Since the dawn of the internet, broadband has helped to spur innovation. The structural backbone that the internet relies on for connectivity has evolved over the years, with a growing infrastructure designed to support increasing speed and bandwidth.
Over the past 20 years, the entire broadband industry has invested $1.4 trillion toward broadband infrastructure, with investments reaching $78 billion in 2014 alone. These investments not only support broadband connectivity, they are improving local economies, employment opportunities, education health care and public safety.
And communities are harnessing the power and promise of broadband connectivity to transform data into objects that have impact in the physical world. Because of access to high-speed broadband, a Chattanooga public library patron uses the library’s 3D printer to build prosthetics for his son as he grows. Irvine California’s Flint Rehab relies on broadband for video and audio capabilities to, in essence, deliver physical therapists to patients’ homes.
The possibilities are tremendous – but continued growth and innovation requires investment. And investment requires some market certainty. Thus, it is imperative policymakers embrace light touch regulations that foster environments that invite robust investment to support next generation innovation.