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Analysis: Title II regulation, with forbearance, the best path forward

12/19, 12:18am

Double-talk from industry supports notion that some regulation would benefit consumers

Since President Barack Obama voiced his support for reclassification of ISPs as utilities, there has been much debate back and forth, and back again on the topic of "Title II" regulation of carriers. Would it be the dystopian nightmare anti-government zealots and the carriers proclaim, or would it provide a golden utopia of progress for consumers and American businesses alike?

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Manufacturers lobby opposes possible Title II regulation of Internet

12/10, 9:04pm

Letter From National Association of Manufacturers claims net neutrality 'slowing business'

The U.S. National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) has sent a letter to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and leaders in Congress to oppose the possible, and much more strict, proposals for Internet regulation as put forth by the FCC. The letter, which claims that the current standard of net neutrality "severely threaten continuing growth," functions as a rebuttal to a similar letter from the opposite point of view sent last May by over 100 tech companies, who argued that net neutrality was the only option that would protect Internet growth and well-being.

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Comcast sued for using customer routers as public hotspots

12/10, 8:29am

Scheme providing public Wi-Fi from customer homes is security risk, increases costs, claims lawsuit

Comcast is being sued by subscribers of its Internet service for hosting a public hotspot within their home. Joycelin Harris and Toyer Grear filed with the US District Court of Northern California over the company's decision to allow home routers to open up the routers of its own customers to other users, something the suit claims was performed without authorization and is a potential risk to systems on the home network.

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German Chancellor speaks out against net neutrality, wants fast lanes

12/07, 2:47pm

Believes Internet should be split into two channels to secure quality for special services

While members of the European Union and the US fight net neutrality and Internet traffic equality battles, German Chancellor Angela Merkel waded in during a conference in Berlin to explain her outlook for the Internet. Instead of looking towards maintaining a neutral playing field for all, Merkel says that the Internet should be split into two tiers to accommodate special services.

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Opponents of Comcast, Time Warner Cable merger form Stop Mega Comcast

12/03, 9:14pm

Group including Dish, Writers Guild of America and more urge DOJ, FCC to reject merger

A new opposition group emerged today to declare war on the proposed Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger, stressing the negative effects such a deal would present to cable and Internet markets, competition and consumers. The Stop Mega Comcast Coalition proposes in a manifesto that the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) reject the merger.

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Briefly: Google Fiber Austin sign-ups begin, NORAD Santa Tracker

12/02, 6:49am

Google accepts sign-ups for Fiber service in Austin

Google has started to accept sign-ups for the Google Fiber "fiberhoods" in Austin. Starting with areas in the south and south-east of the city, residential customers can sign up for plans offering Gigabit Internet and TV services for $130 per month, Gigabit Internet alone for $70 per month, or a 5Mbps connection for no monthly charge but a $300 construction fee, with a business plan providing Gigabit Internet for $100 per month. Other parts of the city will be brought into the Google Fiber sign-up process in the future.

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UK government wants IP addresses logged for counter-terrorism purposes

11/24, 6:08am

Proposed security bill will force Internet providers to log IP address allocations for one year

The UK government is proposing a law which would require Internet service providers (ISPs) to keep records of IP address allocations and provide them to the police. Part of the "Counter-Terrorism and Security Bill," the measure is said to help law enforcement officials identify and track devices used for online crime, terrorism, and to help protect vulnerable people.

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LinkNYC proposes free gigabit Wi-Fi across New York City using kiosks

11/18, 7:28am

Advertising-covered LinkNYC kiosks could replace phone booths across city

Citizens of New York City will soon gain access to a city-wide Wi-Fi network, expanding its existing installations considerably while staying free for all to use. The LinkNYC project, which plans to provide gigabit connections to all five boroughs from the end of next year, will consist of up to 10,000 kiosks designed to replace the aging public phone system.

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Opinion: Senator Ted Cruz off the mark with net neutrality comments

11/17, 9:05am

Cruz doesn't think government should pick 'winners and losers' from the 'big boys'

After President Barack Obama urged the Federal Communications Committee (FCC) to consider Title II regulation of Internet service providers in order to treat them like a utility, numerous individuals and companies spoke in opposition. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) was one such politician, equating net neutrality to "Obamacare" for the Internet. Though Cruz explained his reasoning during a talk in Austin, Texas late last week, his "don't mess with the Internet" sound bite seems confused. Does his stance on the way the Internet should be treated add up?

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Comcast CEO says Time Warner Cable merger going 'full steam ahead'

11/13, 4:06pm

Roberts believes merger on track for completion in March, working on net neutrality

The merger between Comcast and Time Warner Cable is moving along, according to recent statements from Comcast CEO Brian Roberts. Roberts said that his company is moving "full steam ahead" with the $45 billion deal to acquire Time Warner Cable, an acquisition that would bring an additional 11 million customers to Comcast's Internet and television services.

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President Obama voices support for Title II reclassification of ISPs

11/10, 12:49pm

FCC should create net neutrality-protecting rules, insists Obama

President Barack Obama has voiced his support for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to reclassify Internet services under Title II of the Telecommunications act. Wading into the net neutrality debate again, Obama has issued a statement asking for the FCC to "answer the call of almost 4 million public comments, and implement the strongest possible rules to protect net neutrality."

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Hungarian prime minister backs down from Internet tax proposals

10/31, 8:09am

Protests, widespread criticism forces Internet tax reversal in Hungary

A proposed tax on Internet data transfers in Hungary has been quashed, following a vast amount of criticism and protests in the country. Prime Minister Viktor Orban has backed down from the plans, which would require companies to pay 150 forints ($0.60) per gigabyte of Internet traffic, in order to help close the national budget deficit.

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Hungarian government proposes data transfer tax for Internet providers

10/23, 1:18pm

Proposed Internet tax could help Hungary with national budget deficit

Internet providers in Hungary may find their costs will increase, as the government mulls a possible tax on Internet traffic. A draft tax bill for 2015 has been submitted to the country's parliament, one which would require companies to pay for data transfers, as the country attempts to deal with a national budget deficit in alternative ways.

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City council votes against license transfer from Charter to Comcast

10/17, 7:32am

Worcester, MA city council advises city manager not to allow Comcast transfer

A city council has declared it does not want Comcast to provide service to its residents. The council of Worcester, MA has voted against the transfer of the city's cable license from Charter to Comcast over the cable giant's "substandard consumer service practices," as well as believing it lacks the management experience to maintain the service for the region.

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Google Fiber launching in Austin in December following delays

10/16, 6:05am

Fiberhood sign-up system will be reused for deciding Austin construction priority

Residents of Austin won't have much longer to wait before they can start using Google Fiber. The search company revealed in a recent planning meeting at the Texas capitol that it would start to launch its delayed fiber network in the region from December, though not all areas will gain access to the high-speed Internet connection at first.

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President Obama still 'unequivocally committed to net neutrality'

10/12, 2:18pm

Administration has made it clear to FCC that rules don't create tiered Internet

During a question-and-answer session at Cross Campus in Santa Monica last week, US President Barack Obama reaffirmed his stance on net neutrality, which he has held since first running for office. Holding that the concept of an open Internet is important to innovation, the President said that he expects that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will not end up creating a tiered Internet.

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FTC head speaks out against proposed FCC Title II regulation of ISPs

09/30, 12:56pm

Dueling regulatory boards fight over future of ISP regulation

Allegedly concerned about protecting the American consumer, US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) head Maureen Ohlhausen has come out as strongly against Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler's net neutrality provision -- specifically, the possibility of Title II regulation of ISPs. The comment against the possibility of regulating Internet providers as a utility is the FTC's second in September.

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Virgin Atlantic to offer Gogo in-flight Wi-Fi on entire plane fleet

09/19, 7:51am

Gogo 2Ku satellite Internet could provide Virgin passengers with shared 70Mbps connection

In-flight Wi-Fi provider Gogo is expanding to Europe, with Virgin Atlantic set to become the first airline operating in the region to offer the service to passengers. The airline will reportedly retrofit its entire fleet to work with the Internet service as part of the deal, and while the two sides are still discussing the finer points of the agreement, the principal terms have already been settled.

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Texas court finds CBS infringes upon Personal Audio LLC's patent

09/16, 7:35pm

Jury awards Personal Audio $1.3 million, less than the $7.8 million sought

Podcasters may not be in the clear of potential patent violations after a ruling this week in a Texas court. Six jurors found that CBS Corporation, home of the television network with shows like The Big Bang Theory and Person of Interest, infringed upon the patent by streaming episodic content of its television shows on the Internet. The trial only lasted four days, with CBS failing to prove the patent owned by Personal Audio LLC should be invalidated.

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Senate Judiciary Committee readying hearing on net neutrality

09/09, 7:55pm

Senator pushes for more citizen input days after FCC commenting period closes

There is still some fighting left to do for the United States Senate when it comes to net neutrality, as Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) announced that there would be hearing in the near future. The senator, who is also the chairman for the Senate Judiciary Committee, is calling the hearing for September 17 in order to take testimony on the importance of keeping the Internet free and open.

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House Minority Leader Pelosi calls for Title II regulation of ISPs

09/09, 7:53am

Minority leader concerned with both FCC behavior, ISP policies

House Minority Leader (D-CA) Nancy Pelosi has called for broadband to be reclassified as a public utility under Title II legislation. Instead of railing against the Internet Service Providers themselves, Pelosi wants the reclassification, as she is concerned that upcoming Federal Communication Commission (FCC) rulings will result in discrimination against consumers and innovators relying on an unfettered Internet to survive.

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AT&T complains about unfairness of municipal broadband to FCC

09/02, 4:22pm

Letter to FCC alleges that government owned networks hold undue power

Given the opportunity to petition against the expansion of municipal broadband expansion in Chattanooga, Tennessee and Wilson, North Carolina, AT&T has taken the opportunity to remind the government of its role in the state of Internet connectivity in the US. In its filing with the US Federal Communcations Commission, the telecom giant lays out its case against why local broadband, or "Government-Owned Networks" (GON), shouldn't be allowed.

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Multi-hour TWC Internet outage caused through network maintenance

08/27, 12:29pm

Time Warner Cable blames issue during scheduled maintenance for Internet failure

Time Warner Cable's nationwide outage of its Internet and phone service earlier today was caused by a problem during routine maintenance, the company claims. The multi-hour fault, which affected a large proportion of its 15 million subscribers including 11.4 million Internet customers, has been rectified for the majority of affected subscribers.

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AT&T bringing gigabit Internet to Silicon Valley with Cupertino push

08/20, 2:14pm

Gigabit Internet will become available in Cupertino

AT&T has become the first major telecommunications provider to declare it will offer a gigabit Internet service in Silicon Valley in the future. The high-speed service will roll out in Cupertino, Apple's base of operations, though the company has not yet revealed when it will roll out the network in the area, when it will be available to customers, nor how much it will ultimately cost.

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Router, switch memory limits responsible for recent Internet outages

08/13, 8:42pm

BGP tables hitting 512K limit, could mean more outages as capped machines surface

Since yesterday, the Internet has hit some bouts of turbulence as a widespread issue slowly works its way across infrastructure. The issues aren't tied to any sort of fiber issues or due to the exhaustion of iPv4 address, but rather the exhaustion of memory inside of some hardware such as routers and switches. Starting on Tuesday, border gateway protocol (BGP) tables, the tables responsible for keeping track of a map of the Internet, started to hit their limit in older hardware, making chunks of the Internet inaccessible in the process.

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Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issues virtual currency warning

08/11, 6:39pm

Reminds consumers Internet currency is a target for hackers, comes with additional cost

The US Federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued a warning on virtual currencies like Bitcoin and Dogecoin on its website today. In the warning, the CFPB sounds off some well-known issues that generally circle around Internet currencies, such as the risk of hacking, fraud and lack of regulation in holding houses.

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Google backs $300m undersea Internet cable between US, Japan

08/11, 4:09pm

Extra undersea cable to provide 60Tbps of Trans-Pacific bandwidth

Google has backed a project to install a Trans-Pacific cable system between major West Coast cities in the United States with two locations in Japan. The $300 million project, optimistically called the Faster cable network, will hopefully provide a speed boost for Internet connections, with construction starting now with a view to being "ready for service" by mid-2016.

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Microsoft dumping support for old Internet Explorer versions in 2016

08/11, 1:43pm

Most recent version of Internet Explorer required for updates, support for IE8 dropped

Microsoft announced last week that it would be changing its support policy in regard to Internet Explorer. Outlined in the change is migration guidance for versions of Windows past XP, which excludes any further support for Internet Explorer 8. The software giant is urging users to enable Windows Updates to keep up with the most recent updates to Internet Explorer.

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Russian hackers collect more than 1.2 billion unique credentials

08/08, 12:00am

Nearly 4.5 billion records in total collected, 542 million unique emails addresses

The New York Times reported earlier this week that a hacker group has collected 1.2 billion unique username and password credentials from 420,000 websites. The records, which were verified by a security firm, is thought to be one of the largest collections of Internet identity information reported. The publication had the data analyzed by another expert, who verified the authenticity of the collection but has not commented on the validity of the data.

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Comcast offers six months of free Internet Essentials, bill amnesty

08/05, 7:18am

New measures attempt to make Comcast Internet Essentials cheaper for low-income families

Comcast is attempting to make it easier for low-income families to have Internet access, by lowering the cost even further. The telecommunications giant will be providing its Internet Essentials tier free for up to six months to new eligible users, while qualifying families unable to take part due to existing debts to the company will be able to benefit from an amnesty program.

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Review: Simple.tv

08/04, 10:00pm

Home server replacement captures antenna, cable channels for viewing on most devices

For consumers trying to cut the cord and rely solely on the Internet for television entertainment, there are still some issues. Mainly, the problem is that local channels aren't accessible through existing streaming methods, outside of the some clips or news shorts from a website. Are there other options out there for people that still want to see their local news or sporting events without maintaining a cable subscription? Yes, thanks to Simple.tv. But does the device work in a manner that is consumer-friendly, or does it cause more problems than its worth? Find out in our review.

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FCC looks into six more content providers, ISPs in peering probe

08/03, 3:51pm

Agency asks for interconnection agreements for understanding, regulation depends on discovery

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is looking into six additional Internet service providers (ISP) and content providers over interconnecting and peering agreements, according to reports. An official spoke to Ars Technica after it filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request seeking information on the Netflix peering deals with Verizon and Comcast. The news comes after FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler announced in June that the agency would be investigating such agreements.

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Time Warner Cable rolls out TWC Maxx in Austin, future cities named

08/01, 12:13pm

Austin TWC Maxx upgrade includes connection speed increases, improved TV service

Time Warner Cable is expanding the TWC Maxx initiative it launched earlier this year in Los Angeles and New York City, by upgrading its network in Austin, Texas, along with seven other markets at a later time. Subscriber speed increases for its Internet service are touted, for both consumer and business customers, alongside an expansion of the TWC Wi-Fi network into the greater Austin area, and a new "all-digital" TV line-up.

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Internet.org app reveals app for Zambia providing free online services

07/31, 10:09am

Free access to search, essential online services provided by Internet.org app

The Facebook-spearheaded Internet.org initiative is making progress in providing low-cost or free Internet access in developing countries, by launching a smartphone app. Initially available to Airtel subscribers in Zambia, the Internet.org app will provide basic access to a number of essential online services, with customers not being charged for the use of data at all.

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Mayor promises 5G mobile network across London by 2020

07/28, 6:19am

Connectivity map, high-speed mobile network in development for UK capital

London will be one of the first major cities in the world to be covered by a 5G mobile Internet service, the city's mayor has pledged, among other connectivity claims. Mayor Boris Johnson revealed the city is working with the University of Surrey to develop part of the capital's long-term infrastructure investment plan, which should lead to the 5G mobile network being deployed by 2020.

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FCC reminds broadband providers that they can't lie to customers

07/23, 4:40pm

Notice on Open Internet Transparency Rule tells ISPs to give accurate service information

In a public notice to Internet service providers, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) reminded business that they cannot lie to consumers about the services they offer. The notice informs business and the general public that "every provider of broadband Internet access in the United States" is subject to the Open Internet Transparency Rule.

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Verizon FiOS receives upstream bandwidth boost matching download speed

07/21, 9:58am

Free upload speed upgrades on Verizon FiOS over next few months

Verizon is updating its bandwidth tiers for FiOS, by giving customers higher uploading speeds. Starting from today onward for new and existing Verizon FiOS residential customers, the Internet provider will be upgrading lines at no extra charge, with subscribers being able to upload data at approximately the same speed as they are paying to download content.

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Level 3 blames Verizon for Netflix stream congestion, offers to help

07/18, 10:44am

Verizon congestion fix claimed to be cheap, simple, completed in five minutes

The ongoing feud between Netflix and Verizon has stepped up, with a transit provider weighing in over Verizon's connection congestion claims. Level 3 claims the high utilization of the connection between Verizon and itself is Verizon's fault, as the Internet service provider is actively refusing to upgrade its connections at the point of the apparent congestion.

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Google received over 70,000 'right to be forgotten' requests so far

07/11, 8:14am

Google legal chief outlines removal request difficulties following EU court ruling

Google is still being swamped with requests to remove website listings in Europe, following the Court of Justice of the European Union's ruling on the "right to be forgotten." Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer David Drummond claims the search company has received more than 70,000 takedown requests since the ruling in May, with the requests covering 250,000 webpage listings in its search results.

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Verizon claims Netflix connections cause stream bottlenecks

07/11, 5:03am

Claims majority of Verizon network is stable, Netflix connections as weak point

The battle between Verizon and Netflix over connectivity continues, with Verizon completely refusing to accept any of the blame for slow streams. The latest feud installment involves a Verizon blog post claiming its network operations team found no congestion on the Verizon network in a recent review, laying the blame squarely at Netflix's connection decisions instead of with itself.

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Google notifies YouTube users of possible Internet provider congestion

07/07, 8:24am

Blue warning notices appear under buffering YouTube videos, linking to a quality report

Google is taking a leaf out of Netflix's playbook, by hinting to YouTube users that their Internet service provider (ISP) is slow or poor. A new blue banner stating "Experiencing interruptions?" has started to appear underneath YouTube clips when users experience buffering or poor quality video, along with a link to the search company's YouTube Quality Report.

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Facebook emotional paper researcher explains study importance

07/01, 6:58pm

Coauthor says benefits of research may not have been worth the backlash

Adam Kramer, co-author of the paper involving Facebook news feed manipulation, took to the social media service to explain the importance of the study earlier this week. Since news of the psychological study hit the Internet, many have wondered about the ethical implications of emotional manipulation by the company. Kramer indicated that the researchers didn't clearly state their motivations in the paper, leading to a misinterpretation of how the study was perceived.

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Google starts removing 'Right to be Forgotten' requests from search

06/26, 9:13am

European search results for names carry warnings of possible removed listings

Google has started to remove search results in Europe, in accordance with a recent ruling over the "Right to be Forgotten". After receiving requests from Internet users wanting links to be removed from search listings, Google is not only leaving out the URL, but also warning users their search results may have been adjusted to conform to the Court of Justice of the European Union's ruling.

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Democrats propose bill banning Internet 'fast lane' deals

06/17, 12:08pm

Deal covers consumer speeds, not peering deals between companies

Some Democratic senators are looking at a ban on the US Federal Communication Commission (FCC) proposal to allow Internet "fast lanes." Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Doris Matsui (D-CA) have proposed a bill that codifies the FCC's existing authority to ensure that Internet Service Providers don't allow some content providers faster access at the expense of other services.

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CEA study says Internet TV viewers will eclipse antenna only viewers

06/15, 4:55pm

Internet only viewing U.S. households expected to surpass antenna only next year

A study from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) finds that the number of Internet-only viewers of television programming will soon number higher than antenna-only viewers. Television viewers in the United States have been embracing Internet viewing habits at a rapid pace, with a climbing number of households watching exclusively on wireless devices. While device saturation for Internet viewing has increased, the television still remains the most watched device in the US.

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Netflix attacks Verizon shifting blame over ISP congestion warnings

06/12, 4:09pm

General counsel for Netflix sets congestion blame squarely with Verizon

The war of words between Netflix and Verizon over Internet service provider (ISP) performance issues is continuing, a new leaked letter reveals. A response from Netflix General Counsel David Hyman to his counterpart at Verizon firmly pins the connection blame on the ISP, after receiving a cease and desist letter over Netflix's congestion warning messages.

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Comcast turns customer routers in Houston into public Wi-Fi hotspots

06/11, 1:53pm

Secondary SSID will be enabled on 150,000 Comcast routers by end of June

Comcast subscribers in Houston will soon see a new secondary SSID broadcasting from their routers, as the company prepares to create more Wi-Fi hotspots. Approximately 50,000 Comcast routers in the area will begin to offer free "xfinitywifi" hotspot access to other Comcast subscribers, a move the company has previously tested and launched in other areas, despite the controversial nature of the program.

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Evernote, Feedly servers affected, hit with denial of service attacks

06/11, 7:24am

Evernote recovers from multi-hour DDoS attack, Feedly continues to suffer

Two prominent web properties have come under fire from distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks in the last 24 hours. Note-taking app Evernote struggled to stay active during its multi-hour attack earlier today, with Google Reader replacement Feedly being the current target, with the entire service currently unavailable while it attempts to mitigate the malicious traffic surge.

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Amtrak plans 25Mbps Wi-Fi test on Northeast Corridor trains

06/10, 7:05am

Bids requested by Amtrack to test Wi-Fi improvement feasibility

Amtrak is looking to increase the on-board Wi-Fi service on some of its trains running on the east coast of the United States. The company is soliciting bids for a "proof-of-concept" project for bolstering its Wi-Fi service, with the ultimate aim of providing a "high-capacity, broadband-speed Internet connection" for trains running between Washington and Boston.

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Netflix Verizon congestion message was a 'small scale test'

06/09, 4:54pm

Verizon drops places in latest Netflix speed rankings

Netflix will soon stop its customized error message warning of issues with specific Internet service providers (ISP), the video streaming company has advised. At the same time as releasing ISP speed results for May, Netflix states it will stop the customized notifications when its "small scale test" concludes on June 16th, before deciding whether or not it will extend the practice to other markets and ISPs.

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