CenturyLink Accepts Limited CAF Funding, Partners With Nirvanix

July 25th, 2012 by · 5 Comments

Two interesting releases from CenturyLink yesterday and this morning, on two different subjects: consumer access and cloud connectivity.

First, in its capacity as a local access provider, CenturyLink has agreed to accept $35M from the FCC's Connect America Fund in order to deploy broadband service to 45,000 homes in unserved rural areas. They were eligible for $90M of CAF phase 1 funding, however the company says that only this portion is economical due to restrictions on use of the funds. They have applied for a waiver for another 60,000 homes, hoping to negotiate a better deal for another slug of federal funding I guess.

And as a backbone operator, CenturyLink has partnered with Nirvanix for cloud storage. The two announced a strategic channel alliance giving CenturyLink customers access to Nirvanix's cloud storage services at higher speeds and lower bandwidth costs. Interesting that their own cloud division, Savvis, wasn't mentioned in connection to this relationship.  Storage isn't one of Savvis's primary focuses, but I wonder why there wasn't tighter integration there.

For its part, Savvis won an interesting outsourcing deal with Posadas, a Mexican hotel operator. Posadis is migrating its IT to Savvis's Dallas facility, leveraging a combination of private cloud, hosting, storage, and security.  Posadas had some help from Burstorm, which aids companies transitioning to a cloud-based infrastructure.

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5 Comments So Far


  • quick questions says:

    1) is this funding available to all companies providing service to “unserved rural areas”?
    2) is there a specific definition of “unserved rural areas”?
    3) how large is the fund?

  • Peter Pratt says:

    The funding that CenturyLink announced yesterday it is accepting is from the FCC’s new Connect America Fund (CAF) Phase I funding program.

    CAF Phase I, funded at a total of $300 million, is only open to the 13 price cap carriers that are registered for Universal Service Fund (USF) subsidies in their respective states and territories. CAF is the new federal subsidy program replacing USF.

    Under CAF Phase II, an estimated minimum of $2 billion a year in operating subsidies will be made available to any carrier that is certificated by the applicable state PUC, and which wins the FCC’s reverse auction for funding in specific unserved area footprints.

    Yes, the required delivery speed for CAF funding winners is 4down/1up. The working definition of an unserved area largely turns on that required speed.

    This is however a federal program fought over by the largest players in our industry. It gets way more complicated, with present fights over how existing service is recognized.

  • mhammett says:

    We’re doing our best to reduce the impact of CAF and USF!

  • Jim says:

    Is all this federal funding being used for executive bonus
    Billions of TAX dollars have be given to communication companies to deliver the public with high speed internet
    and 2 miles out of Oconto Wi we get 1.3 on a good day.
    And Century Link do not offer an E-mail address to contact them for updates.
    If our tax dollars are paying for this why can they charge so much for the service ??

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