ISP Review - The Future of Broadband

ISP Review looks at the possible future of broadband technologies

The Future of Broadband
By Mark 'Winter' Jackson : Dec 12th-2003 : Page 2 of 6

"The UK is lucky enough to have a comparatively competitive market of differing broadband technologies"

Sadly, much as Horley states, BT does not itself offer slower speed/lower price ADSL services, thus it’s left up to third party providers to design similar offers via non-BT (Datastream) methods.

At present the accessibility of Datastream is in question (high costs etc.), thus more accessible, yet faster than dialup, services may be unable to flourish and bridge that all important ‘affordability’ gap.

Whatever happens, many still believe that broadband can and will continue to get cheaper, if perhaps not radically so. Operators and ISPs would do well to introduce a more accessible option, which could be positioned between 56Kbps dialup and 512Kbps broadband, thus allowing those on a lower budget to switch.

The Technological Angle

The UK is lucky enough to have a comparatively competitive market of differing broadband technologies, which are subsequently offered through a wide selection of providers at variable price levels. The key technologies are individually listed below, along with what might replace them in the future:

xDSL (ADSL etc.)

Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) technology is fast becoming one of the most abundant forms of broadband Internet access. It’s unique ability to run off existing (copper wire / PSTN) telecoms infrastructure has made it both a cost effective and accessible choice for operators and customers alike.

Sadly the limits of existing ADSL connections are all too clear, with a theoretical maximum of 8Mbps. Indeed most out-of-city ISPs will only ever offer up to 2Mbps because coverage (reach) drops dramatically the faster you go. Note; higher speeds can be achieved by bonding several connections together.

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