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A better approach might be a government managed last mile (i.e. cable from a central data center to your home/business), but not the ISP itself.

That way ISPs can continue to compete for your business, but the market would be significantly less restrictive because the ISP only needs physical equipment at the data center and upstream of it.

The biggest thing stopping ISP competition today is that local markets don't want the road dug up ten times to lay different cables. So instead lay them a single time, and re-sell access.

The ISPs would pay a fee to use the government cables from the data center to the end user (and equipment). That fee would be used to expand and maintain the network.

Other countries have done this with huge success. It wouldn't even put ISPs out of business, they can use this network just like their competitors.

New Zealand does this. It works well. There is plenty of ISP competition - I can choose between at least 20 providers, probably a lot more.

Edit: A colleague just mentioned to me that New Zealand doesn't have net neutrality and doesn't need it for this very reason.

I tried reading this in Wiki and it wasn't very clear. Are the last mile fibre? Do government owns it or are they like infrastructure owned by companies like electricity and water where there are requirement for them to open up? Do ISP only manage the fibre connection from Node / Curb? Who owns this Node / Curb?

Are there any single major companies that owns the backbone? And Submarine cables?

Most of the last mile is copper, because population density is thin. But in the cities fibre is being rolled out (goal is 87% by 2022).

Crown Fibre Holdings owns the new fibre network (I think Chorus owns all the copper, not sure) but Chorus manages most of it (by contract); Chorus is a crown partner company, and they are regulated and forbidden from certain activities - they were split off from Telecom, a private company.

I don't know enough about the backbone to usefully comment, except that there are at least 3 fibre networks running along the major road I live near.

For a long time there was only one submarine cable with any serious bandwidth (Southern Cross Cable), but aparently according to Wikipedia a new one to AUS was rolled out in March 2017 and another one to Hawaii this month.

Seems the logical way to go, but Provo, UT tried that and it became so politically toxic that the city wound up giving the network away to Google and swallowing the debt.

If you look at EPB being forced to pull out of neighboring areas and the actions of other states to prevent muni / utility Internet projects, it's pretty clear that America doesn't want to solve the last mile problem unless it involves preserving the incumbent's market position.

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