Vermont Tel offers GigE for $35 per Month

  • Vermont Telephone Company
SPRINGFIELD, VT – Five hundred rural Vermont homes and farms have now been connected to the Internet at full gigabit speeds, downstream and upstream, over optical fiber, by Vermont Telephone Company (VTel).

Bob Metcalfe, inventor of Ethernet and founder of 3Com, said, "VTel is doing what Google is doing in Kansas City and Austin, but in ruralVermont – gigafication of the Internet. It's a tremendous win for rural America."

VTel is "fibering" 100 percent of its 17,500 customers, and the company's remarkable $35/month GigE price has been made possible by funding from U.S. broadband stimulus awards from Rural Utilities Service and NTIA, totaling $94 million for 1,200 miles of fiber construction and network upgrades.

VTel CEO Dr. Michel Guité noted, "Google, a great tech company, is building its Kansas City and Austin networks with technology almost identical to VTel's, enabling a full gigabit downstream and a full gigabit upstream. In VTel's fiber network, 32 Springfield homes get about 32 gigabits of bandwidth. By contrast, in Verizon's FiOS network, 32 homes share only 2.4 gigabits. VTel offers more than ten times the capacity of Verizon's FiOS, and is more than 100 times faster than most U.S. cable TV connections."

The VTel GigE network services and technology include:

  • One gigabit downstream and one gigabit upstream active Ethernet, over dedicated fiber, to every home. The network core is made by Alcatel, integrated with routers from Juniper Networks of Sunnyvale, CA, and supported by Calix Networks of Petaluma, CA. Wherever possible VTel has sought to purchase US-made technology. Almost all VTel network components have been developed in the U.S.

  • The VTel GigE backbone is powered by Alcatel with multiple 100-gigabit data cards, the fastest commercially available. VTel can deliver 100 gigabits to almost anywhere in Vermont, including to any business or home location that wants the speed, and over its four-state fiber network. This ensures that VTel can handle any conceivable peak demand, even traffic spikes such as those experienced during Hurricane Irene or 9/11.

  • VTel has its own direct 100-gigabit connections to major Internet peering points in New York City, Boston and Montreal, providing network redundancy crucial for both commercial and residential customers.

  • VTel uses Actiontec routers, which have three times the effective capacity of most gigabit routers. The Actiontec router is IPTV capable, integrating with a Mediaroom video head-end developed by Microsoft. VTel engineers discovered most standard gigabit home routers delivered much lower speeds. Despite higher router costs, VTel switched to Actiontec routers, and – consequently – VTel fiber customers are typically experiencing speeds of 925 to 950 million bits per second.

  • VTel field teams are adding more than 200 GigE homes per week, with the project on target to reach every location in the VTel service territory by mid-2014. VTel is also offering television ("VTelevision"), and high-definition voice telephone service over its new fiber network, as well as cloud storage and statewide 4G/LTE broadband wireless. The company's IPTV head-end system is being tested today for 500 channels, and VTel expects to launch IPTV services this summer. VTel will continue to offer voice with the reliability of a century old incumbent rural phone company, but with enhanced sound clarity, and improved telephone services.



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