all that time, I'm not that fussed!

    Buddahriffic ,

    I've been running my modem/router on a UPS for a few years now and it's great not having my connection dropping for brief flickers. It's also nice knowing that the signal quality is good, regardless of what is coming out of the wall or if my freezer, fridge, microwave, and oven elements happen to cycle on at the same time. That probably wouldn't cause damage, but it might leave the device in a state that requires a reboot.

    LordKitsuna ,

    Ziply fiber ONT have a little battery on them for exactly this. Seems to last around 4 hours in my experience. Seems reasonable to me.

    Squizzy ,

    Yes and no, you'd need a modem with a backup too. Where I am ONT and Modem are generally provider equipment and serial/ addresses for ONTs are used to enable them so they couldn't just use anything.

    They did get an all in one with a battery but the regulations wouldn't allow for it because it closed the customer in to that provider.

    LordKitsuna ,

    Ziply ONT does the fiber translation and just spits out ethernet which you can plug into anything you want. I use it with a little 4port 2.5G router box and opensense. So I've just got a basic APC UPS for my router to keep it alive as well

    Squizzy ,

    It must be a point to point network to allow for a spurious Pants though, correct?

    LordKitsuna ,

    Nah they just merged the basic modem functions into the ONT it seems. Just enough for ethernet

    Maggoty ,

    You assume there's going to be a switch. They've done this playbook before and left towns completely cut off.

    autotldr Bot ,

    This is the best summary I could come up with:


    AT&T's application to end its landline phone obligations in California is drawing protest from residents as state officials consider whether to let AT&T off the hook.

    "If approved by the CPUC, over 580,000 affected AT&T customers would be left with fewer options in terms of choice, quality, and affordability," warns the Rural County Representatives of California.

    Residents also described problems with wireless service that could serve as the only replacement for copper networks in areas that AT&T hasn't deemed profitable enough for fiber lines.

    Even some residents who have access to cable companies, which generally offer VoIP service, aren't ready to give up their old copper landlines.

    The last time I tried to report a grass fire adjacent to a Cal State University, the dispatcher didn't know what city I was calling from."

    An AT&T filing on January 16 disputed claims that low-income households could see their bills double and that "AT&T has stated that it intends to shut down its telephone network."


    The original article contains 731 words, the summary contains 163 words. Saved 78%. I'm a bot and I'm open source!

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