Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Report: DSL must make way for fiber

Many people fail to understand that the world's most predominant method to deliver residential broadband Internet access -- Digital Subscriber Line or DSL -- is an interim technology and not a viable long term option.

I and others have observed that as broadband bandwidth consumption increases, driven in large part by the proliferation of bandwidth intensive full motion video, DSL capacity will grow increasingly tight. Already there are reports that DSL users are straining the telco network, with users reporting their connection speeds declining or losing their connection altogether, often during night and evening hours.

Like the U.S., Europe and much of the world gets broadband access via DSL. Consultant Frost & Sullivan is out with a report warning Europe must wean itself off of DSL and migrate to fiber optic to the home (FTTH) which offers far greater carrying capacity than copper cable-based DSL.

2 comments:

Carol Anne Ogdin said...

DSL and fiber are not competing technologies. Consider DSL a language (e.g., the language that a computer uses to send/receive information over a communications channel), and fiber a medium (e.g., the channel over which information is transmitted and received).

To say "DSL must make way for fiber" is akin to saying, "English must make way for cellular phones."

DSL is currently offered over copper wire and fiber and microwave and other media.

Fred Pilot said...

Technically speaking you are correct, but the distinction is not critical in the context of the article cited since DSL is the primary means of providing broadband over copper cable.

The point of the article is copper-based DSL technology has its limits as an interim technology on the road to fiber to the home.

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