Posted on February 27, 2015 by Trevor Jones

Yesterday, the FCC announced a ruling in favor of community broadband networks in Chattanooga, Tennessee and Wilson, North Carolina that will have sweeping implications for community broadband networks nationwide.  Each of these communities had been restricted from expanding their community owned broadband networks by restrictive state laws inhibiting community investment.  Such laws currently exist in over 20 states, and while no such law is currently in place in Maine, Maine’s dominant cable company is actively …
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Posted on February 26, 2015 by GWI

  How much email do we send and receive daily? About 183 billion worldwide, if not more, according to an Email Statistics Report. Business email traffic dominates with 100 billion emails sent and received daily, while consumer email accounts are slowly being replaced by social networking communication. It’s hard to remember life before email and the youngest generation of online users has never known life without online communication. So where do the rules of email …
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Posted on February 19, 2015 by Trevor Jones

In the past few weeks, both Maine and the Federal Government have redefined their definitions of Broadband.  Maine’s new definition of 10 megabits per second download by 10 megabits per second upload differs from the federal definition, which is now 25 megabits down by 3 megabits up.  Whereas in the past we’d taken the position that a different definition of broadband hurts Maine, in this case we believe Maine’s proposed definition offers compelling advantages as …
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Posted on February 14, 2015 by Trevor Jones

Over the last year, Maine’s been buzzing about the need for better broadband.  The conversation started with Craig Anderson’s article last January that noted how Ookla had ranked Maine near the bottom of the pack among states in broadband speed.  Just over a year later, there is a robust dialogue in Augusta, a new state definition of broadband, and as many as 35 proposed bills to expand broadband service under discussion at the legislature. We’ve …
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Posted on February 4, 2015 by GWI

At GWI, it’s our privilege to support businesses and nonprofit organizations in reaching their goals through access to high speed broadband. For many businesses, broadband helps improve productivity, supports virtual collaboration and geographic expansion and powers e- commerce to boost sales. For one of our non-profit customers, the Information Technology Exchange based in Belfast, a recent fiber installation has not only helped them dramatically increase productivity – they’re using it to provide affordable computers and …
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Posted on January 28, 2015 by Trevor Jones

Last week, the Portland Press Herald reported that the “State says 80 percent of Mainers unserved by broadband.”  Just the week before, Maine boasted that 95% of its citizens had access to broadband Internet service. What happened? Don’t be alarmed.  No one shut down a major broadband network.  Maine changed its definition of broadband from a paltry 1.5 megabits per second download to 10 megabits per second download and 10 megabits per second upload.  In …
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Posted on January 17, 2015 by Fletcher Kittredge

2015 looks to be a more promising one for Maine’s economic infrastructure, thanks to definitive action by a pair of Maine communities and the leadership of business and political leaders at the local, state and federal level. As last year began, the landscape appeared quite a bit bleaker. On January 8, 2014, an article in the Portland Press Herald by business writer Craig Anderson shocked many business and political leaders. He reported that the State …
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Posted on December 11, 2014 by Trevor Jones

2014 has proven to be a year of increasing interest in high speed fiber networks. At GWI, we’ve built and started providing service on a small town-owned broadband network in Rockport, and begun construction on a similar fiber-to-the-premise broadband network in South Portland. We’ve also connected hundreds of businesses to ultra-fast Internet using the Three Ring Binder and other fiber networks. All this heightened interest made me think that perhaps some of our readers might …
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Posted on December 4, 2014 by Trevor Jones

Every day more Americans “cut the cord,” ditching cable or satellite to watch TV by other methods. Some are motivated to cut the ballooning costs of pay TV. Others want to take control over how they watch video and avoid paying for channels they never watch or bundles of services they don’t need. In fact, according to this Wall Street Journal article, 19% of American homes are “cable free,” relying on broadcast, high-speed Internet and …
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Posted on November 26, 2014 by GWI

For as long as cable television has been delivering a variety of viewing options into our homes, cable customers have expressed their frustration with having to pay for channels they are not watching. The idea of à la carte cable options has long been a dream for cable customers and a nightmare for cable companies that have held a tight grip on this content for decades. Last month, the Federal Communication Commission (FCC) took the …
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Posted on November 19, 2014 by Trevor Jones

The first kernel of our gigabit fiber to the home network in South Portland was created when South Portland’s IT Director Chris Dumais wrote an RFP for a network he needed to connect city buildings and asked that bidders connect homes and businesses along the way. We’re very excited to make this network available to South Portland residents, but the first phase of the network is really small and we need to connect customers really …
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Posted on November 5, 2014 by Trevor Jones

There is much excitement about the recent announcements by Rockport and South Portland that the two cities will be deploying 1 gigabit per second municipal broadband networks to homes. Not surprisingly, there is also anger and frustration from certain quarters – most especially the incumbent ISP’s who have little to gain and much to lose from the market entry of a competing network. These large corporations have successfully employed a number of arguments to slow …
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Posted on October 16, 2014 by Trevor Jones

If you follow next-generation broadband communications at all, you’re familiar with places like Kansas City, Chattanooga and San Antonio. These were some of the first cities in our country to get gigabit speeds into homes either with the help of Google Fiber or through direct municipal investment. These cities are part of a group gathering on Monday to discuss next-generation broadband availability that includes tech industry hubs like Boston, Massachusetts, Palo Alto, California and Santa …
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Posted on October 2, 2014 by Trevor Jones

There is much excitement about the recent announcements by Rockport and South Portland that the two cities will be deploying 1 gigabit per second municipal fiber to the home networks to homes. Not surprisingly, there is also anger and frustration from certain quarters – most especially the incumbent ISP’s who have little to gain and much to lose from the market entry of a competing network. These large corporations have successfully employed a number of arguments …
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Posted on September 19, 2014 by Trevor Jones

This week Fletcher and I attended the Community Fiber Networks conference in Springfield, Massachusetts. Community leaders throughout New England came together there to talk about the impact of better broadband to community development, share experiences in deploying networks, and discuss important policy issues around broadband deployments. During a panel discussion yesterday, FCC Special Counsel for External Affairs Gigi Sohn made a remarkable statement that I shared on Twitter: @GigiBSohnFCC “The next six months are going …
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Posted on September 6, 2014 by Trevor Jones

One of this week’s memorable moments came on Wednesday morning, as I watched Bloomberg TV’s two spots on Maine broadband with considerably mixed emotions. Bloomberg reporter Michael McKee doesn’t pull any punches. As you can see from this spot, he contrasts the 150 megabits per second available bandwidth in New York City to our statewide average of 9 megabits per second here in Maine and explains how our challenges of population density and geography make …
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Posted on August 28, 2014 by Trevor Jones

  Two weeks ago, I took time out from a vacation camping in Western Maine to travel to Rockport for the announcement of the new gigabit fiber to the home network we helped deploy there. It was only much later, today in fact, that it occurred to me that I started my journey to launch Maine’s first gigabit municipal fiber to the home network in Bryant Pond – the home of the nation’s last hand-cranked …
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Posted on August 21, 2014 by Fletcher Kittredge

Today, Maine faces challenges with its broadband being significantly inferior to 48 other U.S. States. While our broadband isn’t deteriorating, the rest of the country is developing superior broadband solutions at a far faster rate. This has a lasting negative impact on Maine’s economy. In the early 2000’s, the term “broadband” became the common definition for Internet access that was faster, more reliable and had better quality of service than dial-up. The problem with the …
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Posted on August 14, 2014 by Fletcher Kittredge

Maine is severely disadvantaged when it comes to broadband. As a provider of broadband Internet access, we care about the impact of broadband on Maine’s economy. We care so much, we’re willing to shine a light on the state of broadband. The situation is disheartening and demands attention. Did you know that one recent study showed 49 other states have broadband services that are superior to what Maine offers? It found Maine’s broadband significantly slower, …
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Posted on July 31, 2014 by Trevor Jones

Recently, we migrated both our customer email and our internal email platform to new services. This resulted in a temporary surge in spam in my own inbox and a rise in questions from customers on the GWI Facebook page about managing spam in their inbox. Now that my spam filters are working well again and I’m spending less time managing spam manually, I thought it was time to share a few tips on effectively controlling …
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