Vlog: Mark Radabaugh - Broadband Deployment Policy Best Met through Asymmetric Architecture

What we’re seeing particularly from this pandemic is that the ratio between what people download and upload is actually getting larger.  It’s going more asymmetric than it used to be. But the story we’re hearing now is we need to build symmetric networks.  Networks with 100 meg upload, 100 meg download because of, quote, “remote work.”  If you look at what people do as remote work, the output you generate digitally is actually pretty small. 

The industry is planning and has for a while.  We expect 50-by-5.  We even expect 100-by-10.  But when you just completely out of the blue throw out there, “We need 100-by-100,” it breaks the whole progression of what has historically happened and what the consumers are demanding. 

So we spend $100 billion to build a symmetric network that consumers aren’t demanding, that they aren’t going to use, and you have to pay for that network – it’s not necessarily economically sustainable, particularly if the existing providers can deliver a product at a lower price that meets the consumers’ needs.  And all history is showing that these asymmetric products meet the consumers’ needs.  You now have a gigantic financially, unsustainable albatross you created trying to “future proof “it.  It’s a recipe for waste and huge amount of tax dollars.  And, on top of that, having to subsidize it forever.

We keep reinvesting in it.  We keep expanding it.  And, we keep improving the technology and speeds.  Now, if the government is going to mandate a gigantic jump in those speeds, it completely breaks that model.  I can’t bootstrap it because they’re in a hurry for a particular agenda. 

Mark Radabaugh is President of Amplex Internet in Luckey, OH, and WISPA's Chairman of the Board.