Salisbury, NC Becomes "America's First 10 Gbps City"
Small relatively unregulated companies often can do things large more regulated companies cannot, just as small compact city-states often can move with a speed that continent-sized countries cannot match.
So it is that the Salisbury, N.C. municipal Internet service provider Fibrant has launched 10 Gbps service throughout the city, to both businesses and residents.
Fibrant has been offering gigabit service for $105 a month, and 50 Mbps service for $45 a month, since about 2011. Fibrant also sells phone and linear video entertainment services.
Billing itself as the first 10-gigabit city, Fibrant believes the market for 10 Gbps really is the business customer, which will pay about $400 a month for the 10-Gbps service.
"To be honest with you, we're not anticipating residents taking 10Gbps service," Fibrant Director of Broadband and Infrastructure Kent Winrich says.
The first 10 Gbps customer is Catawba College, which wants the bandwidth for computer labs and other school buildings. High-definition videoconferencing figures into the college’s heavy bandwidth plans.
Fibrant has 3,300 home and business customers, about 25 percent of households in the community.
One might ask why Fibrant does not have 100 percent market share, and the reason likely is that even with bundles that do not match Fibrant in terms of Internet access speed, Salisbury cable and telco providers still are able to retain much of their original market share by offering enough value, often at lower prices than Fibrant, to anchor in place perhaps 75 percent of the potential market.AT&T U-verse is sold in Salisbury, and the cable operator is Time Warner Cable.