After broadband?

Now that we’ve cruised past 2 million broadband connections, I’m wondering what the speed demons will need next. Online gaming already needs more than 512Kbits/s to host a game, wireless LANs are operating at faster and faster speeds (keeping the pressure on the tethered connection to the network), media use online (whether legitimate a la iTunes or otherwise) will continue to increase (and we still haven’t really sorted video). And let’s not even talk about what needs to happen to upload speeds (I get 100Kbits/s on my connection at home, on a good day). Copper wires are going to take us so far. Large numbers of exchanges have been upgraded to take ADSL, some rural communities are using satellite (take a look at what they’re up to in Wedmore) but, pretty soon, the early adopters will be demanding the next level. I wonder if the telcos in the UK are provisioning for that now so that they don’t get caught on the hop when the next wave of capacity requirement comes in.

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