Internet over power lines a reality

Manassas, Va. celebrates availability of power-line Internet, as experimental technology goes mainstream.
Written by ZDNet UK, Contributor on

One of the more promising technologies for delivering Internet everywhere is to use power lines as a transport medium. The experimental technology took a big step forward as Communication Technologies announced it has completed citywide installation of the service the city of Manassas, Va., with more than 12,000 households.

The Washinton Post reports:

"This is an achievement of a major national milestone," said Joseph E. Fergus, founder and chief executive of Communication Technologies, or Comtek. ... He said the technology "will be deployed within two years to scores of communities across the U.S."


A competitor, Current, which has financial backing from Google, has rolled out broadband-over-powerlines to 50,000 households in Cincinnati.

Companies such as Comtek and Current say they have a key advantage over the competition because they tap into an infrastructure that already exists. They partner with power companies to tap the electric grid and the network of power lines that already run into the home, so communities can hook up to another source of the Internet without having to dig up trenches to lay new cables in the streets.


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