Just a month ago, we reported on Mayor Marty Walsh’s vow to bring faster broadband to Boston. Consumerist has a good breakdown of just how badly it’s needed: Much of Boston might just as well as be named Kabletown given Comcast’s complete dominance of the landscape.
Two years ago, Boston petitioned the FCC to be permitted to regulate cable after a decade of continuous rate increases from Comcast. Comcast, in its turn, claimed that as RCN also operated in the city, it wasn’t a monopoly and the prices were fair.
Technically, Comcast was telling the truth. Although RCN’s service mostly stops abruptly at the Boston city line, RCN does operate inside Boston’s borders. There are little purple rectangles of service dotting Beantown here and there. But the majority of those little dots aren’t residential areas; they’re commercial ones. (One of them is, inexplicably, Boston Common — a big park.)
Unfortunately, short of Walsh grabbing a hard hat and laying his own fiber, it’s unclear if that’s unlikely to change anytime soon. Verizon FiOS has made clear that it is not coming into the city, and it looks like Google Fiber is taking a pass on tackling Boston’s admittedly tricky physical infrastructure. But maybe the mayor has something up his sleeves to change things after all.
“Don’t worry, we’re working on it, trust me,” he said last month. “I can’t talk about it, but we’re working on it.”