Originally Posted by bspline
It could be the easiest and potentially cheapest form of access, I just worry if my fridge might catch a virus of some kind
BPL is a *bad* idea, but the general public don't know about the pitfalls. The politicians and businessmen concentrate on the moneymaking side of the technology, and as a result it looks like a good thing for everyone.
In actuality, BPL creates an incredible amount of RF interference. The power lines act as huge antennas, helping to transmit the interference.
Most people brush off the issue when they hear that it will primarily affect amateur radio operators. But the amateur radio operators are officially licensed (under Part 97) to use their technology, and BPL is licensed as a Part 15 operation by the FCC (it's similarly licensed in Canada). This means that any amateur radio operator has been granted priority to use their communications, and *may not* be interfered with by a Part 15 device. The amateur radio operators complain to the FCC, and the FCC is obligated to find the offending device and have its operator shut it down.
There are other consequences, too. Any 47 MHz cordless phones, X-10 wireless remotes (especeially keychain dongles) and remote control car toys are virtually guaranteed to succumb to the RF put off by BPL. These devices must accept the interference because they're also covered under Part 15.
This is to say nothing of the other actual licensed uses. The military, for example, has communications gear that runs in this part of the spectrum. I'm sure they'll have something to say about it the first time that BPL causes them to miss some important communication.
And just to say it again: the Canadian radio licensing scheme is nearly identical to the US. The same threats apply.
For more information about BPL, including real engineers' test reports, take a look at the ARRL's web site.