The United States is a country that prides itself on being at the forefront of technology, yet their internet speeds contradict these claims. According to the 2015 Akamai State of the Internet Connectivity Report, the United States average internet speed barely cracked the top 20 fastest countries in the world. It is hard to fathom that American internet capabilities have fallen behind countries like Latvia and Estonia, but that is reality of the situation.
So why is America ranked so poorly when it comes to average internet speed? Ultimately this mediocre internet does not stem from a lack of technological knowhow or capability, but from a lack of competition. It is certainly not groundbreaking news that the internet options in America are few and far between. The cable provider industry has become increasingly monopolized over the last decade. With hardly any competition for companies like AT&T, they have very little incentive when it comes to improving the quality of their product.
That is why the news that Google Fiber has been granted permission to deploy high speed internet in Nashville is fantastic for the American internet consumer. While Nashville was once the joint property of Comcast and AT&T, the city is now becoming a veritable internet turf war. On September 20th both major cable providers attempted and failed to defer the bill. Undeterred, AT&T has filed a lawsuit against the Nashville Metro Council. It is obvious from their actions just how important it is for these companies to stifle their competition.
Yet the introduction of another major player in the internet game will only serve to help raise American internet speeds as a whole. As a small business owner this is sure to be a positive result. Faster and potentially cheaper internet costs would be a major benefit for any business. If the possibility of adding internet provider competition is an option in your town, go out and make your voice heard in support. This is something that will benefit small businesses throughout the country.