Even as we argue over how to fund more broadband in the US – particularly in rural, unserved and underserved areas – there appears to be renewed activity on the fiber network front. According to research firm TeleGeography (via GigaOM), more than 60% of US operators plan to light up more fiber in 2009, and telcos have 16 new undersea cables in the works this year for added long-haul capacity.
I remember hearing about the dangers of dark fiber and overcapacity right before the last bust in 2001. (Those were my early days of paying attention to telecom.) However, the situation appears to be different today. First, as TeleGeography points out, investment levels are still far below what they were eight years ago. And second, increasing bandwidth demands have proven the value of fiber. If you build it, the revenue will come.