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AT&T Claims Internet to Reach Capacity in 2010 239

Posted by timothy
from the calls-for-even-more-paper-towels dept.
An anonymous reader writes "CNET News has a piece in which AT&T claims that the Internet's bandwidth will be saturated by video-on-demand and such by 2010. Says the AT&T VP: 'In three years' time, 20 typical households will generate more traffic than the entire Internet today.' Similarly: 'He claimed that the "unprecedented new wave of broadband traffic" would increase 50-fold by 2015 and that AT&T is investing $19 billion to maintain its network and upgrade its backbone network.'"
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AT&T Claims Internet to Reach Capacity in 2010

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  • That quote... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by 26199 (577806) * on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:19PM (#23129922) Homepage

    ...is so obviously wrong that he's either a) been misquoted, b) an idiot or c) misquoting someone else. Given how impressive his title is I'd say that last one is most likely...

    As for the internet "reaching capacity"... that's a pretty meaningless thing to say. At the root of all this we get the actual "story": bandwidth use is likely to increase more quickly over the next few years than ever before.

    Is anyone really surprised? The fast links are starting to be there, so people are starting to figure out ways of using them that appeal to the masses. Exponential growth is not exactly a new concept in the computer industry...

    Still. Not a good time to be an ISP.

    • by colmore (56499) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:51PM (#23130138) Journal
      Oh no the massive profits the telecom industry has enjoyed with the explosion of the internet might at some point cause them to have to sink money into infrastructure? The horror!
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Romancer (19668)
        That is the sound of the smallest violin being transmitted in 6.1 ch dolby HD to every IP in america.

        Seriously though, didn't we just get the report that we are in the top percentage of internet ready nations? Doesn't that mean that we "can do it" before it reaches the "I can't give it any more captn' she'll blow" stage?
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by Idiomatick (976696)
          "top percentage of internet ready nations"

          I suppose if you count ALL the nations. But you guys are realllllly far behind what the super power should be doing. I think you are in 15th place atm out of 200 countries... thats not bad i guess... But being the biggest economy in the world you could afford to do better.
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by DilutedImage (769059)
        How would their "massive profits" be a cause of them needing to invest in their infrastructure? ;)
    • Re:That quote... (Score:5, Informative)

      by eihab (823648) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @06:10PM (#23130264)
      I liked this one:

      "In three years' time, 20 typical households will generate more traffic than the entire Internet today."
      I'll be waiting for my 1 Terabits per second connection any day now, and even then I don't think 20 households would generate more traffic than the infrastructure we have today.

      Given how impressive his title is I'd say that last one is most likely...
      From the article:

      Jim Cicconi, vice president of legislative affairs for AT&T
      Doesn't sound like a techie to me, of course he should know better and at least consult with someone before making absurd statements like this, but oh well, what do you say..
      • Give me the connection, I'll figure out how to use it. :)
        • With today's computers, I can't think of any way for a single household to usefully saturate a one terabit per second link. And I'm the guy who always calls people short sighted idiots for saying that X amount of bandwidth is "good enough". In order to even *generate* that traffic you'd need 1000 computers with gigabit ethernet and obscene routing hardware.

          For today, I'd be happy with a gigabit connection. I feel pretty safe in saying that I won't be needing any faster than that, personally, this year.

          • sell bandwidth to google and turn your basement into a server area?
      • I'll be waiting for my 1 Terabits per second connection any day now, and even then I don't think 20 households would generate more traffic than the infrastructure we have today.

        Well let's see, 720p requires 37 Mhz over the air, so let's call it 247 Mbps [netdish.com] and an assumption of a 10 room house is pretty generous for and average, times 20 houses with an HD camera in every room equals 49.3 Gbps. Well there it is folks we now have it on good authority, Jim Cicconi- vice president of legislative affairs for AT
      • Re:That quote... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by HeLLFiRe1151 (743468) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @07:25PM (#23130804)
        The title he has is just another name for a lobbyist. Start a myth, get other people to believe such a myth, then get congress to force people to give them more money to pay for the myth. Seems like a standard practice.
        • Re:That quote... (Score:5, Interesting)

          by eihab (823648) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @07:35PM (#23130846)

          Start a myth, get other people to believe such a myth, then get congress to force people to give them more money to pay for the myth
          From his BIO [att.com]:

          Mr. Cicconi also served in the White House under two presidents, including two years as deputy chief of staff to President George H.W. Bush and four years as a special assistant to President Ronald Reagan
          I'd say he has the experience for it :)
    • by gozu (541069) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @06:24PM (#23130398) Journal
      Oh my God! This is the best news I've heard in a long time! AT&T's top lawyer has just promised us 20 TBps residential internet in 3 years.

      I can hardly wait! Imagine how many BluRay porn discs we can download every second!

      I love you AT&T!
      • by homer_ca (144738)
        Very interesting considering the throughput of the fastest bus on desktop PCs (PCI Express x16) is 80 Mbps.
        • by gozu (541069)
          No it isn't. It's 32 Gbps actually.
        • by blantonl (784786)
          Today is not tomorrow.

          Computers ALSO evolve.
          • by homer_ca (144738)
            Even if people buy new motherboards every 2 years, how long did it take to switch system buses? How many have we had since ISA? I'll be generous and count Mac and server buses.

            ISA, EISA, Nubus, VLB, PCI, PCI-X, AGP, PCI Express. Better get cracking on that 20Tbps bus by 2010.
        • Re:THANK YOU AT&T!!! (Score:5, Informative)

          by gbjbaanb (229885) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @07:45PM (#23130902)
          FYI PCI-e 1.1 supports 250 MB/s (250 million bytes per second), so x16 gives you 4GB/s. Most network speeds are given in bits per second, so thats roughly enough for 32Gbps transfer.

          PCI-e 2.0 is double speed compared to PCI-e 1.1, you'll have it in newer mobos.

          Your HDD (if its a sata-2) will support 3 gbps (3 gigabits per second) transfer, though that's burst rate so you'll only get half that on average - 150MB/s, but you could put your drives in a RAID0 array to increase that.

          If you don't believe me, look it up on wikipedia. I promise I've not just gone there and changed the numbers.
        • by homer_ca (144738)
          Oops, hate when I get my prefixes wrong. Make that 80Gbps or 6.4MBps.
        • Thats not a problem, i'll just have to buld an extension on the back to hold my server array ... possibly a beowulf cluster or 10.... 20? ah hell i'll just throw in a few big blues to help out. The 7.2 million drives i'll need to be able to store downloads at that speed will be my REAL problem. Of course I can see the use for this BUT i doubt the average user can justify the several billion dollar expenditure to download 9000 HD movies per second. I'm sure people will be saying things like "Is it really nec
    • Re:That quote... (Score:4, Interesting)

      by _ph1ux_ (216706) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @07:20PM (#23130776)
      great points, Agreed.

      What I love is that I am watching the future unfold in technology that seems to be leading straight to the future we commonly depict in Anime...

      I just hope there is less of a totalitarian overlay than we seem to be headed for.

    • "We need more Government subsidies and tax breaks to build out more infrastructure (suckers)."
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:22PM (#23129934)
    Oh noes! The internet is going to dry up! Better start hording internet now, so that it can be used when it runs dry!
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by antek9 (305362)
      You name it. But indeed, there is a rather simple solution to VOD clogging up the fibre tubes: stop pushing those services to consumers. The internet is not a TV network, never was, it is a playground that should encourage _active_participation_ instead of passive consumerism. Push movie downloads into the channels that were made for yesterday's AV distribution, namely cable and satellites.

      There's no need to push this stuff onto iPhones and Laptops, so leave the internet for what it's best at: fast and co
      • by The End Of Days (1243248) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @06:12PM (#23130284)
        Please don't tell me what I want from the Internet, thank you.
      • by davetd02 (212006)
        Push movie downloads into the channels that were made for yesterday's AV distribution, namely cable and satellites.

        Last time I checked, most content providers weren't trying to encourage downloading of full-resolution movies. In fact, it seems that the phenomenon of movies being downloaded over the Internet far predates iTunes and can be blamed largely on people who go out of their way to illegally download movies. People want movies over the Internet, without any official encouragement. If it's not Pira
      • re: I disagree! (Score:4, Interesting)

        by King_TJ (85913) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @08:01PM (#23131042) Journal
        The Internet actually HAS served as an "alternate" TV network of sorts, ever since people first realized it was possible to stream video formats or do animation in a web browser window.

        While it's still a "playground" in many ways, sometimes, serving content that's meant to be passively enjoyed is part of the "fun". Not everybody gets (or even WANTS) the job of creating an animated series that runs on commercial television. But far more people DO get a kick out of creating animations and using the net as an inexpensive way to broadcast them. (What's the point in creating art of any kind, if nobody else is there to enjoy it afterwards?)

        By the same token, as technology advances, it only makes sense to consolidate things. Why run and maintain a whole mess of coaxial cable for cable TV, if you can just serve the content over the same connection that handles the regular Internet broadband? This is the future, and the only part that *doesn't* make much sense about it is all the artificial content restrictions the mass media still demands.

        (One of the BIGGEST advantages of consolidating network television as IP traffic on the net SHOULD be the flexibility in handling the traffic with whatever computer and software the end-user likes. No more need for dedicated hardware that's just a sub-set of what's in their desktop PC already, to do the decoding, display, and recording of programs.)

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by MrNaz (730548) *
        I, like you, sadly pine for the days of old when the Internet was used for activities that were intellectually stimulating, and bemoan the emergence of passive, mindless, consumerist culture on the once erudite Internet community. I remember hoping that as people joined the internet, their mental atrophy would reverse and they would begin learning and participating on a more socially constructive level. How naive and myopic of me to not see that mindlessness would simply follow them online.

        Government and bi
  • by nurb432 (527695) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:23PM (#23129942) Homepage Journal
    Since our end ISP's are throttling us now, i don't see things 'expanding' for most of us.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:25PM (#23129956)
    AT&T says the tubes of the intarwebs will be clogged with lolcats by 2010....
  • I'm still waiting (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mea_culpa (145339) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:26PM (#23129962)
    Where is my fiber to the curb? A lot of my tax dollars were freely handed to them to do it. A decade later and what do they have to show? A report the the tubes will be clogged in less than 2 years.
    I want congressional hearings, and heads on platters.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by c0nsole (1164167)
      It seems that they 'accidentally' ran it to my house instead... ;)
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by CRCulver (715279)
      I think it's ironic that fiber to your door is swiftly becoming more common among city dwellers in Romania than in the U.S.
      • by colmore (56499) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:55PM (#23130172) Journal
        It took an act of the whitehouse to get telephones and powerlines connected to everyone in the US. If they feel like they can make more money not installing fiber everywhere, then we won't be getting fiber any time soon.

        The funny thing is that after decades of "deregulation" we have less of a market economy than ever before. The largest businesses in the country (and this is especially true in telecom) hold their positions with a massive buttress of government contracts and protectionist legislation. Government regulation doesn't do half the damage to a market that government favor brokering does.
        • Re:I'm still waiting (Score:5, Interesting)

          by Z34107 (925136) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @06:39PM (#23130522)

          What would be nice is a law making it illegal for municipalities to grant the infamous "last mile" monopoles to telephone and cable companies.

          In my ideal little fantasy world, it would also be nice if we stopped obsessing over the "natural monopoly" aspects of line ownage. We'd have more infrastructure than we'd know what to do with if we let AT&T, Comcast, etc. each install their own lines rather than forcing them to share. (Granted, telephone poles having 6 or 7 different phone lines on them sounds redundant, but part of the capacity problem would be solved.)

          • by homer_ca (144738)
            The last mile monopoly is of the natural monopoly of running utility lines through public rights of way. There's no law against a cable company applying to a city government to lay cable for a second cable TV franchise, but it's rarely done because it tends to be uneconomic, both the cost side of duplicating work and the revenue side of splitting up the customer base.

            It's more telling that cable and telecom monopolies lobby so hard against city that want to add competition to the last mile, say through mun
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by mollymoo (202721) *
            But not the important part of the capacity problem, which is the backbone connections. We need cables across oceans and between cities before we think about the connection to the premises getting much faster. ADSL2+ will be fine for a while yet, though it really is pushing copper (and aluminium and lead - there's some crazy old shit still in use) to its limits. No point having 100Mbps to your house if every peering point and backbone link is so saturated you only actually get 3Mbps.
          • Nope sorry. The big guys would decide that they could charge more if they stopped competing with each other, and instead simply parceled out sections of the country amongst themselves.
      • by Hadlock (143607)
        I know that in large parts of Dallas you can get fiber to the door. Most all of Plano and Richardson have it available. Large portions of other suburbs of Dallas have it as well - probably closing in on 2 million people alone. Major urban centers are a little harder to do, as evidenced by King County in the 1990's; they found it very hard to run a continuous fiber optic link across certian highways. Suburbs are much easier, not as difficult as concrete, and you only have to run the fiber to the terminal box
    • by gozu (541069)
      I agree wholeheartedly, we've been screwed through and through. People need to go to jail for this.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by berwiki (989827)
      No kidding. I get sick to my stomach hearing these stories over and over and over. Why does every single big government project have to be so ridiculously wasteful and completely void of any repercussions?
  • Maybe this is all just an explanation of why they will raise their rates shortly, but the good news out of that is that they are investing in infrastructure. They are still looking for long term solutions to problems that are arising.
  • Three years, eh? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Ralph Spoilsport (673134) * on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:31PM (#23129982) Journal
    'In three years' time, 20 typical households will generate more traffic than the entire Internet today.'

    Sh'yeah - right Wally. 20 households eating up hundreds of millions of users worth of bandwidth, many many hundreds of thousands of which are already:
    a: bombing away on bittorrent
    b: watching youtube (reminds me - I need to watch last night's Bill Maher...)
    c: downloading eons of pr0n
    d: spamming the planet with adverts for C4iL1s and v14grA?

    Whatever he's smokin' - I want some. Now. It's been a long and pretty dorky day, I could use some massive hallucinogens.

    Give the horsey some sugar cubes. Aaaaah - look - it's all PAISLEY...

    RS

    • Sh'yeah - right Wally. 20 households eating up hundreds of millions of users worth of bandwidth
      I agree, that ridiculous. I can only guess that he's deliberately exaggerating. I mean, can you imagine how big the tubes would be coming out of those 20 houses!?
  • by zmollusc (763634) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:33PM (#23130010)
    I am heartened to hear that there will be enough quality content to saturate that amount of bandwidth.
    Or does he mean that the amount of spam and ad traffic will have grown to swamp teh intarweb?
    Or maybe Flash 74.2 will use 50 gajillion bytes/second to render static images on dilbert.com?
  • The Sky is Orange (Score:5, Insightful)

    by EEPROMS (889169) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:35PM (#23130028)
    This is a typical company FUD tactic especially when costs in reality are going down or are static (share holders don't like static income growth). In this case speeds on fibre have increased massively over the last ten years with data speeds going from cutting edge single digit gigabyte speeds to terrabyte speeds within a few years. Some may say equipment and maintenance costs have gone up but that is also FUD because fibre maintenance and distances between amplifiers has increased and over all equipment failure rates have dropped.
    • by thue (121682) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:42PM (#23130084) Homepage
      And in any case, they live by selling bandwidth. If the need for bandwidth increases explosively they should be happy as they can sell more.

      But for some reason they insist on casting a bonanza in demand for their primary product as a problem for them.
      • by Kjella (173770)

        But for some reason they insist on casting a bonanza in demand for their primary product as a problem for them.

        Also known as "People are starting to use what we've already sold them". I'm quite probably one of said bandwidth hogs, and I don't feel the least bit ashamed over it. Why? Because it's what you sold me, and thanks to decent consumer protection laws they haven't complained either. A resturant would never offer an "all-you-can-eat" buffet and complain that you're eating too much, they'd cut that out and only offer dishes instead. ISPs on the other hand would like to sell you an "all-you-can-eat" buffet of 5

    • by gozu (541069) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @06:19PM (#23130348) Journal
      Fiber is fiber is fiber. It's marginally more expensive to deploy 100 strands instead of one, and having ridiculous overcapacity. Not to mention all the dark fiber out there.

      The real cost of upgrades is simply faster switches to make sure switching between 0s and 1s is done as fast as possible, something that needs to be done all the time, by any internet provider and which SHOULD BE INCLUDED IN MAINTENANCE COSTS!

      ATT wants you to picture them rewiring the entire country with gold fiber, Monster cables or some other horseshit.

      I'm not going to bother commenting about the 20 families broadband usage. That's just meme fodder :)
      • by EEPROMS (889169)
        Fiber is fiber is fiber. It's marginally more expensive to deploy 100 strands instead of one,

        To some degree your comment is correct but fibre isnt fibre. There is a wide variety of different optical fibre from glass to plastic to all the weird doped variants that allows the Telco's to use less amplifiers on long connections.
        • by gozu (541069)
          Indeed. I remember a /. article on plastic fiber actually and I thought about that when writing my post but I didn't want to start rambling so I kept it simple and less accurate.

          Thanks for the follow up info!
  • The world is ending! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by qmaqdk (522323)
    What AT&T says will happen in three years time has already happened in Japan, where the average advertised broadband download speed is 93 mbit/s (http://www.websiteoptimization.com/bw/0711/). I don't seem to remember a lot of Japanese ISPs going bankrupt.

    I'm guessing they are crying wolf to get more money from the government.
  • i bet that quote... (Score:3, Informative)

    by kris.montpetit (1265946) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:35PM (#23130034)
    Is part of their/Comcast's previously mentioned and pathetically wrong argument against net neutrality by doomsday mongering about an exaflood [arstechnica.com] that, like Y2K, gigalapses, and marijuana, will be the end of civilization as we know it-unless we allow them to start throttling bandwidth and selling off top speeds to companies
  • Is there really that much smut out there?
  • Interesting... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jchawk (127686) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:39PM (#23130064) Homepage Journal
    It's interesting that the same people who sell you cable are complaining about video on demand over there data network...

    Conflict of interest maybe guys?
  • My cable connection sucks, because it is saturated!! They've already oversold their capacity and I am getting nowhere near the bandwidth I paid for.

    So really, wtf is this guy talking about?!
  • Corrections (Score:5, Insightful)

    by noidentity (188756) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:40PM (#23130076)

    In three years' time, 20 typical households will receive more traffic than the entire Internet today.'[...] [AT&T is investing $19 billion of taxpayer money it was given years back to maintain our network and upgrade our backbone network like they were supposed to do years ago.

    There, fixed that for you

  • by RalphBNumbers (655475) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:41PM (#23130080)
    AT&T's annual income was $118 billion in 2007.

    If they're only investing $19 billion over the next 2 years until 2010, that's 8% of their income they spend on maintaining and upgrading their network.
    And they make some pretty huge profits, even after all of their expenses ($11 billion in 2007)

    If they're only spending 8% of their money on network maintenance and upgrades, and raking in huge profits, while their network fails to keep up with demand (which, contrary to alarmist reports is multiplying more slowly than it used to [arstechnica.com]), then they need to spend more than 8%! Doing otherwise, when you run an essential utility, ought to be considered criminal negligence imho.
    • by Aranykai (1053846)
      Hell, I'll bet they pay more in taxes than 8%. Oh wait.. the government pays them money.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by puppis (1276054)

      AT&T's annual income was $118 billion in 2007. If they're only investing $19 billion over the next 2 years until 2010, that's 8% of their income they spend on maintaining and upgrading their network. And they make some pretty huge profits, even after all of their expenses ($11 billion in 2007) If they're only spending 8% of their money on network maintenance and upgrades, and raking in huge profits, while their network fails to keep up with demand (which, contrary to alarmist reports is multiplying more slowly than it used to [arstechnica.com]), then they need to spend more than 8%! Doing otherwise, when you run an essential utility, ought to be considered criminal negligence imho.

      You are misstating revenue as income (which generally means net-profits). AT&T had $118 billion in revenue in 2007 and $11 billion in profits. So $19 billion would be 172% of their profits, a little more than the 8% you calculate.

      • Your choice of terms may be more precise, but it seems to me that expressing an expense (network maintenance and upgrades) as a percentage of gross revenue is far more straightforward and useful a comparison than expressing it as a percentage of net profits (from which such expenses would have already been deducted).

        Also, you used only one years profits for your comparison, and there are still about two years until 2010 (more or less depending on when during the year they expect their network to become satu
  • by stox (131684) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:45PM (#23130110) Homepage
    It is time for the Telcos to deliver. The American taxpayer was bilked out of billions of dollars to subsidize broadband buildouts. The results, so far, have been unimpressive.
  • Then providers will have to use some of that dark fiber. Or upgrade their OC units at each end of the fiber. And upgrade routers. Oh, how will they ever cope?
  • I'm finally going to get to see the final boss of the internet!
  • "We would like to screw our customers some more and need changes in law to do so. Here is a doomsday prophecy you can use as an excuse to remove some of the regulations that currently stand in our way."
  • by Khashishi (775369) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @05:59PM (#23130196) Journal
    'In three years' time, 20 typical households will generate more traffic than the entire Internet today.' I don't know about the typical household, but personally I don't think I can watch that much porn.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by _KiTA_ (241027)

      'In three years' time, 20 typical households will generate more traffic than the entire Internet today.'
      I don't know about the typical household, but personally I don't think I can watch that much porn.

      You are being cynical, but you're quite right. In 3 years time, Vonage (and Vonage-alikes), Netflix, Amazon Unbox, TIVO, and AppleTV are going to change the average ISP user (currently a grandmother who reads her emails once a day) to something vastly more resource intensive.

      Given that AT&T, Comcast, et all have made a living based on overselling their networks for 20+ years, this is a really BIG problem.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by gozu (541069)
        VOIP consumes negligible bandwidth (8 KBps).

        The rest of the services you mentionned are correct. HiDef video is a bitch and will ultimately require 100Mbps connections to feel comfortable (2-6 simultaneous 1080p channels that are not overly compressed and spare capacity for interwebs) and it ought to scale up to 10Gbps residential by the time we're all dead to keep up with new demand and uses (continuous HD backups will happily eat up a few dozen Mbps for instance).

        You've heard it here first, folks! 10Gbps
  • In three years' time, 20 typical households will generate more traffic than the entire Internet today.

    That is without question the stupidest comment I've heard all week (anything belched forth from the White House excepted, of course.)
    • by rossz (67331)

      anything belched forth from any politician excepted, of course


      Fixed that for you.
  • Tech Support (Score:3, Interesting)

    by _KiTA_ (241027) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @06:12PM (#23130274) Homepage
    This is going to make tech support fun.

    "Sorry Ma'am, the reason your Kazaa isn't working is because the Internet is full. Please try again later after a few other people have logged out for the day." ... Having said that, I'm reminded of working at an ISP 3 years ago, and having our Wireless Broadband Network reach capacity a few times, and having to explain, well, that exact line, only without using the terms "full", "capacity", "bottleneck", or really giving any information out at all.

    Maybe that's not such a laughing matter after all...
    • by xaxa (988988)
      I remember having a really cheap (half the price of the next most expensive) ISP in the UK, sometimes in the evenings the phone line would be engaged. I had to just leave it autodialling until someone disconnected.
  • U.S. telecommunications giant AT&T has claimed that, without investment, the Internet's current network architecture will reach the limits of its capacity by 2010.

    - The question is, why would telecommunications/backbone providers and ISP's not keep the networks upgraded to keep pace with consumer demand. Could it be because there is not enough competition to give them an incentive to do so? You can bet that if competition was healthy, AT&T would not be saying any such thing, since U.S. network cap
  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @06:22PM (#23130380) Journal
    You know that an industry is in a sad, sad state when it is bitching about an increase in demand for its product. Particularly when that increase in demand is coupled with a decrease in cost to supply.

    If any of those slimy bastards try and insist that the free market is working, point them to this. When you can afford to get upset when your customers want more of your product, the idea that you are vulnerable to "competition" is a bad joke(yes, I know, the economics of overselling are part of this).

    Can you imagine any real industry doing this?
    General Motors: "OMG, the interstate highway system will cause your factories to explode due to excessive demand!"
    Hollywood: "We must not have more than 5 TV channels, or the demand for made-for-TV movies will overwhelm our studio capacity!"
    Pathetic.
  • Translated (Score:3, Insightful)

    by DynaSoar (714234) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @06:26PM (#23130424) Journal
    Death of the internet. Film at 11.

    We're going to raise prices, so we need to justify it ahead of time. We'll do that by telling you it's for your own benefit. And you'll believe us.

    WAR IS PEACE
    FREEDOM IS SLAVERY
    MORE EXPENSIVE IS CHEAPER. REALLY. HONEST.
    • No, I am not the brain specialist... YES! YES, I AM THE BRAIN SPECIALIST!

      "Will the REAL Doctor Pederman PLEASE report to Neurosurgery IMMEDIATELY!"

      RS

  • by FliesLikeABrick (943848) <ryan@u13.net> on Saturday April 19, 2008 @06:28PM (#23130428)
    Now lets listen to what NANOG has to say about this FUD.

    http://www.merit.edu/mail.archives/nanog/msg07568.html

    Especially this post in that thread: http://www.merit.edu/mail.archives/nanog/msg07603.html

    Among other things, they point out that AT&T's claims (about 20 homes)wouldn't be possible, even if 40gbit ethernet was deployed to every home.

    Simple math and common sense, plus any reasonable FUD-detector should make it clear what to make of these claims the AT&T VP is making.
  • by dotwaffle (610149) <slashdot@w a l s t er.org> on Saturday April 19, 2008 @07:17PM (#23130760) Homepage
    I am usually a UK net consumer. My mother is on ADSL2+ and gets a line speed of about 4.5Mbits, for which she can download from a typical European (read: EU, not UK) site at about 400kB/s. She pays £18/month, but could be paying £14/month if she was on standard ADSL.

    Friends in Loughborough, UK, get 20Mbit Cable. They download at 2Mbit/s from sites all over the UK and the Netherlands, including the occasionally P2P traffic.

    Two weeks ago, I was in San Francisco. Not only does DSL suck over there, cable isn't THAT much better, and the quality of service DROPS during busy periods. Speeds were often far below that of my mother's cheap connection, and I'm not just using public wi-fi, I tried on residential connections too. Mobile net sucked too - I don't think I saw a single 3G signal anywhere.

    I'm currently on a connection at Newark, NJ, and to be quite honest, it sucks here too. Sure, it's public wifi, but speeds of 10kB/s and below are substandard to say the least.

    What I'm getting at is - people complain about UK bandwidth... And they're mostly factually incorrect. I assumed the US were just whining as US (and other) geeks do. Personal experience tells me different... The US telecomms structure sucks - and the net sucks bigger. I can't believe I'm saying this but... Take a hint from the UK, from France, from the Netherlands... From SWEDEN! Fix your internet!
  • Hopefully some new alternatives to fiber optics and present day routers which would remove bottlenecks for faster video and so we don't have to order the evil cable tv.

    http://www.networkworld.com/community/?q=node/12501 [networkworld.com]

    http://techupdate.zdnet.com/techupdate/stories/main/0,14179,2913761,00.html [zdnet.com]
  • As Mark Twain Said (Score:3, Insightful)

    by YetAnotherBob (988800) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @08:08PM (#23131098)
    As Mark Twain said over 100 years ago, "Figures don't lie, but Liars sure figure."

    One more example of bad statistics used badly.
  • Here's something you can use to sort through the BS: The marketing departments at major corporations do lots of research. They poll focus groups, do surveys, and try in other ways to find out what the general public thinks and feels about their corporation. Then they carefully construct a marketing program to "correct" the negative impressions.

    This leads to a somewhat surrealistic situation; they advertise (in a negative way) what they're bad at. For example, WaMu is well known and reviled for their sub-su

    • Now - what is AT&T actually saying?

      That they charge too much for what they deliver, and want to charge more for even less in a few years.
  • by nerdonamotorcycle (710980) on Saturday April 19, 2008 @09:30PM (#23131624)
    Seriously, I've been hearing this as long as I've been on the 'net (early 1990s). It's been going around since Vint Cerf first hooked two computers together.

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