Struggling high-speed Internet service provider Covad Communications has expanded its broadband service for small businesses to nine new markets, including Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Los Angeles and Seattle. Telextend, which costs $449 a month, was introduced in November in five markets. The service provides T1 Internet access at speeds of at least 144kbps, regardless of the customer's distance from the nearest switching center.
Currently, digital subscriber lines (DSL) are generally limited to about 3 miles, and the DSL signals typically degrade over distance, limiting the download speeds for some faraway customers. Covad, which once had a market value well over $10 billion, recently reorganized under Chapter 11 bankruptcy and expects to exit bankruptcy on Thursday based on a bondholder agreement approved by the court.