This Alaskan town is finally getting high-speed internet, thanks to the pandemic : NPR

Technicians and engineers set up antennae receivers on Lena Foss’ residence in Akiak, Alaska. Web speeds will double in the city later this month, when it gains obtain to broadband net.

Katie Basile/KYUK


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Katie Basile/KYUK


Technicians and engineers put in antennae receivers on Lena Foss’ house in Akiak, Alaska. World wide web speeds will double in the town afterwards this month, when it gains obtain to broadband net.

Katie Basile/KYUK

Lena Foss thought she bought lucky when she salvaged a dryer from the dump in Akiak, a Yup’ik village in Western Alaska.

She understood it was damaged, but figured she could repair it by on the lookout at tutorials on-line.

“First issue I did was YouTube how to change a belt,” Foss mentioned. “But the online was so sluggish and I imagined it was squandering gigabytes so I turned that off ahead of I wholly finished how to take care of the dryer.”

Akiak sits alongside the Kuskokwim River, which transforms into a frozen freeway in the wintertime. The only other way to get there is on a 4-seater airplane.

The village’s remote spot has built high-speed internet, which is generally shipped by way of cables, a fantasy for its 460-some citizens. Now, it can be about to develop into a fact in Akiak and rural communities about the country, thanks in section to the pandemic.

For Shawna Williams, obtaining broadband will suggest currently being equipped to see her teachers and classmates. Throughout the pandemic, Williams made a decision to get her university degree, when holding down her whole-time work as a childcare employee, and boosting 5 kids. She has the swiftest world wide web approach available in Akiak, but she suggests it can’t tackle video clip all the time, which suggests she attends her distant lessons by telephone.

“The world wide web is so unreliable, and it truly is ordinarily way too slow, primarily in the evenings when I get off of perform, to load even a PowerPoint,” Williams mentioned.

She says she pays $314 a thirty day period for internet assistance now. But when

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How the pandemic has changed the weather in the technology industry

THE TECH industry recently appeared to be sitting on cloud nine. One record after another fell when quarterly results were reported three months ago. Revenues had grown by 40% on average compared with the same period a year ago and profits by 90% for the five Western technology titans—Alphabet (Google’s parent company), Amazon, Facebook, Apple and Microsoft, collectively known as GAFAM. Indices of tech shares, such as the S&P 500 Information Technology benchmark, climbed to stratospheric heights.

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If the latest round of quarterly earnings are any guide, the tech industry is coming back down to earth. Assuming that the pair meet analysts’ expectations, GAFAM’s revenues and profits will both have increased but by a more modest 26% and 39%, respectively. Share prices are languishing. The slowdown—or breather, if you will—provides additional evidence of the degree to which the pandemic has changed the tech industry. The question now is whether the sector is on a new trajectory or will revert to type over the next few years.

For starters, one of the first predictions when covid-19 hit in early 2020 was that it would make big tech even bigger. Those firms, ran the theory, would be best placed to benefit from an increased demand for digital offerings, whereas smaller firms, having fewer resources to get through the pandemic, would suffer most from its downsides. The first half of this prediction has come true: as the growth of the five firms’ market capitalisation shows. In January 2020 their combined value accounted for 17.5% of the S&P 500.Today their share hovers around 22%.

That said, many smaller companies have also grown in size and value. The pandemic has given rise to a group which could be called “tier-two tech”, the weight of which, measured by market capitalisation, has grown notably relative to the titans. In May we defined this group to include 42 firms with a market value then of no less than $20bn

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