There are many reports of copper theft, but this time it is the RBOCs doing the stealing. In the wake of the Storm Sandy in the Northeast, VZ has decided to clip most of the copper in the central office in NYC Battery Park area due to damage from flooding. Replacement will be all optical, thus clipping the wings of CLEC's - and their customers in that serving area.
Since 9/11, have the carriers done anything to ensure sustained communications during a disaster? It doesn't look like it. That was 11 years ago - add in the lessons from Katrina in 2005 (7 years ago) - and then find out that VZW ignored FCC preparation guidance and you have to wonder what it will take before either Congress or the FCC grow a pair. [more here]
There isn't any competition left - the Duopoly is actually co-marketing each other's services!
The end of the PSTN is coming - faster than you think! With the copper clipping, the only competition will be from facilities-based carriers (fiber and fixed wireless). ADTRAN and Overture are in for trouble, since EoC depends on copper plant!
This is one big reason the CLECs - like EarthLink and Cbeyond - have turned to cloud and IT services in such a heavy way. They need to get away from low-margin Type II services that may dry up. DSL and T1 are going the way of the dinosaur (or POTS).
I hear all of this talk about SLA's surrounding cloud services and I have to laugh. SLA's - service level agreements) are not worth the time it takes to negotiate. The service is either delivered or not. The credits back on an SLA are ridiculously small compared to the customer pain. In cloud, it will be worse. If the company doesn't meet an SLA, no one is working. Remember that quite a few of these cloud services are delivered by companies that can't deliver a T1 properly and have trouble finding their fiber assets! We are certainly moving into interesting times.
Reportlinker.com reports the obvious: "Executive Summary -The voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) access and session initiation protocol (SIP) trunking services market is growing rapidly as IP-based services increasingly displace traditional telecommunications services, thus creating opportunities for service providers to differentiate and grow their revenues." If only that differentiation was happening. It's not. And any hope of clear, concise messaging about the value proposition of service providers is another pipe dream.
What are you planning to do in case copper is clipped in your area?