Sonic.net eyes San Francisco as next stop for its FTTH build

Sonic.net, a competitive provider known for its low priced broadband and voice services, has set San Francisco as the next stop in its own ambitious Fiber to the Home (FTTH) buildout plan.

Making this move won't come without its challenges as seen by potential new AT&T (NYSE: T), which was ordered to halt its U-verse roll out due environmental concerns over the placement of its VRAD boxes.

Undeterred, Sonic.net filed an application with the city's Department of Public Works to begin installing 188 Remote Terminal (RT) cabinets that measure 5x4x2 feet early that would house the electronics to deliver services to homes next year.

If Sonic.net's application is approved, it would begin providing a dual-play bundle of voice and data service, with plans to roll out TV at a later date, with much higher speeds than AT&T can deliver over its hybrid fiber/copper VDSL2-based network. Similar to its other traditional DSL service packages, the FTTH bundle would be competitively priced at $39.95 a month.  

Of course, it's possible that Sonic.net's dream may face the same protest from community groups citing environmental issues that have held up AT&T from moving forward with installing 768 RT cabinets to deliver its U-verse service.

"It's an interesting twist," said Sonic.net CEO Dane Jasper in a San Francisco Chronicle article. "While the debate has centered around AT&T and its boxes, there hasn't been any discussion about what happens if someone else wants to install boxes, too."

In the meantime, Sonic.net is moving ahead with separate plans to roll out another FTTH network in Sebastopol, Calif. and it is also managing the rollout of Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG) pilot FTTH network on the Stanford University campus.

For more:
- San Francisco Chronicle has this article

Related articles:
Sonic.net to launch a 1 Gbps FTTH service
Google taps Sonic.net to operate its Stanford FTTH network
AT&T ordered to stop U-verse buildout in San Francisco
San Francisco community groups sue city over AT&T U-verse remote terminal boxes

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