Along with its wireless carrier brethren, wireline broadband providers have also been engaging in a price war of sorts over the past year, which is roiling the market with a degree of instability. One one side of the equation, Google Fiber is seeking to shake up the broadband industry with its 1 Gbps fiber-to-the-premises offering. Meanwhile, on the other, leaner side, major players like AT&T and Verizon are busy divesting themselves of all of their wireline assets. What to make of these seemingly opposing strategies going forward?

A newly released report seeks to make some sense of the disarray, at least from a pricing standpoint, while also breaking down speeds into three groups: 1-50 Mbps; 75-500 Mbps; and 1 Gbps. Hawaiian Telecom leads everybody with their $19.95 per month (for 5 Mbps) tier, and things get faster and more expensive from there, topping out with Hawaiian, again, at more $300 per month for the privilege of surfing the Internet at 500 Mbps. AT&T, however, offers 1 Gbps for $70 per month (with the caveat that you agree to have your web traffic monitored by the telco, natch); Consolidated beats them by a nickel for the same throughput speed, with no snooping, but certainly a less expansive reach. The middle of the pack, by price and speed, is filled with anarchy: for example, TDS will give you 300 Mbps for $75 per month, or you can pay nearly $55 a month to Lumos for a meager 20 Mbps.

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