IBM returns to broadband over power line market

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IBM returns to broadband over power line market

IBM is once again planning to set up a broadband over power line (BPL) system in the US.

The company said that it would install a BPL system which will serve several ISPs in the eastern part of the US. Once installed, the networks will be administrated by telecoms firm IBEC.

BPL systems use standard power lines to transmit data to and from computers. The system has been in existence for several years, but has not seen widespread uptake due to lingering electronic interference issues and tepid interest from power companies to enter the ISP business.

IBM was among those who had pressed for similar systems in the past. The company helped set up a BPL network in the city of Houston in 2005.

The new network will be targeted primarily at rural areas in the US where the sparse population has prevented other ISPs from laying down lines for cable and DSL services. In doing so, the companies hope finally to find a market in which BPL can gain a foothold.

"High-speed internet service is revolutionising the way we do business, and access to this resource will generate great opportunities for rural America," predicted IBM advanced networks director Raymond Blair.
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