Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Bandwidth....What Is It Good For, Absolutely Everything

Can we ever have too much bandwidth?

BusinessWeek has a neat story called More Bandwidth Than You Can Use/

The race to provide even bigger ones (data pipes) is intensifying among telecom and cable TV companies, as well as wireless network operators.

Some highlights:

Much as richer Web site graphics and music downloads idled millions of dial-up modems, the smart money is betting that future online video offerings—from high-definition TV and future iterations of YouTube-type video-sharing sites to sophisticated online gaming and video phone calls—will turn your average U.S. home into a 50Mbps bandwidth hog within three years.

-two or three people watching HDTV shows, playing music from the Internet, playing online games—the bandwidth demands are going to be gigantic

-Microsoft is adding Internet-based TV capability to its Xbox 360 Elite, and Sony will likely follow suit with its PlayStation 3. Thus equipped, households with a gamer or two will likely eat into their available bandwidth faster than others

Re: Interactive TV American Idol voting--Sure, it's easy to vote by phone or wireless text message. But the upstream bandwidth—which users need to upload data to the Internet rather than sucking it down—will be there to allow votes from the comfort of a remote control.

Re: Tivo/DVR users:--As you forward through the ads, you might see something that catches your eye and slow down to watch it. That's going to take more upstream capacity

There also will be a growing number of bandwidth-sipping devices around the house, which as yet aren't typically connected to the network. From heating and cooling systems to alarms and surveillance cameras, an increasing number of devices will be plugging into the network.

A couple I would like to include.

What about mobile phones and physical objects? Mobile phones will soon be tapping into the broadband connection at home. Physical objects with RFID tags and barcodes will soon be Internet accessable.

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