May 17, 2006 4:00 AM PDT

Beware of broadband speed overkill

Today's high-speed Internet access packages may sound tempting, but consumers should think long and hard about how much broadband they actually need before they ante up.

Certainly, Internet users switching from a 56Kbps (kilobits per second) dial-up connection to any flavor of broadband can immediately see what they were missing.

But it can be a different story when making the leap into premium services. Though data-intensive utilities like high-definition video could one day place a heavy burden on the Net pipes into the average consumer's home, some analysts say many current Internet users don't even come close to using all the bandwidth that's offered to them in a standard broadband service.

"Unless you live with five Internet addicts, it's hard to come up with a use case for some of these high-end bandwidth packages," said Joe Laszlo, an analyst with JupiterResearch. "The cable operators are trying to keep up with Verizon's Fios service, and they can't look like the slowest guy on the block."

Laszlo's reality check comes as cable operators and telephone companies compete to offer the fastest, most expansive broadband service around.

The company with the network to beat appears to be Verizon Communications, which is extending fiber directly to homes to carry a triple play of services including high-speed Internet access, television and telephone service. It currently offers three tiers in its Fios service: 5Mbps (megabits per second) downstream/2Mbps upstream for $34.95 per month; 15Mbps/2Mbps for $44.95; and 30 Mbps/5mbps for $179.95.

In March, Comcast, the nation's largest cable operator, doubled download speeds of its fastest broadband service in four cities to 16Mbps for downloads and 1Mbps for uploads at a cost of $52.95 per month. It offers 8Mbps downloads in the rest of its territory.

Cablevision, which also competes with Verizon, offers consumers two tiers of service: 15Mbps/1Mbps for $49.95 or 30Mbps/2Mbps for $64.95.

Time Warner has also jacked up the speeds of its service. In certain areas of the East Coast it offers a 7Mbps/384Kbps package for $39.95. In other Time Warner regions, users get 5Mbps/384Kbps for $39.95.

Of course, it's not all a speed competition. Though consumers may not yet need all that broadband, carriers argue that customers tend to make their buying decisions based on speed.

"There is a small fraction of the population that always wants more, but most people are happy with what they have."
--Joe Laszlo, Jupiter Research analyst

"If you look at what is happening in Europe and Asia, where they have more advanced services than we do here in the U.S., you see that whoever wins the broadband war in terms of the highest speeds has the highest penetration and leads in market share," said John Schommer, director of Fios product management for Verizon.

Cable operators and phone companies also justify boosting speeds (and sometimes prices) by pointing to all the new multimedia applications people are using. They say their customers need more bandwidth to listen to music, watch videos and play games on the Internet.

But JupiterResearch's Laszlo said most of the services that tout faster speeds are overkill for the majority of broadband users today because the multimedia applications that consumers use only consume a fraction of the available bandwidth.

For example, a good quality video streamed from CNN.com, Comedy Central's MotherLoad or even CNET's own site only takes up between 500Kbps and 600Kbps worth of bandwidth. Streaming audio consumes even less bandwidth. A service such as Real's Rhapsody music player, which offers near CD-quality sound, uses about 128Kbps to 256Kbps. Then there is Internet telephony, which only uses about 56Kbps.

See more CNET content tagged:
Joe Laszlo, broadband service, broadband, bandwidth, cable company

205 comments

Join the conversation!
Add your comment
Beware of Bandwidth Throttling!
Many ISP's are using hardware to throttle bandwidth. This way you never reach anywhere near the advertised speeds. There are a few reasons they do this. The main reason is they don't really have the infrastructure to handle the bandwidth they offer. Many ISP's want to up ytheir advertised speeds without investing in more infrastructure.
They also use this to "control" things like Bit Torrent traffic. My opinion is that if I pay for 5 megs of service, I should be able to use it anyway I see fit. This should become a much more interesting topic as more companies like Warner Bros. use Bit Torrent as a viable means of distribution.
Would consumers stand for it if the phone comanies started limiting the amount of time you can spend calling 800 numbers because they couldn't handle all the traffic. They've just failed to keep up.
My ISP uses a device called an Elacoya switch to throttle all bandwidth at the head-end and to virtually eliminate file sharing from the network. The only problem is they've now used it to slow all traffic due to heavy volume of customers. Games suffer, VOIP suffers...basically all Charter Cable customers suffer!
Posted by cidman2001 (223 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I agree
communications company should deliver what they advertise. And while it may not be possible for me to get the fastest download speeds (for technical reasons) I don't like knowing that they purposely slow my connection speeds even further.
Posted by Chevaliermusic (72 comments )
Link Flag
I disagree
Users are not free to "use it as they see fit." No ISP could possibly provide all of the bandwidth necessary to support al of their users at the rated line speeds all the time. Its like a timeshare. Most surfers are "bursty" with their bandwidth use. A user clicks on a link, the page and all of it's content are transmitted at the fastest possible rate and then the user (GASP!) reads the page. Then, they click on another link and the traffic gets bursty again. That is the way it is intended to be used. There are a few exceptions like large file downloads that happen once in a while, games that transmit lots of small packets in a relatively short amount of time, and streaming video and audio services that intensly occupy the connection but for relatively short periods of time.

People who are bandwidth hogs like to run their own game servers, their own web sites, stream video and audio FROM their home computers, and upload tons of worthless video clips of their garage bands to sites like YouTube and Google Video.

Most of the time, the bandwidth allocation structure works just fine. People need to realize that if they have intense bandwidth requirements, they need to have business class Internet service. Especially if they have cable Internet access. Cable is a shared medium. Which means that all of the available bandwidth is shared between given neighborhoods. You may have a 20MB sync rate, but it means nothing when your neighbor does too and they are downloading huge movie files for hours on end. With DSL, that is not so much of a problem but the outbound connection for an ISP on the other end of that DSL connection will suffer if their are a bunch of bandwidth hogs monopolizing the connection.
Posted by thenet411 (415 comments )
Link Flag
I think it's 'overkill'...
...when C|net puts my reply in three (3) times!

LOL
Posted by sgt1035 (27 comments )
Link Flag
Who's ultimately to blame for the throttling.
Please see my other post here:

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://news.cbsi.com/5208-1034-0.html?forumID=1&#38;threadID=16995&#38;messageID=147346&#38;start=-145" target="_newWindow">http://news.cbsi.com/5208-1034-0.html?forumID=1&#38;threadID=16995&#38;messageID=147346&#38;start=-145</a>

I completely agree with the point that our *symmetrical* bandwidth is absolutely outrageous (none of these network mediums, besides cable, are based on asymmetric models -- meaning, it's cable providers, DSL providers, and so on who are the ones responsible for creating an asymmetric network, not the actual protocols themselves), but simultaneously, the reason end-user ISPs do this is because of backbone providers and unjustified circuit/bandwidth costs.

Again, see my aforementioned for who to ultimately blame. Be sure to point the finger in the right direction. :-)
Posted by katamari (310 comments )
Link Flag
Also beware of usage caps
The author is probably right that 1 or 2 Mb/s is currently
enough for a lot of people, but only if it's truly unlimited
service. I've heard of some providers imposing caps of as
little as 2GB per month, which could impact you from time to
time if you really need something now and your ISP says you
have already downloaded too much this month.

Of course, if you are relying on cable broadband, then these
lower speed for lower cost packages might not even be an option.
Posted by Jackson Cracker (272 comments )
Link Flag
Over Sold and Then Some
Your are exactly correct with ISP's over selling
what their infastructure's will handle, I have 6Mbps DSL with SBC now AT&#38;T. The Expert package is what I currently have and now you can no longer get this package in the area of Texas I live in now, due to the fact of all the new DSL customers their adding daily aka 1.5Mbps. My line will handle 9890Kbps down and 1760Kbps up, for years they told me my phone lines wouldn't handle the 6Mbps speeds=CRAP...The above speeds are what my router says the line is capable of handling...It's their infastructure that can't handle the speeds not my phone line, I live right next to a RT which I'm hooked into now, the CO which I was connected to for the 3Mbps is 1.2 miles from where I live.
The phone and cable companies need to quit lying about reasons why you can't get a certain speed and fess up that their infastructures are inadequate to handle the services their selling.
Posted by oldzoom (2 comments )
Link Flag
ISP Throtting is a Bias-Based Approach
For those of you who do not know, your ISP has often blocked ports (such as port 25 for SPAM protection) without your explicit notification. This is because it is a proactive measure to protect the security of their system, as well as the "experience" other customers have paid money for (so they aren't bombarded by junk emails).

However, the throttling of port traffic (especially known torrent ports) is one that is disheartening because their reason is to prevent increased use of bandwith within their infastructure. Period. The throttling of port activity is a bias-based approach because it generally throttles ports of torrent clients, and will limit ports that exercise high bandwith usage (due to changing ports used for your torrent app). Why?! Here's why:

1) Upgrading network infastructure is done by a "expected-impact" notion. By limiting high bandwith usage by customers, they can reduce the need for extensive and costly upgrades because the overall system load expected in the future is less than an unthrottled structure.

2) System protection is just as important to them as it is to you. Excessive server load increases downtime and the frequency of repairs. Yes, they don't want to spend more money than what is necessary - and neither do you. Sadly, in almost every TOS I've had from various ISPs, they are given rights to pretty much protect their @ss from "dangerous" behavior of users...such as excessive bandwith usage. It sucks, but it's their subjective right to exercise this point.

3) Looking at the research numbers, torrent ports are one of the primary targets because they make up the most active ports of residential customers (except for port 80 because of the vast number of non-torrent internet users). Taking what they know leads them to see that reducing torrent client bandwith will have the largest reduction in network activity.

4) Protection of other paying customers - In the event you have cable access, you should be a little happy that this occurs. Unlike the DSL counterpart, you SHARE your connection with a slew of other customers on a shared node. So if enough customers on your node are downloading at the maximum speed possible, you and everyone else on the node will notice a significant performance decrease. Note: You paid for this type of service!

I completly disagree with targeting torrent clients, the disturbances it causes VOIP services, etc. From a legal standpoint they are in the clear because of the subjective interpertation of the TOS rules. Sadly, customers will get tired of complaining about this and eventually say "Screw it", quit complaining and it will become a norm of the industry.

Which frankly sucks.
Posted by Robert Luft (2 comments )
Link Flag
Beware of Bandwidth Throttling!
Many ISP's are using hardware to throttle bandwidth. This way you never reach anywhere near the advertised speeds. There are a few reasons they do this. The main reason is they don't really have the infrastructure to handle the bandwidth they offer. Many ISP's want to up ytheir advertised speeds without investing in more infrastructure.
They also use this to "control" things like Bit Torrent traffic. My opinion is that if I pay for 5 megs of service, I should be able to use it anyway I see fit. This should become a much more interesting topic as more companies like Warner Bros. use Bit Torrent as a viable means of distribution.
Would consumers stand for it if the phone comanies started limiting the amount of time you can spend calling 800 numbers because they couldn't handle all the traffic. They've just failed to keep up.
My ISP uses a device called an Elacoya switch to throttle all bandwidth at the head-end and to virtually eliminate file sharing from the network. The only problem is they've now used it to slow all traffic due to heavy volume of customers. Games suffer, VOIP suffers...basically all Charter Cable customers suffer!
Posted by cidman2001 (223 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I agree
communications company should deliver what they advertise. And while it may not be possible for me to get the fastest download speeds (for technical reasons) I don't like knowing that they purposely slow my connection speeds even further.
Posted by Chevaliermusic (72 comments )
Link Flag
I disagree
Users are not free to "use it as they see fit." No ISP could possibly provide all of the bandwidth necessary to support al of their users at the rated line speeds all the time. Its like a timeshare. Most surfers are "bursty" with their bandwidth use. A user clicks on a link, the page and all of it's content are transmitted at the fastest possible rate and then the user (GASP!) reads the page. Then, they click on another link and the traffic gets bursty again. That is the way it is intended to be used. There are a few exceptions like large file downloads that happen once in a while, games that transmit lots of small packets in a relatively short amount of time, and streaming video and audio services that intensly occupy the connection but for relatively short periods of time.

People who are bandwidth hogs like to run their own game servers, their own web sites, stream video and audio FROM their home computers, and upload tons of worthless video clips of their garage bands to sites like YouTube and Google Video.

Most of the time, the bandwidth allocation structure works just fine. People need to realize that if they have intense bandwidth requirements, they need to have business class Internet service. Especially if they have cable Internet access. Cable is a shared medium. Which means that all of the available bandwidth is shared between given neighborhoods. You may have a 20MB sync rate, but it means nothing when your neighbor does too and they are downloading huge movie files for hours on end. With DSL, that is not so much of a problem but the outbound connection for an ISP on the other end of that DSL connection will suffer if their are a bunch of bandwidth hogs monopolizing the connection.
Posted by thenet411 (415 comments )
Link Flag
I think it's 'overkill'...
...when C|net puts my reply in three (3) times!

LOL
Posted by sgt1035 (27 comments )
Link Flag
Who's ultimately to blame for the throttling.
Please see my other post here:

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://news.cbsi.com/5208-1034-0.html?forumID=1&#38;threadID=16995&#38;messageID=147346&#38;start=-145" target="_newWindow">http://news.cbsi.com/5208-1034-0.html?forumID=1&#38;threadID=16995&#38;messageID=147346&#38;start=-145</a>

I completely agree with the point that our *symmetrical* bandwidth is absolutely outrageous (none of these network mediums, besides cable, are based on asymmetric models -- meaning, it's cable providers, DSL providers, and so on who are the ones responsible for creating an asymmetric network, not the actual protocols themselves), but simultaneously, the reason end-user ISPs do this is because of backbone providers and unjustified circuit/bandwidth costs.

Again, see my aforementioned for who to ultimately blame. Be sure to point the finger in the right direction. :-)
Posted by katamari (310 comments )
Link Flag
Also beware of usage caps
The author is probably right that 1 or 2 Mb/s is currently
enough for a lot of people, but only if it's truly unlimited
service. I've heard of some providers imposing caps of as
little as 2GB per month, which could impact you from time to
time if you really need something now and your ISP says you
have already downloaded too much this month.

Of course, if you are relying on cable broadband, then these
lower speed for lower cost packages might not even be an option.
Posted by Jackson Cracker (272 comments )
Link Flag
Over Sold and Then Some
Your are exactly correct with ISP's over selling
what their infastructure's will handle, I have 6Mbps DSL with SBC now AT&#38;T. The Expert package is what I currently have and now you can no longer get this package in the area of Texas I live in now, due to the fact of all the new DSL customers their adding daily aka 1.5Mbps. My line will handle 9890Kbps down and 1760Kbps up, for years they told me my phone lines wouldn't handle the 6Mbps speeds=CRAP...The above speeds are what my router says the line is capable of handling...It's their infastructure that can't handle the speeds not my phone line, I live right next to a RT which I'm hooked into now, the CO which I was connected to for the 3Mbps is 1.2 miles from where I live.
The phone and cable companies need to quit lying about reasons why you can't get a certain speed and fess up that their infastructures are inadequate to handle the services their selling.
Posted by oldzoom (2 comments )
Link Flag
ISP Throtting is a Bias-Based Approach
For those of you who do not know, your ISP has often blocked ports (such as port 25 for SPAM protection) without your explicit notification. This is because it is a proactive measure to protect the security of their system, as well as the "experience" other customers have paid money for (so they aren't bombarded by junk emails).

However, the throttling of port traffic (especially known torrent ports) is one that is disheartening because their reason is to prevent increased use of bandwith within their infastructure. Period. The throttling of port activity is a bias-based approach because it generally throttles ports of torrent clients, and will limit ports that exercise high bandwith usage (due to changing ports used for your torrent app). Why?! Here's why:

1) Upgrading network infastructure is done by a "expected-impact" notion. By limiting high bandwith usage by customers, they can reduce the need for extensive and costly upgrades because the overall system load expected in the future is less than an unthrottled structure.

2) System protection is just as important to them as it is to you. Excessive server load increases downtime and the frequency of repairs. Yes, they don't want to spend more money than what is necessary - and neither do you. Sadly, in almost every TOS I've had from various ISPs, they are given rights to pretty much protect their @ss from "dangerous" behavior of users...such as excessive bandwith usage. It sucks, but it's their subjective right to exercise this point.

3) Looking at the research numbers, torrent ports are one of the primary targets because they make up the most active ports of residential customers (except for port 80 because of the vast number of non-torrent internet users). Taking what they know leads them to see that reducing torrent client bandwith will have the largest reduction in network activity.

4) Protection of other paying customers - In the event you have cable access, you should be a little happy that this occurs. Unlike the DSL counterpart, you SHARE your connection with a slew of other customers on a shared node. So if enough customers on your node are downloading at the maximum speed possible, you and everyone else on the node will notice a significant performance decrease. Note: You paid for this type of service!

I completly disagree with targeting torrent clients, the disturbances it causes VOIP services, etc. From a legal standpoint they are in the clear because of the subjective interpertation of the TOS rules. Sadly, customers will get tired of complaining about this and eventually say "Screw it", quit complaining and it will become a norm of the industry.

Which frankly sucks.
Posted by Robert Luft (2 comments )
Link Flag
You ignored software.
Missing in the assessment of bandwidth usage was the need to download extremely large software updates. It is not unusual to download a 30 megabyte software update file every day. Considering that thruput is usually less than 25% of the rated line speed due to overhead and sharing, the extra bandwidth dramatically reduces the amount of time required to keep a system up to date. In today's world most people would spend a few dollars to save an hour or two of work at the computer.
Posted by ua549 (6 comments )
Reply Link Flag
That only applies to Windows users.
Not to sound like a snob, but that's a cost
associated with the choice of software and
really isn't the ISPs fault.

If you are using Windows, that's just part of
the overall cost. It's a cost other platforms
don't have (not that others don't get updates,
but very few are critical and they are typically
about 1/10th the size). Windows must pose a
value that exceeds the relatively high cost to
you, otherwise you'd use something else. So,
there's little point complaining about it, it's
the way your preferred software works -- it's
not a common feature of software or fault of the
ISP.
Posted by Zymurgist (397 comments )
Link Flag
Connection speed does not matter in some ways
The only reason I state this is at that I run a gig connection at my home (I love my fiber!) and I have not seen a massive increase in speed. Why? Lots of web sites throttle their speed per connection established and of course, the inherent limitations due to proximity of a server. I'd venture a guess that most web sites are hosted in North Virginia (Herndon, Ashburn, etc.) and therefore, you will see a decreased speed in downloading from sites that are so far away from you. So even if you are running a 10 gigabit connection, don't expect that Linux ISO downloading from the other side of the country to download in an instant.
Posted by David Dudley (446 comments )
Link Flag
That is unusual....
I guess you must be running something like Linux that has far many flaws requiring regular patches.

Its not usual to download updated like that on Windows. Updates that you do have to download if you were running a recent verison of Windows use an 'incremental' patch technology and are usually very small.
Posted by richto (895 comments )
Link Flag
That is unusual....
I guess you must be running something like Linux that has many flaws requiring regular patches.

Its not usual to download updated like that on Windows. Updates that you do have to download if you were running a recent verison of Windows use an 'incremental' patch technology and are usually very small.
Posted by richto (895 comments )
Link Flag
You ignored software.
Missing in the assessment of bandwidth usage was the need to download extremely large software updates. It is not unusual to download a 30 megabyte software update file every day. Considering that thruput is usually less than 25% of the rated line speed due to overhead and sharing, the extra bandwidth dramatically reduces the amount of time required to keep a system up to date. In today's world most people would spend a few dollars to save an hour or two of work at the computer.
Posted by ua549 (6 comments )
Reply Link Flag
That only applies to Windows users.
Not to sound like a snob, but that's a cost
associated with the choice of software and
really isn't the ISPs fault.

If you are using Windows, that's just part of
the overall cost. It's a cost other platforms
don't have (not that others don't get updates,
but very few are critical and they are typically
about 1/10th the size). Windows must pose a
value that exceeds the relatively high cost to
you, otherwise you'd use something else. So,
there's little point complaining about it, it's
the way your preferred software works -- it's
not a common feature of software or fault of the
ISP.
Posted by Zymurgist (397 comments )
Link Flag
Connection speed does not matter in some ways
The only reason I state this is at that I run a gig connection at my home (I love my fiber!) and I have not seen a massive increase in speed. Why? Lots of web sites throttle their speed per connection established and of course, the inherent limitations due to proximity of a server. I'd venture a guess that most web sites are hosted in North Virginia (Herndon, Ashburn, etc.) and therefore, you will see a decreased speed in downloading from sites that are so far away from you. So even if you are running a 10 gigabit connection, don't expect that Linux ISO downloading from the other side of the country to download in an instant.
Posted by David Dudley (446 comments )
Link Flag
That is unusual....
I guess you must be running something like Linux that has far many flaws requiring regular patches.

Its not usual to download updated like that on Windows. Updates that you do have to download if you were running a recent verison of Windows use an 'incremental' patch technology and are usually very small.
Posted by richto (895 comments )
Link Flag
That is unusual....
I guess you must be running something like Linux that has many flaws requiring regular patches.

Its not usual to download updated like that on Windows. Updates that you do have to download if you were running a recent verison of Windows use an 'incremental' patch technology and are usually very small.
Posted by richto (895 comments )
Link Flag
what's with the price ?
maybe the prices dont strike you as excessive but to me they do.

I live in israel and I pay less than $9/month for 2mbps ADSL.

There's fierce copetition here and that's the price most companies charge new users.

The sweet thing is that there are over 10 companies, so it's very easy to switch to another when the contract expires, and keep paying the $9 new user price.

But even the regular price is $15 max.

$34 for an internet connection ? geez.
Posted by qbitqbert (7 comments )
Reply Link Flag
You've got it "made"
That sounds really great. Not quite as keen as the US but both are really "dirt cheap" as far as I'm concerned. In Spain I'm paying around US$58/month for an advertised 1Mb download speed. Thats from the State owned Telcom company who control just about everything. Of course I never get anywhere near that speed nor do I know anyone else getting anywhere near it. We usually get around 750/800kbs at best. Check on our prices if you will, but remember that in Spain it's customary to advertise prices but then quietly ADD ON the State tax (16%) when its time to pay.
Posted by davidvh2 (10 comments )
Link Flag
The beauty...
That is the beauty of government granted monopolies. They don't really have to compete. All around the world there are better options for broadband that here in the US.

I have multiple choices on paper. I have Time Warner, Insight, WoW and another cable company I can use, except for WoW(I am unsure), I know the other 3 uses the same backbone, so really 1 carrier. I have 10 choices of DSL, all running on SBC lines to SBC central offices.

The UK is a great example of progress, they have been hammmering on BT to get loops truly opened and it is progressing. Here in the US the opposite is happening, the Telco's are complaining the other ISP's are hampering their "growth". What they mean is that they are taking care of their customers better and don't want to be put out of business by true competition.
Posted by schubb (202 comments )
Link Flag
Prices are all over the board.
Go to Japan, Korea, or China and you'll get
50Mbps down / 3Mbps up for $30/month ($0.60/Mbps
down, $10/Mbps up). I have Comcast and get 7Mbps
down and 0.8Mbps up for $50/month ($7.14/Mbps
down, $62.5/Mbps up).

So, my service costs 7x as much and capped at
1/7th the speed. Actually, if you factor the
general cost of living, I'm paying about 10.5x
per Mbps. Either Comcast is making money hand
over fist, or they're not running a very tight
ship. I don't care, I just don't like it.

What really gets me is that what I really want
is to be able to have a higher upload speed (at
least as an option. I'm no "pirate", but I'd
like to distribute some of my videos and such
under my own terms. Nobody provides decent
upload speeds.

I frequently saturate my upstream bandwidth
allotment.
Posted by Zymurgist (397 comments )
Link Flag
Yes...but...
This is "America 2006', where big business prevails. When you're an American (I was born here)you're conditioned to become complacent about big business ripping you off (with government assistance, of course.
Posted by sgt1035 (27 comments )
Link Flag
what's with the price ?
maybe the prices dont strike you as excessive but to me they do.

I live in israel and I pay less than $9/month for 2mbps ADSL.

There's fierce copetition here and that's the price most companies charge new users.

The sweet thing is that there are over 10 companies, so it's very easy to switch to another when the contract expires, and keep paying the $9 new user price.

But even the regular price is $15 max.

$34 for an internet connection ? geez.
Posted by qbitqbert (7 comments )
Reply Link Flag
You've got it "made"
That sounds really great. Not quite as keen as the US but both are really "dirt cheap" as far as I'm concerned. In Spain I'm paying around US$58/month for an advertised 1Mb download speed. Thats from the State owned Telcom company who control just about everything. Of course I never get anywhere near that speed nor do I know anyone else getting anywhere near it. We usually get around 750/800kbs at best. Check on our prices if you will, but remember that in Spain it's customary to advertise prices but then quietly ADD ON the State tax (16%) when its time to pay.
Posted by davidvh2 (10 comments )
Link Flag
The beauty...
That is the beauty of government granted monopolies. They don't really have to compete. All around the world there are better options for broadband that here in the US.

I have multiple choices on paper. I have Time Warner, Insight, WoW and another cable company I can use, except for WoW(I am unsure), I know the other 3 uses the same backbone, so really 1 carrier. I have 10 choices of DSL, all running on SBC lines to SBC central offices.

The UK is a great example of progress, they have been hammmering on BT to get loops truly opened and it is progressing. Here in the US the opposite is happening, the Telco's are complaining the other ISP's are hampering their "growth". What they mean is that they are taking care of their customers better and don't want to be put out of business by true competition.
Posted by schubb (202 comments )
Link Flag
Prices are all over the board.
Go to Japan, Korea, or China and you'll get
50Mbps down / 3Mbps up for $30/month ($0.60/Mbps
down, $10/Mbps up). I have Comcast and get 7Mbps
down and 0.8Mbps up for $50/month ($7.14/Mbps
down, $62.5/Mbps up).

So, my service costs 7x as much and capped at
1/7th the speed. Actually, if you factor the
general cost of living, I'm paying about 10.5x
per Mbps. Either Comcast is making money hand
over fist, or they're not running a very tight
ship. I don't care, I just don't like it.

What really gets me is that what I really want
is to be able to have a higher upload speed (at
least as an option. I'm no "pirate", but I'd
like to distribute some of my videos and such
under my own terms. Nobody provides decent
upload speeds.

I frequently saturate my upstream bandwidth
allotment.
Posted by Zymurgist (397 comments )
Link Flag
Yes...but...
This is "America 2006', where big business prevails. When you're an American (I was born here)you're conditioned to become complacent about big business ripping you off (with government assistance, of course.
Posted by sgt1035 (27 comments )
Link Flag
Isn't it funny...
... that they keep boosting our bandwidth but really dislike it when you use the bandwidth aloted to you.
Posted by TheShane (55 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Isn't it funny...
... that they keep boosting our bandwidth but really dislike it when you use the bandwidth aloted to you.
Posted by TheShane (55 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Symmetry and The Creation of Wealth
This article is deeply saddening. I'm not sure where CNet's loyalties lay, but this shows a gross misunderstanding of the tight dependency between bandwidth infrastructure, economics, global supply chains, and the creation of regional wealth.

The real story here is that the American public, of which only 14% have passports with less than 25% using them in any given year, have no idea how the build-out and adoption of broadband is transforming areas of the globe, be it the much-mentioned South Korea, or Northern Europe, and now much of Asia (especially China), the rest of Europe and even Northern Africa.

In addition, this is NOT about download speeds, it's about asymmetric designed (traditional PUSH architecture for delivering TV) networks compared to symmetrical networks, where upload and download speeds are closer to the same. Symmetry changes everything, allowing the promises to be realized of true interactive communicaitons across the IP infrastgructure.

Most Americans do not know that the U.S. has dropped from 3rd to 13th in true broadband penetration in the developed countries in just 5 short years. Most Americans do not know how people in, say South Korea are using their 45+ Mb/s - and it's not just gaming. Americans do not wonder why a typical household can get from 100 Mb/s to 1 Gb/s in Hong Kong, starting at $10.00 per month.

Why can't customers in the U.S. get speeds and prices like that here, the greatest technological and innovative country in the world.

Now that's an interesting question, and an article for some objective journalistic entity.

The negative affect of the U.S. monopolistic and duopolisitic approach to our bandwidth infrastructure is tremendous, and out global competition speak of it daily. We are being economically hamstrung by poor bandwidth infrastructure, our ability to participate more aggressively in global markets and supply chains, and therefore not experincing the resulting creation of regional wealth.

And worse of all, articles such as yours keep Americans' expectations low, and, therefore, they do not demand the better services and products being delivered over the IP infrastructure to the rest of the developed world.

I have to ask, who paid for the Jupiter Research quote? Verizon, who are not trying to cut back on EvDo usage by customers who are using - not abusing - the EvDo IP capabilities?

Ther is one simple story here, if you have the guts to report it: why don't the U.S. telephone and cable companies build bandwidth infrastructure which will give America a competitive edge? Why are they continually building up more PUSH in their networks, leveraging old technology, instead of building symmetrical networks, like the 100 Mb/s ethernet network you have in your home or office?

Maybe, once the GAO begins and completes their study on where $200 billion of U.S. tax payer dollars to the telephone companies went over the past 20 years (with the promise to build a 45Mb/s fiber optic network to the home for U.S. citizens), CNet will have something real to report on.

&gt;&gt;tbs&lt;&lt;
Posted by TheoBaby2006 (4 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Even worse
Dropping to 13th may not be accurate either. The reporting method allowed by the gov't is not nearly accurate.

Recently it was brought to light that broadband carriers would report entire zip codes as having broadband even though there we large sections inside that zip code that were not serviced.

Your numbers may be updated to reflect that, but if not, we are probably no where near 13th. Sad is it not?
Posted by schubb (202 comments )
Link Flag
Applause!!!
Finally! Someone who uses the brain to THINK!!!
Posted by sgt1035 (27 comments )
Link Flag
Applause!!!
Finally! Someone who uses the brain to THINK!!!
Posted by sgt1035 (27 comments )
Link Flag
Applause!!!
Finally! Someone who uses the brain to THINK!!!
Posted by sgt1035 (27 comments )
Link Flag
Applause!!!
Finally! Someone who uses the brain to THINK!!!
Posted by sgt1035 (27 comments )
Link Flag
Excellent commentary; AT&T FTTx happening though
Thanks for your comments, but I think you are missing some
details like from AT&#38;T in the IL/MO area that is happening now:

Fiber to the Premise (FTTP for new developments) and Fiber to
the Node (FTTN for targeted overbuilds) networks (jointly called
FTTx) facilitates the evolution of our Local Exchange Carrier
(LEC) to an IP-based provider that delivers superior voice, video,
and internet applications. By deploying the FTTx network within
the LEC, SBCs core offering will evolve from traditional voice to
a full suite of products (i.e., triple play = voice, video and data)
by 2007. Additional products such as video on demand and
video teleconferencing may be enabled on the FTTx network at
lower incremental costs. This infrastructure, with robust
bandwidth and the ability to more easily deploy new services as
market demands are revealed, lays the foundation by which the
company will gain differentiation from competitors.
Posted by libertyforall1776 (650 comments )
Link Flag
Not really
While I agree with many points you make, be careful of basing your assessment in other countries claimed performances.
First, in many (most) small countries the speed advertised is local loop. If you try to access to any content outside the region (and that's 99% of the content you want to access) and your performance drops to less than 1Mbps (sometimes much less) and with huge latencies that kill the experience. It is easy to sell you 1Gbps if that's only within a city.
Second, even locally, those speeds are rarely achieved.
Third, while there ARE some countries that offer decent speed, most others do not. I know. I'm paying U$S70/mo for a theoretical 1Mbps, but in reality my max download speed can rarely get over 256Kbps.
So there are other explanations for the US situation. Basically, in a big country where accesses need to be to locations thousands of miles away, obtaining the same performance is way more complex and expensive than in locations like South Korea.
Posted by Hernys (744 comments )
Link Flag
Symmetry and The Creation of Wealth
This article is deeply saddening. I'm not sure where CNet's loyalties lay, but this shows a gross misunderstanding of the tight dependency between bandwidth infrastructure, economics, global supply chains, and the creation of regional wealth.

The real story here is that the American public, of which only 14% have passports with less than 25% using them in any given year, have no idea how the build-out and adoption of broadband is transforming areas of the globe, be it the much-mentioned South Korea, or Northern Europe, and now much of Asia (especially China), the rest of Europe and even Northern Africa.

In addition, this is NOT about download speeds, it's about asymmetric designed (traditional PUSH architecture for delivering TV) networks compared to symmetrical networks, where upload and download speeds are closer to the same. Symmetry changes everything, allowing the promises to be realized of true interactive communicaitons across the IP infrastgructure.

Most Americans do not know that the U.S. has dropped from 3rd to 13th in true broadband penetration in the developed countries in just 5 short years. Most Americans do not know how people in, say South Korea are using their 45+ Mb/s - and it's not just gaming. Americans do not wonder why a typical household can get from 100 Mb/s to 1 Gb/s in Hong Kong, starting at $10.00 per month.

Why can't customers in the U.S. get speeds and prices like that here, the greatest technological and innovative country in the world.

Now that's an interesting question, and an article for some objective journalistic entity.

The negative affect of the U.S. monopolistic and duopolisitic approach to our bandwidth infrastructure is tremendous, and out global competition speak of it daily. We are being economically hamstrung by poor bandwidth infrastructure, our ability to participate more aggressively in global markets and supply chains, and therefore not experincing the resulting creation of regional wealth.

And worse of all, articles such as yours keep Americans' expectations low, and, therefore, they do not demand the better services and products being delivered over the IP infrastructure to the rest of the developed world.

I have to ask, who paid for the Jupiter Research quote? Verizon, who are not trying to cut back on EvDo usage by customers who are using - not abusing - the EvDo IP capabilities?

Ther is one simple story here, if you have the guts to report it: why don't the U.S. telephone and cable companies build bandwidth infrastructure which will give America a competitive edge? Why are they continually building up more PUSH in their networks, leveraging old technology, instead of building symmetrical networks, like the 100 Mb/s ethernet network you have in your home or office?

Maybe, once the GAO begins and completes their study on where $200 billion of U.S. tax payer dollars to the telephone companies went over the past 20 years (with the promise to build a 45Mb/s fiber optic network to the home for U.S. citizens), CNet will have something real to report on.

&gt;&gt;tbs&lt;&lt;
Posted by TheoBaby2006 (4 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Even worse
Dropping to 13th may not be accurate either. The reporting method allowed by the gov't is not nearly accurate.

Recently it was brought to light that broadband carriers would report entire zip codes as having broadband even though there we large sections inside that zip code that were not serviced.

Your numbers may be updated to reflect that, but if not, we are probably no where near 13th. Sad is it not?
Posted by schubb (202 comments )
Link Flag
Applause!!!
Finally! Someone who uses the brain to THINK!!!
Posted by sgt1035 (27 comments )
Link Flag
Applause!!!
Finally! Someone who uses the brain to THINK!!!
Posted by sgt1035 (27 comments )
Link Flag
Applause!!!
Finally! Someone who uses the brain to THINK!!!
Posted by sgt1035 (27 comments )
Link Flag
Applause!!!
Finally! Someone who uses the brain to THINK!!!
Posted by sgt1035 (27 comments )
Link Flag
Excellent commentary; AT&T FTTx happening though
Thanks for your comments, but I think you are missing some
details like from AT&#38;T in the IL/MO area that is happening now:

Fiber to the Premise (FTTP for new developments) and Fiber to
the Node (FTTN for targeted overbuilds) networks (jointly called
FTTx) facilitates the evolution of our Local Exchange Carrier
(LEC) to an IP-based provider that delivers superior voice, video,
and internet applications. By deploying the FTTx network within
the LEC, SBCs core offering will evolve from traditional voice to
a full suite of products (i.e., triple play = voice, video and data)
by 2007. Additional products such as video on demand and
video teleconferencing may be enabled on the FTTx network at
lower incremental costs. This infrastructure, with robust
bandwidth and the ability to more easily deploy new services as
market demands are revealed, lays the foundation by which the
company will gain differentiation from competitors.
Posted by libertyforall1776 (650 comments )
Link Flag
Not really
While I agree with many points you make, be careful of basing your assessment in other countries claimed performances.
First, in many (most) small countries the speed advertised is local loop. If you try to access to any content outside the region (and that's 99% of the content you want to access) and your performance drops to less than 1Mbps (sometimes much less) and with huge latencies that kill the experience. It is easy to sell you 1Gbps if that's only within a city.
Second, even locally, those speeds are rarely achieved.
Third, while there ARE some countries that offer decent speed, most others do not. I know. I'm paying U$S70/mo for a theoretical 1Mbps, but in reality my max download speed can rarely get over 256Kbps.
So there are other explanations for the US situation. Basically, in a big country where accesses need to be to locations thousands of miles away, obtaining the same performance is way more complex and expensive than in locations like South Korea.
Posted by Hernys (744 comments )
Link Flag
Who is this idiot? Overkill?!
Of course we want high speed access. China has it. We should be getting what we are paying for. In the beginning there was SprintION - 10MBps SDSL (that's the same speed both directions) with four digital phonelines for $150 a month, two phonelines for $125, one phoneline for $99 with ZERO downtime. This was in the late 90's. That was until the major telcos would not provide the support afforded by law and Sprint saw it easier to go out of business than fight. Since then it's been ADSL (since we would only want to download as per a major telco), severely slower speeds with higher costs. WHY?! They saw a bunch of suckers and we're still falling for it.

I have been with five different providers since and they are all in it for the fast buck and what traffic will allow. It's time they step and give us that $200B fibre network that they have been paid for.
Posted by farmerbob (7 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Who is this idiot? Overkill?!
Of course we want high speed access. China has it. We should be getting what we are paying for. In the beginning there was SprintION - 10MBps SDSL (that's the same speed both directions) with four digital phonelines for $150 a month, two phonelines for $125, one phoneline for $99 with ZERO downtime. This was in the late 90's. That was until the major telcos would not provide the support afforded by law and Sprint saw it easier to go out of business than fight. Since then it's been ADSL (since we would only want to download as per a major telco), severely slower speeds with higher costs. WHY?! They saw a bunch of suckers and we're still falling for it.

I have been with five different providers since and they are all in it for the fast buck and what traffic will allow. It's time they step and give us that $200B fibre network that they have been paid for.
Posted by farmerbob (7 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Summing up a few things
I read with interest the replies to this article. As usual, some people were right on the mark and some not so. Having been a webmaster since the Web was one month old, and having downloaded probably 200 gigs of material (most of it from Usenet) over the years, allow me to sum up a few things as I see it:

1. Regarding the comment, "Considering that thruput is usually less than 25% of the rated line speed due to overhead and sharing...", this depends on company and location. I've used Charter, Verizon and RoadRunner over the past three years, in California, Nevada and Florida, and all three were usually right at the max. RoadRunner recently jacked up its connection rate from 5 megs to 7 megs, so, by the numbers, I should be getting 875 Kbps, and that's exactly what I'm getting.

On the subject, one thing that hasn't been mentioned are the internal settings in a Windows system. Even WinXP didn't come out of the box optimized for broadband. There are a handful of internal settings that may -- or may not -- improve your performance. You might head over to www.speedguide.net and download their tweak file for the Windows system you're using. It won't hurt anything, and might help.

2. It also depends on what part of the Internet you're downloading from. Yes, I know it always come as a shock to hear, but the Web is only one part of the Internet. For example, over 100 gigs a day flows through the binaries section of Usenet, and a large amount is also passed via IRC and FTP. We won't even get into the whole P2P thing.

With every broadband service I've used over the past few years, all of them throttled the download speeds from Usenet, usually down to a quarter of the max speed. But, if you're really in a hurry, you just fire up four Usenet programs and download from all four at the same time, thereby attaining your max Kbps. No big deal. But if there's any question of throttling, the answer is, absolutely.

3. In my experience, all large ISPs throttle your upload speed. Haven't you ever noticed how long it takes to send an email with a large file attached? Haul out a 'DU Meter' type program and it's readily apparent. While my download speed (from the Web) with RoadRunner is around 875 Kbps, my upload speeds are around 45 when uploading to one of my sites via FTP.

As "thenet411" (where DO they dream up these names?) corrctly pointed out, "People who are bandwidth hogs like to run their own game servers, their own web sites, stream video and audio FROM their home computers...", and this is, indeed, a big part of the problem. If the ISPs throttled people's upload speeds even more, I'd have no problem with that. The Internet was designed, in part, on the assumption that home computers would remain just that; home computers, not turn into servers. And /certainly/ not turn into servers dealing with large files like videos. It's one thing to run a little web site from your home; quite another to allow everybody access to your horde of videos through the Web or P2P.

Back to the actual article, where the basic question is, "Do you really need it?", this really isn't any different than all the other stuff that's been foisted on a gullible public over the years. No, the average computer user doesn't need a faster broadband connection rate. No, the average user doesn't need 80 or 120 gigs of hard drive space. No, the average user doesn't need a meg or more of Ram. No, the average user doesn't need a faster CPU. No, the average user doesn't need a bigger monitor. And, for that matter, no, the average user doesn't need a new version of Windows.

I can't speak for Mac owners, though. For all I know, they need ALL of that stuff. :)
Posted by Joe Bolt (62 comments )
Reply Link Flag
look beyond it
The issue I have with this is that if provided with the bandwidth, the user's "home" connection could be used for a lot more than just downloading from usenet groups, etc. What about streaming online classes for schools, etc? People have to think beyond the "email mindset" of their Broadband connection for end users and look into what the possibilities are if they really wanted to invest in the back end to support a total media experience going forward. Issue is, they first look at it to see how MUCH money they can make off of it, then if it's absurd enough they move forward.
Posted by dbrawders (17 comments )
Link Flag
Summing up a few things
I read with interest the replies to this article. As usual, some people were right on the mark and some not so. Having been a webmaster since the Web was one month old, and having downloaded probably 200 gigs of material (most of it from Usenet) over the years, allow me to sum up a few things as I see it:

1. Regarding the comment, "Considering that thruput is usually less than 25% of the rated line speed due to overhead and sharing...", this depends on company and location. I've used Charter, Verizon and RoadRunner over the past three years, in California, Nevada and Florida, and all three were usually right at the max. RoadRunner recently jacked up its connection rate from 5 megs to 7 megs, so, by the numbers, I should be getting 875 Kbps, and that's exactly what I'm getting.

On the subject, one thing that hasn't been mentioned are the internal settings in a Windows system. Even WinXP didn't come out of the box optimized for broadband. There are a handful of internal settings that may -- or may not -- improve your performance. You might head over to www.speedguide.net and download their tweak file for the Windows system you're using. It won't hurt anything, and might help.

2. It also depends on what part of the Internet you're downloading from. Yes, I know it always come as a shock to hear, but the Web is only one part of the Internet. For example, over 100 gigs a day flows through the binaries section of Usenet, and a large amount is also passed via IRC and FTP. We won't even get into the whole P2P thing.

With every broadband service I've used over the past few years, all of them throttled the download speeds from Usenet, usually down to a quarter of the max speed. But, if you're really in a hurry, you just fire up four Usenet programs and download from all four at the same time, thereby attaining your max Kbps. No big deal. But if there's any question of throttling, the answer is, absolutely.

3. In my experience, all large ISPs throttle your upload speed. Haven't you ever noticed how long it takes to send an email with a large file attached? Haul out a 'DU Meter' type program and it's readily apparent. While my download speed (from the Web) with RoadRunner is around 875 Kbps, my upload speeds are around 45 when uploading to one of my sites via FTP.

As "thenet411" (where DO they dream up these names?) corrctly pointed out, "People who are bandwidth hogs like to run their own game servers, their own web sites, stream video and audio FROM their home computers...", and this is, indeed, a big part of the problem. If the ISPs throttled people's upload speeds even more, I'd have no problem with that. The Internet was designed, in part, on the assumption that home computers would remain just that; home computers, not turn into servers. And /certainly/ not turn into servers dealing with large files like videos. It's one thing to run a little web site from your home; quite another to allow everybody access to your horde of videos through the Web or P2P.

Back to the actual article, where the basic question is, "Do you really need it?", this really isn't any different than all the other stuff that's been foisted on a gullible public over the years. No, the average computer user doesn't need a faster broadband connection rate. No, the average user doesn't need 80 or 120 gigs of hard drive space. No, the average user doesn't need a meg or more of Ram. No, the average user doesn't need a faster CPU. No, the average user doesn't need a bigger monitor. And, for that matter, no, the average user doesn't need a new version of Windows.

I can't speak for Mac owners, though. For all I know, they need ALL of that stuff. :)
Posted by Joe Bolt (62 comments )
Reply Link Flag
look beyond it
The issue I have with this is that if provided with the bandwidth, the user's "home" connection could be used for a lot more than just downloading from usenet groups, etc. What about streaming online classes for schools, etc? People have to think beyond the "email mindset" of their Broadband connection for end users and look into what the possibilities are if they really wanted to invest in the back end to support a total media experience going forward. Issue is, they first look at it to see how MUCH money they can make off of it, then if it's absurd enough they move forward.
Posted by dbrawders (17 comments )
Link Flag
proponents of 200mbps SYMMETRICAL HI-SPEED BROADBAND over Power Lines
Current Comm. BPL is same upload/download speed currently at around 3-5mbps and planning for 10Mbps upload/download at cheaper price than Fiberoptic(FiOS) service &gt;&gt;&gt;&gt;&gt;

read more:


<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://broadbandoverpowerlines.blogspot.com/" target="_newWindow">http://broadbandoverpowerlines.blogspot.com/</a>
---

Philippines: ELECTRIC CO-OPERATIVES are getting serious on rolling out 200 Mbps BROADBAND over Power Lines technology Nationwide !!!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006
Posted by 200mbpsBPL (102 comments )
Reply Link Flag
BPL and its caveats
The problem with BPL is that it majorly interferes with pre-existing and borderline critical services such as HAM. This issue has been extensively discussed and debated over at www.broadbandreports.com, so I'm not going to go into major details here.

I agree that evolution of broadband is important (at least in the United States), but evolution should not hinder something as important as HAM. Radio interference is *bad*, and shouldn't be accepted.

The attitude of monopo^H^H^H^H^H^Hcompanies deploying the BPL differs greatly in the United States. Some (most) simply do not care about the problem, claiming it does not exist -- despite audio and video files made public showing that BPL testing areas *are* interfering with HAM. Others are working with HAM operators to ensure no interference occurs (by using a different frequency spectrum than what was originally planned), which makes everyone happy.

Bottom line is this: I realise us United States folks want "faster speeds" for less money, but destroying HAM to get it isn't the way to go.
Posted by katamari (310 comments )
Link Flag
WOW!!!!
That site has almost as many grammatical errors as your own post.
Hmmm&.
Posted by DeusExMachina (516 comments )
Link Flag
proponents of 200mbps SYMMETRICAL HI-SPEED BROADBAND over Power Lines
Current Comm. BPL is same upload/download speed currently at around 3-5mbps and planning for 10Mbps upload/download at cheaper price than Fiberoptic(FiOS) service &gt;&gt;&gt;&gt;&gt;

read more:


<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://broadbandoverpowerlines.blogspot.com/" target="_newWindow">http://broadbandoverpowerlines.blogspot.com/</a>
---

Philippines: ELECTRIC CO-OPERATIVES are getting serious on rolling out 200 Mbps BROADBAND over Power Lines technology Nationwide !!!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006
Posted by 200mbpsBPL (102 comments )
Reply Link Flag
BPL and its caveats
The problem with BPL is that it majorly interferes with pre-existing and borderline critical services such as HAM. This issue has been extensively discussed and debated over at www.broadbandreports.com, so I'm not going to go into major details here.

I agree that evolution of broadband is important (at least in the United States), but evolution should not hinder something as important as HAM. Radio interference is *bad*, and shouldn't be accepted.

The attitude of monopo^H^H^H^H^H^Hcompanies deploying the BPL differs greatly in the United States. Some (most) simply do not care about the problem, claiming it does not exist -- despite audio and video files made public showing that BPL testing areas *are* interfering with HAM. Others are working with HAM operators to ensure no interference occurs (by using a different frequency spectrum than what was originally planned), which makes everyone happy.

Bottom line is this: I realise us United States folks want "faster speeds" for less money, but destroying HAM to get it isn't the way to go.
Posted by katamari (310 comments )
Link Flag
WOW!!!!
That site has almost as many grammatical errors as your own post.
Hmmm&.
Posted by DeusExMachina (516 comments )
Link Flag
Sounds like an article
written by the telecoms who dont want to spend any money to upgrade... well their argument is bull because other countries are ahead... and the US is just loading bullets into its russian roullette gun by allowing companies to push short term profit ahead of whats best for the country.

Anyways... dont sell something you cant deliver... if i pay for something i should get it as promised (within reason anyways)
Posted by volterwd (466 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Sounds like an article
written by the telecoms who dont want to spend any money to upgrade... well their argument is bull because other countries are ahead... and the US is just loading bullets into its russian roullette gun by allowing companies to push short term profit ahead of whats best for the country.

Anyways... dont sell something you cant deliver... if i pay for something i should get it as promised (within reason anyways)
Posted by volterwd (466 comments )
Reply Link Flag
WOOHOO! Go, Elliott Spitzer...
New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer says he wants to be a champion for the Internet.


"While New York has a vast transportation infrastructure to move people and goods, we don't have the broadband infrastructure to move ideas and information. If you're a kid growing up in South Korea, your Internet access is ten times faster at half the price than a kid growing up in the South Bronx. New Yorkers are at a competitive disadvantage that is simply unacceptable."

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.danablankenhorn.com/2006/05/a_champion_for_.html#more" target="_newWindow">http://www.danablankenhorn.com/2006/05/a_champion_for_.html#more</a>
Posted by ordaj (338 comments )
Reply Link Flag
WOOHOO! Go, Elliott Spitzer...
New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer says he wants to be a champion for the Internet.


"While New York has a vast transportation infrastructure to move people and goods, we don't have the broadband infrastructure to move ideas and information. If you're a kid growing up in South Korea, your Internet access is ten times faster at half the price than a kid growing up in the South Bronx. New Yorkers are at a competitive disadvantage that is simply unacceptable."

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.danablankenhorn.com/2006/05/a_champion_for_.html#more" target="_newWindow">http://www.danablankenhorn.com/2006/05/a_champion_for_.html#more</a>
Posted by ordaj (338 comments )
Reply Link Flag
an insanely stupid contention!
This is not fact-based journalism; it is simply hyperventilating nonsense! More speed is always better; why else would networks have progressed to 10Gbs backbones from less than 1Gbs 10 years ago; why is the default LAN connection now 100 mbs and on its way to 1 gbs; why are there so much/many more broadband usages/apps in South Korea, where 100 mbs residential broadband connections are commonplace.

I don't have time for a detailed, thorough fisking of this drivel, but suggest that the author do his/her homework before writing. But that's probably not gonna happen, because homework is "work" which is anathema to lazy journalists.
Posted by jwm4atl (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Telcos LOVE idiots like you
You just keep right on paying for the fastest connection you can get your little hands on. I love idiots like you too. You subsidize my necessary high speed access by paying for bandwidth you more than likely never use. Thanks. I will add you to my Xmas card list.
Posted by thenet411 (415 comments )
Link Flag
I Disagree
More speed is better in MANY APPLICATIONS. But I can say that I use my broadband connectivity a lot, and could easily live with Verizon's 768kb down speeds. Unfortunately, I can't get it and naturally, Comcast doesn't offered a tiered service because they have no incentive to do so.

I don't need several megabits per second down. I simply don't need it. Not everybody's steaming video on an hourly basis.

Yea, some people do, and for those people the higher speed access is great and they should be able to go for it.

For me, if a 768kb service is ever available for less, I'll dump Comcast in a heartbeat.

Charles R. Whealton
chuck whealton @ don'tspam.net
Posted by chuck_whealton (521 comments )
Link Flag
Yep
&gt; This is not fact-based journalism; it is simply
&gt; hyperventilating nonsense!

Uhhh... Is there such a thing as newspaper that writes articles based on facts? Didn't those go
out of style at 25 years ago?
Posted by X99 (37 comments )
Link Flag
Yep
&gt; This is not fact-based journalism; it is simply
&gt; hyperventilating nonsense!

Uhhh... Is there such a thing as a newspaper that writes articles based on facts? Didn't those go
out of style about 25 years ago?
Posted by X99 (37 comments )
Link Flag
correction
You should do YOUR homework.
Verizon doesn't deal with LANs. Their networks are for WANs -- large geographic areas such as cities, and multiple cities (or metropolitans) are MANs. These guys typically have a backbone of less than 2Mbps if I'm not mistaken. Remember, the internet was built on old telephone systems.
Posted by onux (5 comments )
Link Flag
an insanely stupid contention!
This is not fact-based journalism; it is simply hyperventilating nonsense! More speed is always better; why else would networks have progressed to 10Gbs backbones from less than 1Gbs 10 years ago; why is the default LAN connection now 100 mbs and on its way to 1 gbs; why are there so much/many more broadband usages/apps in South Korea, where 100 mbs residential broadband connections are commonplace.

I don't have time for a detailed, thorough fisking of this drivel, but suggest that the author do his/her homework before writing. But that's probably not gonna happen, because homework is "work" which is anathema to lazy journalists.
Posted by jwm4atl (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Telcos LOVE idiots like you
You just keep right on paying for the fastest connection you can get your little hands on. I love idiots like you too. You subsidize my necessary high speed access by paying for bandwidth you more than likely never use. Thanks. I will add you to my Xmas card list.
Posted by thenet411 (415 comments )
Link Flag
I Disagree
More speed is better in MANY APPLICATIONS. But I can say that I use my broadband connectivity a lot, and could easily live with Verizon's 768kb down speeds. Unfortunately, I can't get it and naturally, Comcast doesn't offered a tiered service because they have no incentive to do so.

I don't need several megabits per second down. I simply don't need it. Not everybody's steaming video on an hourly basis.

Yea, some people do, and for those people the higher speed access is great and they should be able to go for it.

For me, if a 768kb service is ever available for less, I'll dump Comcast in a heartbeat.

Charles R. Whealton
chuck whealton @ don'tspam.net
Posted by chuck_whealton (521 comments )
Link Flag
Yep
&gt; This is not fact-based journalism; it is simply
&gt; hyperventilating nonsense!

Uhhh... Is there such a thing as newspaper that writes articles based on facts? Didn't those go
out of style at 25 years ago?
Posted by X99 (37 comments )
Link Flag
Yep
&gt; This is not fact-based journalism; it is simply
&gt; hyperventilating nonsense!

Uhhh... Is there such a thing as a newspaper that writes articles based on facts? Didn't those go
out of style about 25 years ago?
Posted by X99 (37 comments )
Link Flag
correction
You should do YOUR homework.
Verizon doesn't deal with LANs. Their networks are for WANs -- large geographic areas such as cities, and multiple cities (or metropolitans) are MANs. These guys typically have a backbone of less than 2Mbps if I'm not mistaken. Remember, the internet was built on old telephone systems.
Posted by onux (5 comments )
Link Flag
Did Schommer really say that???
&gt;64Kbps of RAM on their PCs

Either he's confusing speed with capacity (and bits with bytes),
or this is a misquote.
Posted by Jackson Cracker (272 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Did Schommer really say that???
&gt;64Kbps of RAM on their PCs

Either he's confusing speed with capacity (and bits with bytes),
or this is a misquote.
Posted by Jackson Cracker (272 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Give me reliability!!!
<i>Cable operators and phone companies also justify boosting speeds (and sometimes prices) by pointing to all the new multimedia applications people are using. They say their customers need more bandwidth to listen to music, watch videos and play games on the Internet.</i>


Uh, not in my experience for games. Final Fantasy XI works pretty well at slowish speeds, and my cable company's speed increases have not made any difference in gameplay. Reliability on the other hand is extremely important, and my cablemodem provider has been very poor at this. Not having a good constant connection gets one kicked off the FFXI server. This happens a great deal in my house. My service provider has run a new line from their outside service box to the house, we've put in a dedicated modem line off the first (very high quality) splitter for best signal strength, and I've replaced the modem, router, gave them a good battery UPS power system, and it's all still questionable at times. While they keep saying they used to have server problems those were fixed and can;t be causing this, I simply don't believe them. There's nothing else on my end to be wrong, and all my new equipment (different brands even) has the same problems as the old stuff, so I believe the old stuff to be in good condition.

FIOS is being installed in my town, but I don't know when they might get to my particular neighborhood, and I'm holding off switching to DSL until there's some news about this. I hope Verizon's reliability is better than my cable company's. Heck, I'll bali out on cable TV to FIOSTV or satellite just to stop giving my cable guys any money at all after all this crap, even though the TV service hasn't been a problem, other than that month they had my house completely disconnected from any cable whatsoever during the rediculously drawn-out repair process... (OK, it was only 19 days disconnected, but still, it's rediculous)
Posted by amigabill (93 comments )
Reply Link Flag
 

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