BBWN Bites: SoftBank's High-Flying Data Drone, Net-Neut Backers Boo Biden
Also in today's BBWN Bites: Frontier may face some business challenges, but it's all-in with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers; Horizon Networks keeps on growing; and could operators soon enter the bot biz? It might be worth checking out.
SoftBank launched a new High-Altitude Platform Station (HAPS) business with AeroVironment Inc. The joint venture, called HAPSMobile Inc., intends to construct a HAPS system to deliver telecommunications network-connectivity from the sky for a global business. HAPSMobile developed HAWK30, an unmanned aircraft containing a stratospheric telecommunications platform system that flies at altitudes of approximately 20 kilometers. HAPS are systems where unmanned objects, like aircraft in the stratosphere, are operated like base stations to provide connectivity across wide areas. By using HAPS, SoftBank expects to build stable Internet connections in regions currently unserved by operators today -- areas including mountainous terrain, remote islands and developing countries, the company said. By interconnecting with today's existing broadband networks, SoftBank further expects to deploy wide-area connectivity spanning earth and sky for IoT and 5G solutions, it added. Also, HAPS will be key in rescue and recovery, given it's not impacted by natural or manmade disasters on the ground, SoftBank added.
Some progressives are already upset at Joe Biden, only hours after he officially (and unsurprisingly) threw his hat into the congested Democratic presidential running. Seems tonight he'll be at the home of Comcast exec David Cohen for a fundraiser. In addition to not liking Biden's stance on "big money donations," some also question the former vice president's allegiance to net neutrality, Paste magazine reported. While some service providers are happy with the status quo, others want a return to net neutrality laws.
Frontier Communications will continue to be the "official residential television and Internet provider" for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers through 2024, the two organizations announced. As part of the multi-year agreement, which began in 2016, the Buccaneers and Frontier will work together to engage fans throughout the Tampa community. Initiatives include integrated marketing; Buccaneers-themed Street Team activations and fan- focused contests, as well as the provider's branding at Raymond James Stadium. Terms were not disclosed.
From Sky to Shining Sky
SoftBank and partner AeroVironment formed joint venture HAPSMobile, which built the HAWK30 to deliver telco-based network connectivity from the sky to reach remote areas, support regions post-disaster, and serve growing markets like 5G and IoT.
Fiber broadband provider Horizon Network Partners this week acquired a downtown Indianapolis fiber network, adding 1,000 fiber-miles to Horizon's expanding footprint. The operator now is positioned to serve more than 100 near-network business customers in downtown Indianapolis metro, according to Horizon. Last month, Horizon launched in Columbus, Ohio. With its purchase of the Indianapolis conduit and fiber, Horizon solidifies further growth in the region. Almost 20 multi-dwelling units and data centers will immediately be able to access Horizon's broadband network via existing conduit connections. Horizon operates more than 4,500 route miles in Ohio, Indiana, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Michigan and New York. Network services include high speed Point-to-Point, Point-to-Multipoint, dark fiber, wavelength and data center services.
Revenue for North American home entertainment and leisure robots, perhaps the next step in smart-home acquisitions, will reach $1.8 billion in 2025 due to growing adoption of these devices in the region, according to a report from ResearchAndMarkets. Regardless of network technology, these bots will communicate with household IoT solutions and, therefore, could well be part of an operator's portfolio or specialization.
Kick-Off Time Again for Frontier & Bucs
Frontier Communications is the broadband and network team behind the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, a contract that runs through 2024 -- but no guarantee of a Super Bowl included.
— Alison Diana, Editor, Broadband World News. Follow us on Twitter or @alisoncdiana.
Here's where you can find episode links for 'The Divide,' Light Reading's podcast series featuring conversations with broadband providers and policymakers working to close the digital divide.
As we have for the past two years, Light Reading will present our Cable Next-Gen Europe conference as a free digital symposium on June 21.
Charter has sparked RDOF work in all 24 states where it won bids. The cable op booked about $19 million in RDOF revenues in Q1, and expects to have about $9 million per month come in over the next ten years.
As we have for the past two years, Light Reading will stage the Cable Next-Gen Technologies & Strategies conference as a free digital event over two half-days in mid-March.
Launch of 2-Gig and 5-Gig FTTP tiers in 70-plus markets puts more pressure on cable ops to enhance their existing DOCSIS 3.1 network or accelerate their upgrade activity centered on the new DOCSIS 4.0 specs.
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