[CalFiber] Biden's announcement on broadband plan ($100 billion, focused on fiber)

Ernesto Falcon ernesto at eff.org
Wed Mar 31 09:28:20 PDT 2021

A lot on fiber in it. Notably the President wants investments to be "future proofed" which only means fiber, but the legislation right now has no future proof definition in it (I've offered what I wrote in SB 1130). I think this gives an opportunity to drive it at fiber exclusively given the President's direction.


I'd appreciate thoughts on how to define future proof. For everyone's benefit, this is what I had last year to define "future proof" in SB 1130

"Future-proof infrastructure" means data networks that, once built, do not require new construction that involves significant public works in order to deliver higher speeds that mirror advancements in network equipment. A future-proof infrastructure shall have sufficient capacity to deliver to end users 100 mbps downstream, 100 mbps upstream, and a latency averaging at or less than 20 milliseconds to allow real-time interactive applications.

I think you can actually go lower on latency but the political compromise was we couldn't just discredit cable outright in the grant program, really I think you can go down to 12 ms average to basically only mean fiber per the FCC's measurement below. What do folks think?

"DSL latencies (between 11 ms to 40 ms) were slightly higher than those for cable (13 ms to 27 ms).  Fiber ISPs showed the lowest latencies (10 ms to 12 ms).  The differences in median latencies among terrestrial-based broadband services are relatively small and are unlikely to affect the perceived quality of highly interactive applications."

Report  https://www.fcc.gov/reports-research/reports/measuring-broadband-america/measuring-fixed-broadband-tenth-report

Ernesto Omar Falcon
Senior Legislative Counsel
Electronic Frontier Foundation
Office: 415 436 9333 ext. 182
Cell: 202 716 0770

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