DirecTV May Try Broadband on Power Lines

Satellite television provider DirecTV Group Inc. may test delivering high-speed Internet service through power lines in a major U.S. city in the next year, its chief executive said on Monday. DirecTV and others are talking to companies that specialize in providing broadband through the electrical grid, Chief Executive Chase Carey said at the Reuters Global Technology, Media and Telecoms Summit in New York. "We're not the only ones talking to them," Carey said, in response to a question on whether DirecTV would consider a test in a major city. "I think you'll see some meaningful tests in this arena." DirecTV would like to test delivering Internet access on power lines in a "top 50 city where you're covering at least half the city."

While DirecTV and fellow satellite TV operator EchoStar Communications Corp. have managed to keep increasing their subscriber base in the face of stiff competition from cable operators, Wall Street analysts have long questioned what broadband strategy the satellite operators will employ to counter competitive pressures. "We think it would be a good thing to have a third, a fourth or a fifth entrant in broadband and if we can be helpful in pushing that forward and if there's an opportunity for us to intelligently invest in doing so, we would," said Carey. Controlling ownership of DirecTV will change hands to media mogul John Malone's Liberty Media Holding Corp. from Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. before the end of the year. Liberty Media is also a founding shareholder in broadband-over-powerline company, Current Group.

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News source: Reuters

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The problem with any wired broadband in the US is that there are a lot of old wires out there.

There are too many places that the underlying network, wether cable, telephone, or electric, needs to be improved to provide the quality backbone needed for broadband.

Wireless (i.e. 802.16) has a real edge here because you don't need to rip out wires at every house to upgrade the network.

Considering how poor HomePlug and the like networks work, I'd be amazed if most homes were ready to go for 200Mbps broadband-over-power; no different from how so much of the US can't get cable-internet and DSL.

The Company announced in September 2006 that we received a purchase order from Duke Energy for BPL equipment in the aggregate amount of approximately $3.5 million. We have fulfilled about 95% of that purchase order and continue to work towards the completion of it. The commercial deployment of our BPL communications platform in Charlotte, North Carolina continues.

As announced this month, the Company has entered into a new research and development project with Consolidated Edison of New York. This project is based in Manhattan and is focused on Con Edison’s underground system. The Company had also announced early last year that it had moved to the grid management phase in our Westchester, New York deployment with Con Edison. We have completed the work there as defined by the contract with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and have received payment accordingly.

The Company continues to work with San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E) in San Diego, CA, Entergy Corporation in Little Rock, Arkansas and FirstEnergy Service Company in Akron, Ohio. Albeit small in nature, these pilots are important to the proof of concept phase many utilities are exploring.

The introduction of Ambient’s newest intelligent grid applications, current and voltage sensing, enhancing our Smart Grid capabilities was unveiled in April. These applications are vital in improving energy and operational efficiency for utilities. Ambient has also introduced our newest medium-voltage inductive coupler to our utility partners, which is significantly reduced in size and weight. Additionally, we have progressed to the third generation of our network management system, AmbientNMS, and added a service management system into it.

By enabling BPL technology for utilities to improve energy and operational efficiency, especially in an aging grid infrastructure, Ambient has positioned itself as a leading innovator in delivering Smart Grid capabilities. Ambient will continue to focus on the development of new applications and products for the Smart Grid as well as deployments with our utility and technology partners. We also continue to strengthen our existing relationships and will seek additional partners as needed. Ambient Corp.

Yeah, try broadband through the power lines. Here are the packages.


Tier 1: For the low price of 99.95 a month we will give you blazing speeds of 768kbps down, and 16kbps up. Currently that is all we offer. :P

exit said,
A little faster then That

You could not see the sarcasm there? Obviously you don't know that much about Direct TV internet service. :P Besides, China achieved 1gpbs internet over power lines to certain customers a few years ago. The 200mpbs wouldn't be fast enough for me. :P