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This is an interesting read, but the comparisons to other countries/regions omits any mention of population density. It's much easier to roll out public utilities in dense areas than sparsely populated ones, and western Europe and Korea are more densely populated than the US.

Not that this excuses the big drop in speeds, but it makes the comparative piece a bit less relevant/accurate.

More population density means smaller cells, more towers, more infrastructure, higher level of wired network throughput surface density required, more money.

It might be economically unfeasible to service remote areas, but covering a given area is much harder as population density increases, not less hard.

Yet other countries can do while charging the consumer less.

I agree that there are different challenges to serving high-density areas, but I don't agree that these challenges are necessarily harder than creating a far-flung network. These articles [1] [2] indicate that for wired high-speed internet, population density is a good thing for cost savings.

To the extent that high-speed wired internet is part of the infrastructure needed for high-speed cellular networks, the cost benefit would similarly favor dense populations.

Tower density would have to be higher, of course, and interference could be an issue, but I've not seen anything indicating that these challenges outweigh the cost savings from having a dense population. I'd be interested in seeing an analysis!

1: http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2014/11/30/why-cant-th...

2: http://www.cnn.com/2010/TECH/03/31/broadband.south.korea/

Wireless technology has solved this problem since you no longer have to wire up each individual home. It's probably more difficult in dense populations because you need more towers and spectrum is limited.

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