Industry think tank pretends US broadband is secretly awesome

When you're indisputably mediocre in nearly every broadband ranking due to limited competition and regulatory capture, what's a monopoly and/or duopoly broadband market to do? For much of the last decade the US broadband industry's answer to that question is to shell out millions to fauxcademics, astroturfers, paid think tankers and assorted hired flacks to argue that United States broadband is secretly awesome and you just didn't know it.

The tactic is far more successful than it should be, thanks to a press that often...

By BroadbandNation, 22 March 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Government, N America.

More bandwidth sounds better, but keep the debate grounded in reality

Julie Kunstler, Principal Analyst, ComponentsOver the past several weeks, I have been analyzing future bandwidth needs for residential subscribers, and my conclusions are fuzzy at best. I was hoping for clarity from OSA’s Executive Forum panel, The Future of Broadband Access Networks: Towards 1Gbps and Beyond, which took place on Monday March 18 in parallel with OFC/NFOEC. Panelists included Milo Medin, VP of Google Access Services; Ed Harstead, Leader at the Technology Excellence Center and CTO of Alcatel-Lucent’s Fixed Networks...

By Ovum Research, 20 March 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Content, Fiber Optic, Networks.

The monopoly magnate: One battle won...

As some of you may know, US incumbents and cable operators have been lobbying fiercely in the last few years to forbid local governments by law of investing in broadband infrastructure. This morning, one such bill which was to be voted by the Georgia legislature was repealed. I wanted to publish the comic strip that the opponents to the bill have been circulating, because I find it marvellous and sadly closer to reality than...

By Benoît FELTEN, 11 March 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Infrastructure, N America.

Why FTTH is about advancing economic development

The global wired broadband market -- including DSL, cable, and fiber-optic services -- generated $188 billion service revenue in 2012, that's a 7 percent increase from 2011. According to the latest market study by ABI Research, fixed broadband service revenue will grow to $251 billion by 2018. Across the globe in 2012, fiber-optic broadband service revenue had its strongest year-over-year growth of 24 percent, while DSL and cable broadband grew 2 percent and 6 percent respectively. Fiber to the home (FTTH) is...

By David H. Deans, 21 February 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Fiber Optic, Wireless.

UK 4G auction results announced, revenue lower than expected

The UK telecommunications regulatory body Ofcom has announced the results of the 4G auction raising a less than expected £2.34bn ($3.59bn) in revenue.

The overall figures may be seen as disappointing given the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) had predicted a £3.5bn ($5.37bn) windfall from the auction. The UK 3G auctions in 2000 raised £22bn in comparison.

Yet the results show that the main players seem to have gotten a share of the spectrum, dealed out in 2.6 GHz and 800 MHz bands....

By James Bourne, 20 February 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Government, LTE.

New analyst data confirms 100G’s exploding growth

For the last six months I’ve been highlighting the fact that 100G has made the move to the mainstream with customer deployments.  Now some new insight from two very respected industry analyst firms sheds more light on this shift with some specific data.

In its just-released Optical Transport forecast, Dell’Oro Group pins the 100 Gbps market as the key to growth in the broader WDM market.  “We are finding that the demand for 100 Gbps...

By Ciena, 14 February 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Cabling, Wireless.

Don’t mistake free spectrum for free service

Daryl Schoolar, Principal Analyst, Network Infrastructure

A recent Washington Post article about the Federal Communications Commission’s goal of making parts of the 600MHz spectrum band available for use free of charge was written in a way that led some readers to believe that the FCC was proposing a nationwide free “super” Wi-Fi network. Diligent tech writers and bloggers quickly pointed out how the article was actually confusing several topics – FCC auction of 600MHz TV spectrum, allocation of more...

By Ovum Research, 13 February 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Networks, Operators, WiFi.

EU broadband budget slashed by 90 percent, plans in tatters

A budget reshuffle from the European Union has culminated in the European broadband budget being cut by 90%, from €9.2 billion (£7bn) to €1 billion (£859m) and leaving original broadband rollout plans in tatters.

The original plans were for every building in Europe to have access to a 30Mbps or faster connection by 2020, but they seem to have been kyboshed by this latest cut. The overall EU infrastructure investment budget has been slashed from €50bn to €24bn.

Neelie Kroes, digital agenda VP...

By James Bourne, 12 February 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Europe.

Operators: Learning from the past for 4G success

After going live across 11 major cities in the UK, 4G has had its fair share of praise and criticism. It undoubtedly brings with it the promise of increased demand for faster downloads and seamless streaming services, but that's kind of missing the point.

What do operators need to consider building the right 4G propositions and delivering them smoothly? Are there relevant learnings from the previous move from 2.5G to 3G?

With Everything Everywhere’s competitors getting ready to launch their respective...

By Rob Smith, 22 January 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Billing, Broadband, Networks, Operators.

Will TV Everywhere reverse the trend for Pay-TV?

U.S. broadband subscriptions are forecast to reach the same level as pay-TV subscriptions in 2016. Meanwhile, American cable and satellite TV service providers will soon reach a critical point in their evolution -- where future success will hinge on the adoption of their TV Everywhere services. "Based on our continuing analysis of TV Everywhere and over-the-top (OTT) services like Netflix, it’s clear that the U.S. pay-TV industry has reached a historic juncture," said Tom Adams, director and principal analyst at

By David H. Deans, 22 January 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, IPTV, N America, Smart TV.

Tipping point: Four indicators your ageing network needs a makeover

Ian Pepper is Ciena’s Senior Director for Regional Professionals Services, and leads Ciena’s Network Transformation Solutions efforts in EMEA.

Today’s service provider model is being squeezed from all sides. Providers are seeing rising costs in areas such as energy and rack space, customers are rapidly shifting to evermore bandwidth-hungry services, and the current unprecedented global economic...

By Ciena, 08 January 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Networks, Operators.

Ofcom looks into mid-contract mobile and broadband price hikes

A consultation document released today by Ofcom has revealed plans allowing UK consumers to leave a phone and broadband contract freely if the provider introduces a mid-term price rise.

From the providers’ standpoint, this could seem harsh; however, this may come as welcome news to long-suffering consumers, with the telecommunications regulator examining the issue after 1,600 complaints in the eight months leading up to May 2012.

The news comes amidst O2 putting prices up on line rental – 3.2%...

By James Bourne, 03 January 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Consumers, Government, Mobile.

ITU talks end in failure as US, UK refuse to sign treaty

The two week International Telecommunications Union (ITU) world conference has ended with talks collapsing over the effective future governance of the Internet.

Having been hosted in Dubai for nearly 2000 delegates worldwide, the UN’s ITU World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) attempted to revise the International Telecommunication Regulations (ITRs) treaty, not amended since 1988. These regulations are, as one would expect, somewhat...

By James Bourne, 14 December 2012, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Government, Industry, Operators.

Evolution of the internet model does not need ITU intervention at this time

James Robinson, Associate Analyst, Regulation & Policy, Ovum

During December 2012, International Telecommunications Union (ITU) member states are meeting to debate the future regulation of the Internet. Members are discussing proposals by the ITU to amend the International Telecommunications Regulations (ITRs), which have provided rules for global telecoms for over two decades.

The ITU feels that the existing regulatory framework is ill-equipped to deal with the challenges stemming from increasing data volumes and...

By Ovum Research, 12 December 2012, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Government, Industry, Operators.

Thailand is playing catch-up in auctioning spectrum for mobile broadband

By James Robinson, Associate Analyst, Regulation & Policy

A decade after most countries awarded 3G licenses at 2.1GHz, Thailand has finally taken its first steps to catch up with them, conducting its own auction of frequencies in this band.

In October 2012 the National Broadcasting and Telecoms Commission (NBTC) auctioned 45MHz of spectrum to three mobile operators. The auction raised only a fraction above the minimum price, and the Ministry of Finance has since issued a complaint to the National...

By Ovum Research, 26 November 2012, 0 comments. Categories: Asia, Broadband, Research.

Nearly 750m fixed broadband homes by 2017, says research

According to a new report from Digital TV Research, the number of fixed broadband households worldwide will hit 745 million by 2017 – up from the figure of 578m by the end of 2012.

Further, the research predicts that of the 167m additions, China will supply 73m and India 22m. Given 2010’s figure was 473m, this represents solid year-on-year growth.

By 2017, it is expected that China will have just over 250m fixed broadband households. The USA remains second on 100.9m, with Japan (40.6m), India...

By James Bourne, 23 November 2012, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Industry, Research.

How to fix broadband as a service

Martin Geddes is one of the smartest brains in the business, and a good friend. That doesn’t stop us from disagreeing on a number of things (business related), the chief one being the notion that internet in general and IP routing specifically are broken and need fixing. That being said, and while I’m open to hearing any well constructed argument – even those I think I’ll disagree with – I never understood the technology reasoning behind that...

By Benoît FELTEN, 20 November 2012, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Consumers, Industry.

Google Fiber is finally here, but will it be a success?

Google has started to install its Fiber TV and broadband service in Hanover Heights, Kansas City, KS, giving residents in the US state internet of up to 1 gigabit per second (Gbps).

The search giant has expressed its desire to be part of the internet service provider (ISP) business since 2010, and more than 1100 cities had wanted to be part of the new Fiber service. Eventually however, Google chose Kansas City, Kansas, and Kansas City, Missouri, to test-drive the system.

The service offers a variety of...

By James Bourne, 14 November 2012, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Fiber Optic, Google.

What are the latest broadband speed trends?

The UK suffers from a “massive discrepancy” in broadband speeds and should be aiming for the standards of Singapore where broadband speeds have doubled, according to a report.

A report from UK-based wireless comparison providers uSwitch.com has uncovered a ‘massive discrepancy’ between certain streets for broadband speed – and warns that the gap...

By James Bourne, 08 November 2012, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Infrastructure, Wireless.