- AT&T’s announcement of Project AirGig in 2016 was a compelling and novel way to think about providing high-speed broadband services.
- Following a press conference and tease of a 2021 release in 2018, AT&T has gone silent on the project, prompting questions about its future.
During the mid-2000’s, broadband over power line (BPL) technology (using power lines to simultaneously transmit data signals) was an exciting topic in the telecommunications industry. The hope was the technology could deliver speeds equivalent or greater than ADSL and provide a cheap and effective means of connecting rural communities and improving broadband infrastructure in brownfield areas without the need to lay new fiber. The IEEE developed standards, and various governments, carriers, and even utilities launched trials and services. While the technology caught on for some utilities as a means to monitor the health of their own grids, most if not all commercial attempts to develop a consumer access product failed. Failures were blamed on a few factors, including radio interference easily impacting unshielded power lines, complications managing right-of-way access with utilities, and slower than predicted data rates. Today, BPL for consumer access is all but dead; however, at the end of 2016, AT&T announced a new project, ‘AirGig,’ with a lot of similarities. Continue reading “Whatever Happened to AT&T’s AirGig?”