The FCC had previously labelled broadband as the Internet connection with speeds at 200 kbps (kilobits per second) or more but now it has revised the broadband definition as 786 kbps or more.
This change in the definition shows where the U.S. is positioned in terms of Internet growth. Other countries such as South Korea, Japan and others have broadband speeds in the range of 25 Mbps (Million bits per second) to 100 Mbps, considerably faster by nearly 100 times and in some cases costing the same as the local offerings.
Ten years ago, the FCC had set the bar at 200 kbps and raised it from 56k speed of dial-up modems. Other changes the FCC plans to make include:
- a mapping plan to get a better breakdown of broadband availability across the country.
- Specifically breaking down broadband definitions into five speed tiers, the fastest being 6 Mbps.
- Pushing ISPs to be more transparent about their upload and download speeds.
Between 768 kbps and 1.5 Mbps is now classified as "basic broadband."
It is sad that the major companies are not providing us with top speeds, while South Korea and Japan already boast 100 Mbps for the majority of the population. In my opinion, the U.S. is stifling innovation and content with profits made with existing infrastructure.