NBN to consider FTTN in regional areas

Article

NBN Co ponders rural reversal | The Australian

My Comments

With the NBN considering moving regional areas to Fibre-to-the-node technology, we need to be aware of other similar developments taking place in UK and Germany where similar technology is being deployed for next-generation networks.

Here, we need to know of any deployment mistakes that have been made in these countries and are at risk of being made here. This includes connections that have or are likely to impede operation of the technology as well as catering to the changing landscape that will affect these areas, which is a fact as a town expands and farmland is subdivided for multiple housing projects. It is also why the concept of adaptability is very important when working on a next-generation broadband infrastructure

In the same context, the concept of adaptability  is important as a way to allow customers to buy increased broadband which I would say is important for professionals working from home or if the concept of “fibre to the basement” / “fibre to the building” is to be realised for subsequent multi-tenancy developments that occur in the neighbourhood.

What we need to be sure of for a next-generation broadband service is a competitive highly-adaptive system that can suit the way neighbourhoods change.

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Some more Oxfordshire villages gain real broadband

Artilcle

Gigaclear announces next batch of Oxfordshire villages to get Gigabit | ThinkBroadband

From the horse’s mouth

Gigaclear

Rollout page – Otmoor

Press Release – Otmoor

My Comments

Gigaclear, whom I have featured on this Website, are working hard and fast on enabling more of the Oxfordshire villages for real broadband. Here, the Otmoor community which is the latest to be targeted with this technology is being set up with fibre-to-the-premises “next-generation broadband” technology.

Here, this community has its wetland and grasslands as its assets being a nature reserve, most likely being of touristic value in some way. But Gigaclear had put the broadband rollout on the map without government assistance and having this become the full symmetric broadband courtesy of the fibre-optic technology.

When I read the ThinkBroadband article, there was a comment about Gigaclear focusing their efforts on the small upmarket Oxfordshire villages rather than the “real” rural areas in the UK. But the “real” rural areas could approach Gigaclear to cover them by visiting this page and not “giving up” with them if they are turned down. There is still the issue of high-speed Internet being of importance for professionals working from home along with small businesses where online competitiveness is still valued.

Of course, a question that may be always raised with these broadband rollouts is catering to the larger properties be they estates with a large house and a handful of cottages or smaller houses or simply small or large farms that are colocated to the villages. Issues that may be raise include whether a fibre rollout may be extended to a cluster of neighbouring large properties or not.

Similarly, if Gigaclear “conquered” a larger area of Oxfordshire or a similar area, could they be seen to be in a position of influence by providing the high-speed broadband for that area?

At least the Gigaclear effort is taking place to make sure that rural communities, which are also being seen as urban outposts or venues for “tree-changes”, as viable locations for proper Internet service.

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Google Fiber to touch more US cities–a boost for American Internet market competition

Article – From the horse’s mouth

Google

Exploring New Cities For Google Fiber

My Comments

After its success with Kansas City, Provo and Austin, Google is planning to hit nine more US cities with their fibre-optic broadband service. Here, I see this as an attempt to bring competition to Internet service in these communities in a situation where competition is dwindling due to the pending merger between Comcast and Time Warner Cable.

Even though most of the city fathers representing these communities are behind these projects, usually to see their communities grow economically, there are issues with state and federal authorities who have frustrated competitive activity like municipal Wi-Fi deployments. This is typically to protect incumbent cable and telephony companies against competitive service, but it allows these companies to treat their customers as second-class citizens by redlining good services away from certain communities or simply providing poor-value service to their customers.

But something needs to be done to assure competition on the Internet-service front and this may involve the US Department Of Justice rather than the Federal Communications Commission. It may involve prohibition of uncompetitive mergers or overriding anti-competitive state requirements in order to make sure that third-party Internet service providers can operate in more communities. It may even require a repetition of the 1980s court action that took place to break up “Ma Bell” to assure competition. Once we see more of Google Fiber in action and other Silicon Valley Internet companies work towards providing end-to-end Internet service, it could open up the idea of competition to the US market.

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Action Stations in Provo Utah for Google Fiber

Article

Google Fiber Installs In Provo | Broadband News & DSL Reports

My Comments

The work at the coalface has begin for Google Fiber’s deployment in Provo, Utah. In early October, the signing up has begun but yesterday (Tuesday 12 November 2013 (Western Hemisphere)), the work has started on connecting the very customers to this fibre-to-the-premises service.

What I see of this is that the incumbent telephone company and the cable company servicing this town will be squirming because the duopoly that they enjoyed in this town is being lost as a fibre-optic residential Internet service is being rolled out/ This is with a tariff chart being a symmetrical 1 Gbps for US$70 / month, a TV service with this 1 Gbps service for US$50 / month extra and a free 5/1 Mbps service for the installation cost of US$30. It also means that Provo could become a startup and “work-from-home” town due to the 1Gbps upload speeds offered by Google Fiber.

There have to be steps taken to keep the lively competition on foot so that the cost and quality of Internet service doesn’t deteriorate in the towns where competing Internet service exists.

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100 Megabit bandwidth available at La Réunion

Article – French language

Bientôt un débit de 100 Mbit/s à la Réunion – DegroupNews.com

My Comments

La Réunion has raised the bar for Internet-service value through that Département Outre Mer which is located near Madagascar. The cost of Internet was previously a sore point in that island with some pretty high prices in the order of €50-€60 for full triple-play as I previously touched on.

But Zeop have raised the bar by providing a 100 Megabit bandwidth fibre-optic service to all of their customers. But a good question to raise is how much are the residents and businesses going to fork out for this service. This is an attempt to raise the bandwidth at one of these DOM territories to what is expected at France’s mainland.

France could work harder to make all of the Départements Outre Mer be “axis points” for many international telecommunications services links, whether as “on-ramps” for submarine cables or as satellite uplinks. The local governments could work harder to improve local infrastructure as well as attract startup business in these territories making the whole of France the “switched-on” country.

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The competitive next-generation Internet market in France heats up further courtesy of Google

Article – French language

La fibre optique de Google pourrait arriver en France – DegroupNews.com

My Comments

Flag of FranceAs regular readers of HomeNetworking01.info know, I have been keeping tabs on the highly-competitive Internet market in mainland France a.k.a. L’Héxagone where the call for a triple play service is €25-30 for at least 20Mbps ADSL Internet service, heaps of television channels and all-you-can-eat telephone calling anywhere in France. This also is the same country with Free offering a fibre-optic next-generation broadband service with dedicated 1Gb bandwidth for €30 in some of the major cities.

Now Google, who have set the cat amongst the pigeons in Kansas City and are about to do so in some other US cities like Provo, Utah by offering fibre-optic next-generation broadband Internet service, are pitching to this highly-competitive market as their first foray outside the USA.

They are setting up registered offices in both France and Ireland and are lodging paperwork with ARCEP (France’s telecommunications regulator) to become a legitimate operator in that market. Of course, there is still a fair bit of worry about American businesses encroaching on French territory as the country claws back its industrial self but this could raise the bar further when it comes to the provision of the next-generation broadband in this lively market.

For Google, it may also be the time for them to rattle other European markets that don’t have the same lively competition as France, such as Spain and Italy. As long as we see them light the fire for competitive next-generation broadband Internet in Europe, they could then be seen of value there.

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Free upgrades its fibre customers to Gigabit broadband

Articles

Map of France

France – where Gigabit fibre is a free upgrade courtesy of Free

French ISP Free upgrades fiber customers to gigabit broadband |CNET

French ISP Free offers fiber customers 1Gbps upgrade for no cost | PC World

From the horse’s mouth

Free

English-language press release (PDF)

My Comments

Again France is showing its true colours as a highly-competitive Internet service market. What with the “n-boxes” that yield very high capabilities including network-attached storage or Blu-Ray 3D players in the set-top boxes; along with all sorts of services offered by these providers for cost-effective prices as I have written about before here in this user guide.

Now the ante has been raised further by Free who had “lit the fire” for this highly-competitive Internet service. Here, they are upgrading their fibre customers to full Gigabit capacity at no extra cost. The setup even uses the concept of “switched fibre” where each subscriber gets their own dedicated Gigabit bandwidth rather than sharing the same bandwidth. This will apply to these customers who are using the highly-strung Freebox Révolution equipment.

It could lead to a situation where other Internet providers in France start to answer Free by offering similar capacities to the public. This could be a very interesting turn for most of France and lead to a European country that can be described as being ready for technologies like 4K UHDTV or “all-IP” TV distribution. Even Brussels will be looking on very keenly as France is seen as a model of a highly-competitive market.

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Explaining the benefit of next-generation broadband in a funny TV commercial

Article

A City Getting Google Fiber Explains How Awesome Google Fiber Is

Click here to view the video

Previous Coverage on HomeNetworking01.info

Real Internet Service Competition Arrives in Utah Courtesy Of Google Fiber

My Comments

Now that Google has started work on providing fibre-to-the-premises next-generation broadband service to Provo, Utah, the city fathers of that town have celebrated by preparing a commercial-length video to explain what this is all about.

Here, this clip uses the analogy of a large temporary swimming pool being filled with water. Firstly, the householder starts filling it with a regular garden hose but it takes a very long time. But a fire engine arrives and dumps a huge quantity of water in the pool and the pool is full enough for a family to start swimming.

The garden hose represents current-generation cable or DSL broadband service while the fire engine’s water supply represents Google Fiber or other next-generation broadband Internet service. The act of filling that swimming pool is similar to transferring content between your home network and a file server somewhere on the Internet such as downloading a video from Netflix or uploading a quantity of pictures to Facebook or Flickr.

This funny video can be used as a way to illustrate this concept when justifying the benefits of deploying larger bandwidth to your home or business network or rolling out any next-generation broadband Internet service.

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Real Internet-service competition arrives in Utah courtesy of Google Fiber

Article

Google Fiber now faces Comcast’s 250 Mbps offering in Provo – FierceTelecom

Comcast Offering 250 Mbps in Provo for $80 | Broadband DSL Reports

My Comments

The Internet press in the USA have lamented the lack of real competition for consumer fixed-line broadband services. This has come about with an incumbent telephony provider, typically a “Baby Bell”, offering the ADSL service along with one of the big cable-TV names like Comcast, Cox or Time-Warner Cable providing the cable-modem service for most markets.

Typically these companies have been given exclusive franchise to sell telephony or cable-TV to that particular market and these companies own the infrastructure to the customer’s home. Concepts like loop unbundling where a competing provider has direct access to the electrical infrastructure have been met with resistance in the American market.

Now Google Fiber have established their fibre-to-the-premises infrastructure in Provo, Utah by buying the iProvo network in that town and is starting to light up the service there. This has caused Comcast to be worried and had them offer packages like a 250Mbps pure-play Internet service for US$80 and double-play TV+105Mbps Internet services for US$70-100. The “Free Utopia” blog had quoted that the impending competition is good for the customer.

I also wonder whether the established “Baby Bell” telephone provider will raise the bar and offer attractive ADSL deals in response to the impending arrival of Google Fiber. Other issues that will be interesting to observe include whether the competition will also affect how Comcast behaves towards their customers such as customer-support issues and service-level agreements including Net Neutrality.

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What are the realities concerning the NBN and Foxtel

Article

NBN is good for business: Foxtel unpicks PM’s conspiracy theory | The Australian

My Comments

One of the comments that has been raised through this election campaign about the National Broadband Network was that it would hurt Foxtel’s traditional business model.

Foxtel, like Sky in the UK, are a pay-TV provider that has control over its own infrastructure, whether through access to satellites or the HFC-based cable network. This provides for “end-to-end” provisioning and management of the pay-TV service with a set-top box installed at each TV set serving as the service provider’s point-of-control in the customer’s home.

Compare this with the IPTV model that the NBN will facilitate and which is being encouraged with Google Fiber in Kansas City, USA, the French “triple-play” operators, and FetchTV and T-Box / BigPond Movies in Australia where these services are transmited using the same bandwidth and infrastructure as your Internet service.

Infact the Internet-driven model is becoming a reality for the pay-TV industry in may different ways.

For example, this model, coupled with the next-generation broadband services like the NBN could support the next-generation 4K ultra-high-definition TV technology which yields pictures that are sharper and more detailed than current-generation high-definition TV. In this case, it could come in handy with pay-TV’s “bread-and-butter” content which are the premium sports channels that carry live broadcasts of sporting events and a pay-TV provider could bring this content through to those of us who use 4K UHDTV technology without reinventing the wheel.

The IPTV model allows Foxtel, Comcast, Sky UK and others to compete in the crowded “content-on-demand” market when it comes to keeping their premium movie and TV-program services relevant. This is through offering a portable “content-on-demand” service with either streaming or downloading abilities and a large content library.

There is also the cost savings that the IPTV model could yield where the pay-TV provider doesn’t have to be sure they have access to cable and satellite infrastructure to distribute the pay-TV service. Similarly, they could benefit from the use of software as a point-of-control when “platform-based” devices like smart TVs, games consoles, tablets and the like are used or can implement the point of control in carrier-provided Internet-gateway devices. It also has opened up new directions for Foxtel such as the provision of the Play and Go IPTV services which are offered more cheaply than the traditional services that are based around a PVR set-top box associated with cable or satellite infrastructure.

To the same extent, it could also be more cost-effective to provision viewing endpoints with the pay-TV service through the use of the software which could open up the feasibility of including a household’s TVs and other devices in one subscription without the customer having to pay anything extra. In a similar way, a household doesn’t need extra infrastructure to gain access to pay-TV service because they use the existing Internet connection; as well as allowing some portability for pay-TV subscriptions.

What really has to happen is that pay-TV services have to evolve to the newer IP-based business models that NBN and other next-generation broadband services facilitate in order to keep themselves afloat. They can still offer their subscriptions and pay-per-view but use this technology to work a leaner, more capable and cost-effective service.

May the bull artists who seed doubt about the NBN harming Foxtel please cut the nonsense!

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