WASHINGTON, DC – USTelecom launched a campaign today urging the Federal Communications Commission to consider the enormous growth and investment in the business broadband marketplace as it contemplates updating regulation. Newly released 2013 data collected by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) show a multitude of providers – cable, fiber and fixed wireless – compete for business customers in a thriving marketplace.
Competitive business broadband facilities have emerged just as Congress envisioned in the 1996 Telecom Act. Prices are declining for the companies that purchase access to backhaul and other special access services, with discounts now the norm. As a result of this competition, there is no longer a predominant provider of business broadband services as there was when the Telecom Act was developed. And, in fact, the original providers that were subject to regulation now are seeing their market share decline as business customers move away from copper-based services.
A major game-changer is entry of the nation’s major cable operators, which are using their large network footprints to serve multiple business locations. New competition from cable and other providers isn’t captured in the FCC’s 2013 data, which at best provides a snapshot of a single point in time. In just the last two years – 2014 and 2015 – cable business service units have invested an estimated $6 billion in capital, while competitive fiber providers an estimated $9 billion.
“This new competition is leading to a virtuous cycle of innovation, investment, increased choice, economic growth and job creation – exactly the kind of competition the commission desires,” said USTelecom Walter McCormick. “We urge the FCC to recognize that the marketplace has changed, and to innovate with us by modernizing its policy and regulation.”