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Power lines to carry broadband to hinterlands


Rural Americans will soon have access to the advantages of the Internet thanks to a $9.6 million project to bring broadband over electric lines. IBM and International Broadband Electric Communications, Inc. will install Broadband over Power Line networks at electric cooperatives throughout the eastern U.S.

The U.S. has more than 900 electric cooperatives that provide 45 percent of the total electric grid and cover 75 percent of the country’s land mass.

“Americans in rural areas of the country trail their urban and suburban counterparts in broadband availability,” noted Scott Lee, CEO of International Broadband Electric Communications. “This capability will play a critical role in rural health, education, and economic development, while closing the digital divide that exists between well served and underserved America.”

“High-speed Internet service is revolutionizing the way we do business, and access to this resource will generate great opportunities for rural America,” said Raymond Blair, Director of Advanced Networks at IBM.

The new service will also improve how electric utilities monitor, manage, and control the reliability of their electric grids.


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