Thursday, May 10, 2007

150 Mbps download speeds

[Nairobi, Kenya]
WOW, DID somebody say 150 Megabit per second? Am I on Planet Earth? You betcha...courtesy of some amazing advances in cable modem technology, which always seems to blow DSL (via telephone company) out of the water. Too bad cable TV is not in these parts. Everything down here on the idiot box (oops, I mean TV!) comes in via satellite. Anyhow, check this out and be prepared to drool:

Comcast Corp. Chief Executive Brian Roberts dazzled a cable industry audience Tuesday, showing off for the first time in public new technology that enabled a data download speed of 150 megabits per second, or roughly 25 times faster than today's standard cable modems.

The cost of modems that would support the technology, called "channel bonding," is "not that dissimilar to modems today," he told The Associated Press after a demonstration at The Cable Show. It could be available "within less than a couple years," he said.

The new cable technology is crucial because the industry is competing with a speedy new offering called FiOS, a TV and Internet service that Verizon Communications Inc. is selling over a new fiber-optic network. The top speed currently available through FiOS is 50 megabits per second, but the network is already capable of providing 100 Mbps and the fiber lines offer nearly unlimited potential.

The technology, called DOCSIS 3.0, was developed by the cable industry's research arm, Cable Television Laboratories. Instead of using one TV channel to transmit data, it uses four...

...In the presentation, ARRIS Group Inc. chief executive Robert Stanzione downloaded a 30-second, 300-megabyte television commercial in a few seconds and watched it long before a standard modem worked through an estimated download time of 16 minutes.

Stanzione also downloaded the 32-volume Encyclopaedia Britannica 2007 and Merriam-Webster's visual dictionary in under four minutes, when it would have taken a standard modem three hours and 12 minutes.

"If you look at what just happened, 55 million words, 100,000 articles, more than 22,000 pictures, maps and more than 400 video clips," Roberts said. "The same download on dial-up would have taken two weeks..." {source}

Good lords, but those are some fast download speeds. Do you know how productive I could be if I had access to that kind of technology? And can you imagine the implications for Africa if her ISPs were able to offer said technology to her bandwidth-starved netizens?

Patience, Max, patience. :-)

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