Friday, January 19, 2018 | Updated at 4:47 AM ET

LATEST NEWS

Internet Expansion

Forget "loony" weather balloons; Google is now testing the prospect of delivering high-speed gigabit Internet via solar-powered drones, if a recent report is accurate.

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When you think of online piracy, the first image that comes to mind is probably of American teenagers in their dorm rooms, bittorrenting Hollywood movies. "Widespread" piracy, meanwhile, perhaps connotes a visual of bootleg DVDs being hawked on the streets of Shanghai. But perhaps it'd be more accurate to think of an average Chilean family sitting down to watch TV.

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Just months after publically unveiling an experimental technology that produces next-generation gigabit Internet speeds on cable networks that are already in place throughout much of the country, Comcast's impending super high-speed Internet service has officially gone live -- at least for one Philadelphia-area home.

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Gigabit broadband is spreading across the country at an accelerating pace, as this week AT&T and Google both announced plans for expansion. But AT&T is now pulling ahead in the national fiber rollout race -- thanks, in part, to Google.

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According to the International Telecommunications Union, 3.2 billion people are now on the Internet and wireless connectivity has become the dominant path for people to get online.

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Facebook announced it is teaming with French communications company Eutelsat in a partnership to beam the Internet down to Africa from a satellite.

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Starting on Monday April 28, Netflix's instant streaming service will join the programming lineup for some cable subscribers in the U.S., with an official channel dedicated to the insurgent internet entertainment service. The move is a breakthrough for Netflix, which has been trying to make its popular video streaming more mainstream.

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Google Fiber is a relatively new, semi-experimental super-fast internet service provider that only a few cities in the U.S. have had the pleasure of experiencing so far, and other municipalities are bending over backwards to try to get Google's gigabit fiber internet. Now AT&T wants to play the same game with its fiber service, including in some of Google's prospective domain.

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On Monday, Google bought Titan Aerospace, developer of solar-powered drones that may purportedly fly uninterrupted for years. It's yet another move in the ongoing race between Google and Facebook to build (and control) the next big expansion of the internet - in developing countries.

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In its FCC filing on Tuesday, Comcast put forward its argument why a merger with Time Warner Cable, the second-largest cable company in the U.S., would be beneficial to consumers, market competition, and Comcast's survival in the new media landscape.

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The internet is about to get a lot bigger, come mid-March, when another batch of gTLDs (generic top level domains: various alternatives for the ".com" or ".org" that follows a web address) hit the public. On March 19, one of those gTLDs up for grabs is .UNO, the first dedicated domain for Spanish-speakers.

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With the World Wide Web turning 25 this year, the Pew Research Internet Project unveiled a massive study (with more to come) looking at how Americans' lives and attitudes have changed over the course of the Web's life.

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Google announced recently it was considering some new cities for its Google Fiber internet service, including some heavily Latino cities. But can they make the cut?

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Facebook has decided to make its largest purchase ever with the acquisition of popular messaging service WhatsApp. Why did this messaging app fetch one of the largest sums in the web industry's recent history? Here are a few reasons.

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The Federal Communications Commission announced that it plans to double the money it's spending on faster internet connections in public schools and libraries. The initiative was part of President Obama's State of the Union address, where he promised that 15,000 schools would get faster, better internet access.

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Cuba is one of the least connected countries in the western hemisphere when it comes to the internet. That's why technology experts and programmers are meeting in South Florida for the first ever "Hackathon for Cuba."

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