Say Goodbye to traditional copper. Hellooo Fiber!

With everyone uploading and downloading, posting to their favorite social media sites and streaming their favorite shows, it’s become so hard to imagine a life without Internet.

But for many, that’s is still the reality. Nationally, up to 40 percent of households do not have an Internet connection. Today, most homes still utilize copper wiring which plays a major part in Internet speeds.

When Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone over 100 years, the dominant way to wire a home was with the use of copper wiring. At the time, copper wiring was perfect for voice signals, which it was designed for. But as society advanced and technology evolved, copper didn’t really keep up. Now, new technology requires devices to last longer, without losing service.

As copper comes to the end of its lifespan, fiber optics will pick up where it left off.

That’s where Race comes in. Our fiber optic products offer symmetrical speeds as much as 1000 times faster than local cable providers. At Race, we depend on fiber optics’ reliability to keep you connected.

Fiber optics is a flexible, transparent glass wiring almost slightly thicker than the human hair that is designed to for a faster transmission. Although fiber optic isn’t a new technology (it’s been around since the 1980s), using fiber optic wiring for telecommunications didn’t really take off until the 1990s. Unlike copper, fiber uses light to transmit data.

But fibers optics wasn’t always the “go-to” wiring for connecting devices. Due to expensive pricing, copper was always the first choice. As fiber optics pricing drops and starts to match copper, it has become accessible to everyone and some experts believe fiber optics will be around for the next 50-80 years.

So what are some of the core difference between copper and fiber?

-Copper is mainly designed for voice signal connections, making it very limited and slower for bandwidth.

-Traditional copper cable wiring uses underground network cables to transmit to the subscriber’s homes. Making it harder to change to replace the lines when they’ve aged. (We’ve seen this problem time and time again)

-Installing copper wire is a trickier process than installing fiber.

-Fiber almost travels at the speed of light! That’s pretty quick and one of the main advantages

-It’s hard to believe, but fiber optics are actually more resistance and durable although they’re made from glass. Copper is a conduct and when it gets wet, that leads to more deterioration of the wiring.

-Also, upgrading fiber for both the provider and homeowner is an easier process to replace versus replacing copper.

Today’s applications demand faster speeds and fiber is a great option. With providers such as Race, fiber-to-the-home is becoming a reality in communities across California, bridging the Digital Divide.

Getting Smart: Know Your Facts About IFAN 

High-speed Internet is essential for quality of life. With job applications, health services and homework assignments living in the Digital Space, there are many households still in the dark. In California alone, 16 percent of the state’s population do not have high-speed Internet at home and 30 percent do not have broadband and a computing device.

Broadband Internet allows users to access the Internet-related services at significantly higher speeds than traditional dial-up modem connections.

Back in 2008, The California Advance Services Fund (CASF) was created to close the Digital Divide to provide grants and loans for the deployment of broadband infrastructure in unserved and underserved areas by collecting a few cents per month on phone bills to authorize and fund new projects.

But with funding running out, the CASF can be renewed again in 2017, expiring in 2023 pending authorization from the California Legislature. The Internet for All Now (IFAN) bill was introduced by Assembly Member Eduardo Garcia.

Since 2009, Race Communications has dedicated extensive resources to building and providing fiber-based Internet services to nearly 12,000 homes in unserved and underserved communities throughout California starting with the Mojave Air & Spaceport, which is now one of the largest private space research and development centers in California.

In Stallion Springs alone, Race Communications has made their much-needed services available to over 1,200 homes and plans to deliver service to another 2,400 homes in Bear Valley Springs, a nearby gated community.

Today, Race is the largest recipient of the CASF fund with 22 projects stretching the Eastern Sierras North to the Nevada border. (Please see map for related projects). Without CASF and “middle-mile,” which are providers that link a core network to a local plant, projects such as Digital 395, communities like Stallion Springs, Bear Valley Springs and Boron would not be able to get fiber connectivity, thus improving day-to-day life and boosting local economies.

For companies such as Race, funding like CASF is essential, which is why we support the passage of IFAN. As a company, we’ve seen firsthand the positive impact fiber optic connections can bring to a community. From boosting local economies and revitalizing communities there are so many benefits from a bill such as IFAN.

Benefits of High-Speed Internet

Public Health: Emergency Responders depend on broadband to operate efficiently in the field. Faster connections allow for First Responders to have faster and more coordinated responses with nearby agencies.

Public Safety: It is very common for some rural public safety agencies to lose communications in heavy rain, fog and snow and makes it even harder for law enforcement to dispatch an officer or have access to electronic records. Enabling a faster network from the middle-mile provider to the last-mile alleviates officer safety issues. Police in Boron have me and again commented on the vast improvement in their response times since Race brought fiber Internet connectivity to their city.

Education: Nationally, as many as 7 in 10 teachers assign homework that requires access to broadband, but one in three house- holds do not have access to broadband services. Race customers in gigafied communities have not only seen their children’s grades improve, but many have also gone back to complete higher education or attain a Master’s degree allowing them to better their economic situation.

What can you do to show your support for IFAN & CASF? Visit and subscribe with your email address for updates.

For more information on IFAN and California Emerging Technologies Fund (CETF)