Home » Broadband Speed »Community Networks »Consumer News »Public Policy & Gov't »Rural Broadband »Time Warner Cable »Verizon »Wireless Broadband » Currently Reading:

Retired Verizon Employee Tells Rural Upstate New York “Fiber Optics is Old School”

Schuyler County

The fastest thing in Schuyler County, N.Y., isn’t broadband — it’s the Watkins Glen International speedway.

County officials hope to change that, voting unanimously this month to approve an agreement with the Southern Tier Network to bring a regional fiber optic system into the county.

The not-for-profit local development corporation established to build and manage the regional fiber network doesn’t sit well with some county residents, however, including one retired Verizon employee who dismissed the project.

Odessa resident Karen Radenberg called fiber optics technology “old school” and said no private company will connect to the fiber network to expand broadband service.

Radenberg urged the county to consider that communications companies have now moved on to using 4G wireless technology instead of fiber.

“That’s ridiculous,” countered Legislature Chairman Dennis Fagan (R-Tyrone).

Fagan

Fagan pointed to nearby Ontario County’s fiber middle-mile and institutional network which has signed companies, including Verizon, as customers.  Verizon reportedly uses the Ontario County network to deliver backhaul connectivity to its cell tower network in the area.  Ontario County is served by several different landline companies including Frontier Communications, Verizon, and Windstream.  Time Warner Cable is the dominant cable provider, but large sections of the county are deemed too rural for cable television service.

Fagan said the new fiber network will improve the chances private companies will expand broadband across the county, but also help deliver an important upgrade to the region’s emergency responder communications system.  The extremely hilly terrain across much of the southern tier creates problems because of signal gaps.  The new fiber network will allow the county to build radio repeaters into areas where the existing network of microwave communications towers cannot reach.

Schuyler County currently has no plans to sell Internet connectivity to the public, but hopes existing private cable and phone companies — including Time Warner Cable and Verizon Communications — will consider utilizing the network to expand service.  Neither company has shown much interest expanding service to new areas recently, most likely because expansion costs will not be recouped fast enough.

If the county network reduces the cost to expand service, more homes and businesses may now fall within a “Return on Investment” formula that could mean the difference between broadband and dial-up.

Currently there are 6 comments on this Article:

  1. Chawk12 says:

    How the hell does Dennis Fagan think 4G connects? I was involved with the Verizon 4G upgrade. It was initially refered to by management as “fiber to the cell site”.

  2. Chawk12 says:

    Whoops I should have said Karen Radenberg. She must have been in marketing. She’s clueless as far as technology goes.

  3. Scott says:

    Nice to see someone sitting on the county Legislature that actually knows more than this supposed Verizon engineer. No engineer would ever make such a blatently wrong statement claiming 4G is a fiber replacement, that’s just stupid.

    Sounds like someone is more likely trying to play off their credentials for what little they’re worth to undermine a county project they don’t want to pay for with their taxes. If he had just wanted to voice his opinion against the project and disagree that would have been fine, but he lost all credibility claiming “fiber” as old school.

  4. Paul A Houle says:

    I’m a radio amateur and I live close to Ithaca and I can tell you that the terrain at the south end of the finger lakes is the Vietnam of wireless internet.

    The landscape is a plain that was dissected by the glaciers, so there’s a maximum altitude of about 2000 feet — there’s no hill that’s taller than all the other hills, so there’s no place that’s really good for a radio tower of any kind. A tower that overlooks a valley might have a good line-of-site to that valley, but will have a hard time seeing into the next valley over, and in this area the valleys never end.

    The built up part of a town like Ithaca, Watkins Glen or Hammondsport could be covered by a tower, but an area like that can also be covered by DSL or Cable.

    • My grandparents maintained a cottage on Keuka Lake near Penn Yan for many years so I am very familiar with the terrain down there. There is a reason why the tagline for Ithaca is “Ithaca is Gorges.” There are some homes and roads around Ithaca and Corning I would be afraid to park on without a well working emergency brake.

      The terrain is beautiful across the southern tier, but like Pennsylvania and West Virginia, was never favorable to wireless communications.

  5. Ron Dafoe says:

    The way I see it is this:

    These companies have already conditioned people into accepting data caps for wireless technology. The more they push that wireless is the way of the future, the more these companies make. The former verizon engineer is probably only thinkling about his retirement package…

Search This Site:

Contributions:

Recent Comments:

  • Fred Pilot: When a service provider views its customers as adversaries, an act like this is construed as enemy action, resulting in the blow up reported here....
  • Atreidae: That's if you live in a "class 1" area. I'm still well withn "metro melbourne" yet my exchange only has Telstra ports and their considered regional. S...
  • LoomsinJune: " I told her that I will just go ahead and cancel my service and sign up with Time Warner and she seemed more than happy to do that than offer to drop...
  • Dave Hancock: I've had the Verizon Quantum 6 tuner/1TB version for about a month (the 12 tuner/2TB version uses two servers) and am pretty happy with it. I no long...
  • Ernesto Honez: Was that a confirmed and signed "contract"? Was it verbal? Was it sent out in a letter as bulk mailing, or with a first class stamp? Was it's delivery...
  • Matt: I just got off the phone with AT&T. I called saying that I found a promotion through Time Warner for $34.99 for 15 mbps and I am trying to cut dow...
  • Phillip Dampier: It first went to a handful of test markets in upstate New York (not Rochester) and then has been redesignated as a feature enhancement in Maxx markets...
  • Steve Rea: Any idea when the new DVR is coming to Rochester? I remember a story you posed over 2 years ago from the CEO of TWC at the time! saying it was comi...
  • AustinTX: James, my suggestion would be to switch to TWC rental modems, and fry 2-3 of them over the course of several weeks by running 24v AC into the coax con...
  • Dragos: For 1Gbps in Romania we pay around 12 EUR (VAT included - 24%). http://www.rcs-rds.ro/internet-digi-net/fiberlink?t=internet-fix&pachet=digi_ne...
  • James R Curry: Hey, Phillip - While not related to Comcast directly -- I rent my modem from TWC, and while I'd rather buy one outright, there's one big factor ...
  • Sean: I believe that there are issues intermixing DOSCIS 2/3 modems on a node. It's been about 5 years since I've worked with a CMTS so I am by no means an...

Your Account: