Some people might have opinions on what Texas needs, but what they have got is broadband service delivered through electrical outlets. A test area in north Texas will experience broadband over power lines, or BPL, to see how it works. The tests will start early next year. Power company TXU is the electric power provider who will be offering the service. As an added benefit for the company, the broadband service will allow TXU to receive better information about the status of their power lines.
This is not a unique idea, but it has been hard to overcome technical difficulties and create viable technology for a wide market. The obvious appeal is that electric lines already go everywhere, so the infrastructure costs are low. A test has already been run in Cincinnati.
Users access BPL by plugging a device directly into a power outlet. The key to success will be a simple and inexpensive device, since traditional broadband routers are increasingly affordable.