High-level U.N. meeting targets broadband access

Broadband--how to deploy it and who benefits--isn't just a hot topic in the U.S., it's an international phenomenon. As evidence, the United Nations General Assembly will meet Sept. 20-22 to hear a report from a group of business and government leaders called the Broadband Commission to see what part broadband can plan in improving the world.

The group has the support--and a major presence--from ITU, whose secretary-general Hamadoun Toure has said that "affordable, ubiquitous broadband networks will be as critical to social and economic prosperity as networks such as transport, water and power."

In another, more distant part of the world, Australia continues to roil after elections left a National Broadband Plan higher in the air than a satellite. While the Aussies try to sort out a government--and thus a plan--the latest ripple in the pond is word that Huawei will continue to support a new high-speed broadband technology center even if the Labor Party's $43 billion NBN plan goes away.

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