BPL, which was developed more than 10 years ago, has been criticized for its slow start, which was precipitated by interference problems in the original implementations. But the newer generation of equipment is much better at filtering out interference, and future generations will provide speeds greater than 100 Mbps. The technology also has received a big boost from major investors, including Cisco, EarthLink, Goldman Sachs, Google and IBM.
If your organization has offices in rural areas that have been overlooked by DSL and cable access providers, take a closer look at BPL. As service providers roll it out gradually in less populous areas across the country, it could become a major means of access for telecommuters, consumers and small businesses. --Peter Morrissey