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Japanese push fiber over profit

New York Times

NYT2007Broadband

TOKYO — The United States may be the world’s largest economy, but when it comes to Internet connections at home, many Americans still live in the slow lane. By contrast, Japan is a broadband paradise with the fastest and cheapest Internet connections in the world.

Nearly eight million Japanese have a fiber optic line at home that is as much as 30 times speedier than a typical DSL line.

But while that speed is a boon for Japanese users, industry analysts and some companies question whether the push to install fiber is worth the effort, given the high cost of installation, affordable alternatives and lack of services that take advantage of the fast connections.

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