Lakeland’s Move Into Municipal Broadband
For over 20 years, Lakeland has slowly installed fiber optic cables. These installations have enabled the city to provide high-speed connectivity to local libraries, Lakeland electric substations, Polk Country School District, public safety and other facilities. Also, Lakeland leases dark fiber to local suppliers to introduce high-speed internet connection to businesses and other vital organizations in the area. SurfLakeland is known to provide wireless services for free through portions of Downtown Laketown. They make use of a fiber network to connect wireless antennas across the whole city.
The problem is that while this fiber connects these large companies, schools and other city-owned buildings to the internet, the city’s residents are left with one major ISP to deliver them the internet. This provider is not known for the best service, speed or prices.
With the help of a high-speed internet connection, the city can boost competition in the community. Not only that but it also has a significant impact on the economic development of the town. It also affects other sectors including technology, education, and amenities that are important to businesses and residents.
Current Broadband Industry In Lakeland
While the City of Lakeland has done an admirable job building out the fiber that connects the city, they haven’t bee able to join the residents up to cheap & fast internet that that fiber can bring them. Electric service continues to be the city’s bread and butter, but its become increasingly clear that internet access has become a valuable service that the city should provide.
That is why Lakeland is thinking about joining the ranks of other enterprising communities. About 285 electric cooperatives and 200 municipalities in the US are known to provide broadband services. They make use of fiber optic technology to provide high speed and reliable services.
Why are municipalities investing in broadband? What are the benefits?
With over 200 municipalities in the US providing broadband services, the benefits are starting to become more and more apparent. Here’s some of the biggest reasons
- Helps With Upgrading the Electrical Grid
With the help of fiber networks, electric utilities can deploy new electric grid modernization capabilities. Smart grid technologies require high-speed communication platforms that can only be implemented using fiber networks. Distribution utilities are known to leverage their investment in fiber so that they can support applications such as recloser deployment which has the ability to millisecond changes to the electric grid. Other applications include:
- Automatic reconfiguration of distribution resources which comes with 50 milliseconds switching capabilities to remove or reduce the effect of interruptions.
- High-security dark fiber penetration into the distribution system so that it can support modernization applications.
- Improvement of economic development
In today’s economy, businesses of all sizes need internet access to be productive. If a company is unable to gain access to a high-speed internet connection, they will look for a different location to operate. Technology-based companies are the ones that require large amounts of bandwidth to run their business. Regardless of technology, the need for broadband is evident.
- Increased availability
With the availability of high-speed internet connection, the economic condition of the city has also improved tremendously. The areas that are equipped with fiber technology are the areas that are called fiber ready. These are the areas where you will find businesses thriving. Businesses move to these areas as they can get fiber services available at competitive rates. Having a high-speed broadband connection helps businesses to operate smoothly.
- Increased adoption
Broadband affordability is correlated with broadband adoption. Since the broadband connection is easy to afford, more companies and residents in the city can afford it. Thus, it can be said that the city is influencing everyone to adopt a high-speed broadband connection by providing competitive services
- Smart city technologies
Municipalities all across the world are readily deploying technology infrastructure to support connectivity across their regions. Local government is putting in extra effort to connect more community infrastructure and devices to help a smarter community.
The concept of building a smart city is based on the deployment of digital technology that can control public assets, make municipal services, and generate data.
Internet Built for the Future
The city offers an array of broadband products and services that are useful for everyone.
Internet Built For Business
The city is known to provide high-performance, internet connection to residents and businesses in the area. The internet services provided to the residents and businesses are tiered services which mean they can purchase exactly the amount of bandwidth they need.
The city is also able to offer symmetrical, direct, and fiber optic internet connection to its users. They make use of service tiers to match or exceed the existing services. This is done to attract more customers. The city also aims to provide extremely fast internet at really low rates. This makes the life of people better in the city. Not to forget businesses can function smoothly.
The packages offered to the citizens allow them to capture the market. The city offers individual packages, but they will also bundle these packages to provide triple and double play options to the users.
The market continues to change from time to time. Therefore, the city will change the packages according to the prevailing marketing conditions. Since they provide symmetrical services, users can get the same upload and download speed. This allows residents to enjoy more benefits as they can upload and download large files without any hassle.
From the above discussion, we can conclude that a high-speed broadband connection has completely changed the city for the better. Starting from individuals to businesses, everyone can enjoy the benefits of high-speed internet connection. Most importantly, it contributes to their economic development as well.