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Thursday, 7 May 2009

Virgin trials 200Mbps

Virgin bonds DOCSIS 3 lines together to get 200Mbps for 100 users in Ashford, Kent. BUT, no sign of symmetry and therefore how can you establish demand without testing what users may want it for?

Article on PC Pro This approach still fails to understand what many people _want_ to use their connection for - sharing, be it videos, music, video conferencing ie talking to their friends and family, or using innovative apps. Most of us are still unable to share any video longer than a couple of minutes or video conference because the upload speed or capacity are just not available, especially for an enjoyable experience. People aren't doing it because they CAN'T. Not that they don't want to.

We keep seeing research saying that the majority of users are only emailing, surfing etc with a little multimedia thrown in on the side. Until users are able to start playing around on symmetrical connections (bear in mind we don't even have SDSL in this country), the apps that are likely to evolve from that availability, and hence consumer education about, and uptake of, such apps, will remain severely limited.

Look at SMS - that flies, and makes untold millions for the mobile operators because it allows users to COMMUNICATE easily. Two way comms with user generated content. All the mobile operators provide is the transit channel.

The first company to offer 100Mbps symmetrical deserves a prize for consumer awareness. In the meantime, the assumption that all consumers are still happy in the 20th century broadcast world remains flawed.

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