Obfuscatoriation Anti-gubment sentiment seems pretty common within Corporate America, so when prominent U.S. companies band together to practically beg for federal intervention, it tends to attract attention.
The Open Internet Coalition (OIC) is urging Congress to implement a national broadband policy that will lead to universal, affordable high-speed Internet access for all Americans. Over half a hundred companies signed the letter, among them Amazon.com, Earthlink, Google, Skype and TiVo.
Perhaps coincidentally, this group has a lot of overlap with the group of companies that have been agitating for net neutrality, in opposition to companies such as AT&T, Verizon and Comcast, who are trined over and over on the OIC website as if they were some kind of unholy cabal.
But who can argue against universal, affordable access? Not me. Well, I could, but just as an exercise – the argument would be pretty weak. Broadband availability should be wider, speeds should be faster, and service should be cheaper. But I digress.
This time, however, I’m not the only one. It seems the OIC is digressing itself when it comes to inexpensive, universal access. In fact, it seems a purposeful digression. The signatories are conflating high prices and lackluster competition with the issues in the net neutrality debate:
In its letter, the OIC says “America has seen nearly a decade of decline in its world standing in broadband services largely because of an uncompetitive marketplace-with monopolies and barriers to entry written into the law,” the letter reads. “In part, this is because we lack a comprehensive policy to address the digital divide, ensure the free flow of content, and promote the development of ubiquitous, high-speed Internet access at affordable prices… We are reaching a tipping point where legislation is no longer simply welcome-it is imperative.”
The OIC is proposing three key elements: 1) universal, affordable Internet access; 2) an open Internet, or “network neutrality”; and 3) quality through competition. See how they sneak net neutrality into the relatively obscure middle slot?
Kind of sneaky. Somebody ought to mention the issues 1 & 3 are separate from issue 2. Er, that is to say, somebody the gubment might pay attention to.
Brian Santo, IP Capsule Editor & CED Magazine Editor
HP, Cisco build FTTH net in Denmark HP partnered with Cisco to build a high-speed, fiber-to-the-home network for the delivery of video, data, voice and gradually other services for MidtVest Bredbaand (MVB) in Denmark.
The Ethernet-based point to point fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) network delivers bandwidth of up to 100 megabits per second. The network uses the Cisco 7600 Series Routers and Cisco Catalyst 4500 E-FTTH switch to provide fiber access to the MPLS core network. The network data center runs on the HP BladeSystem with HP StorageWorks EVA SAN arrays and Cisco MDS9216i Multilayer Fabric Switches supporting fiber channel over IP. HP also contributed operations support systems (OSS) management software.
MVB claims more than 200,000 customers. Future services could include high-definition TV programming, storage on demand, and remote back-up and restoration of data.
Free buys Ateme video encoders for IPTV Ateme said it received an order for video encoders from Free for the latter’s IPTV service. Free is an alternative ADSL operator in France, with more than 2,498,000 subscribes as of March 31, 2007. Free is buying additional bandwidth by employing Ateme’s new Kyrion MPEG-4 AVC SD video encoders, which provide 18 standard definition television channels at a bit rate of 1.7 Mbps.
Ateme’s Kyrion encoder
Frost also expects the IPTV market to grow big
The North American IPTV services market earned revenues of $423 million in 2006 and is estimated to grow to $12 billion in 2013, according to a new report titled “IPTV-Personalizing Television: North American IPTV Services Market” from Frost & Sullivan.
Generally, telecom operators are the new entrants in the market, attempting to shift customers away from incumbents with a differentiated offering.
“As a result, IPTV deployment is not always easy; in addition, there have been delays associated with set-top boxes and potential customers become disenchanted if announced services are not delivered,” explained Frost & Sullivan senior analyst Lynda Starr. “There may also be capacity issues with the set-top boxes that do not have enough storage space for on-demand and DVR programming.”
However, the desire for customization, along with value pricing and competition among providers, are expecting to spur the market for IPTV-based services. There is a significant demand for niche, older programming and educational programming. Programs from other countries are also attractive, for which consumers will pay. In turn, the service providers are likely to either charge subscription/viewing fees or sell targeted advertising, which will defray network deployment costs. Thus, IPTV offers consumers savings over cable services, which boosts demand, the report concludes.
The U-verse now includes parts of Michigan AT&T has launched U-verse in the Detroit area, with service available in isolated pockets of more than 50 communities in the Detroit-Warren-Livonia metropolitan statistical area (MSA). AT&T is also making U-verse available in parts of the Ann Arbor metropolitan statistical area (MSA), including Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti. AT&T said it will continue to increase availability throughout the areas on an ongoing basis.
Wave7, SA, Nortel, Genband in on indie FTTP install
Midwest independent phone company Long Lines is going to upgrade to fiber-to-the-premise (FTTP), with equipment supplied by Wave7 Optics and Embarq Logistics. Long Lines serves more than 100 communities in Iowa, Nebraska and South Dakota. Its first FTTP installation will be in South Sioux City, Neb.
TI chip at the heart of IPTV box for China Texas Instruments and National Source Coding Audio & Video Technologies (Beijing) Co., Ltd. (NSCC) announced an IPTV set-top box (STB) that relies on a single chip that performs dual decoding of both AVS and H.264. AVS is the standard China has settled on for digital television transmission.
Taqua declares its independence
Spinning off completely from former parent GenBand, Taqua has completed a management buy-out and has renewed its focus on next-generation end-office switching solutions for wireline, cable, and wireless service providers.
Taqua was established in 1998, was acquired by Tekelec in 2004, and purchased shortly thereafter by GenBand. The Taqua T7000 Switching System (T7000) is based on a patented “switch-on-a-card” design, in which all the function of a Class 5 switch or IP gateway are performed on a single circuit pack.
Nextone, Camiant ally on VoIP policy control Nextone and Camiant have combined the former’s session border control (SBC) technology with the latter’s policy servers to facilitate policy-based control of SIP-based VoIP services in cable networks.
Camiant said NexTone is providing the first SBC to interconnect with its Diameter-based Rx interface, defined in the PacketCable Multi Media (PCMM) 2.0 architecture. exTone’s real-time knowledge of the state of the session enables Camiant to apply appropriate policies on a subscriber’s traffic.
The two said their solution is in use by what they describe as a leading U.S.-based cable operator; they did not identify the operator.
Cisco to buy BroadWare Technologies Cisco Systems is going to buy privately held BroadWare Technologies to expand its video surveillance equipment business. Cisco did not put a value on the deal. BroadWare’s software enables Web-based monitoring, management, recording and storage of audio and video that can be accessed anywhere by authorized users, Cisco said.
The two have signed a requirements contract to supply the next 500,000 Ka-band satellite terminals to be deployed by WildBlue on its WildBlue-1 and Anik F2 satellites. Together with units already delivered, the number of terminals supplied by ViaSat is expected to exceed 750,000.
Charter offers home wireless network Charter Communications Inc. is deploying its Charter Home Networking service nationwide. The service allows two or more computers to share a single Internet connection and communicate with one another. The offering gives consumers a wireless connectivity package—including installation, configuration, customer service and a security suite—for each networked computer.
Charter Home Networking can be added to the company’s high-speed Internet service for $9.99 per month, which includes the gateway, modem, hardware lease and support for up to five computers, the company said.