There are a growing number of companies offering gigabit internet speeds, but typically that requires running new cables to a customer’s home. Last year AT&T unveiled a different idea: piggyback on existing power lines that already crisscross the country.

AT&T’s Airgig is actually a wireless technology. But instead of building new cell towers, it puts transmitters on power lines to make super-fast wireless internet available wherever you find power lines.

Now AT&T has announced that it has launched two trials of the technology.

One is running in partnership with Georgia Power in rural parts of Georgia as part of an effort to see how well the technology can offer broadband internet in areas where it’s not currently available.

The other trial is described as an international one “with an electricity provider outside the US.”

It’s unclear if or when AT&T plans to roll out Airgig technology more widely, but if the trials go well, we could eventually see this emerge as an alternative to fiber for delivering Gigabit internet speeds.

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11 replies on “AT&T begins Airgig trials: Gigabit wireless internet wherever power lines are available”

  1. Good chance this will wipe out any legitimate use of the LF through HF communications bands wherever it is installed. Yes, that is highly illegal. But that doesn’t matter any more these days. Corrupt Lobbyists and Trial Lawyers will protect AT&T and the Power Utility. Even if it does get to court, Judge shopping will let them off.

  2. i pay $70 a month of fairly stable 5mbs speed. yeah, I like near power lines, who doesn’t?? Bring it on ATT

    1. I assume “near powerlines” means they cannot service areas with underground utilities.

  3. In Phoenix AZ the power company SRP buried fiber beneath the power lines, as that space has to be vacant by law. I believe 90% of the regional population is within 3 miles of dark fiber.
    https://www.srptelecom.com
    The problem with internet in the US is not missing or poor infrastructure, it’s corruption on an amazing scale.

    1. Even if broadband speeds hit 1Gbps, the telcos can throttle any traffic they want. We need municipal fiber broadband with no telcos. That will solve net neutrality right there. City and state laws forbid this, and this is the corruption that I am talking about.

  4. I really hope this is successful. We desperately need more choices to get internet access in many areas. In my area, you only have 2 choices, and only one of them is decent.

    1. Then you are doing better than most. We have two high speed service providers and they are both [email protected]#$. For me to get excited about this it would have to be coming from a new company instead of the likes of AT&T or Comcast.

      1. AT&T isn’t one of my favorite companies either. AT&T and Charter/Spectrum are my only options, and I consider Charter/Spectrum to be the only decent choice. However, if AT&T can do this wireless power line thing, so can T-Mobile, Sprint, etc. Really anyone with the money for the roll out can do it. It opens the door for other providers without having to lay down cable.

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