Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Analyst calls it wrong: DOCSIS doesn't support U.S. policy to expand broadband access

This MSNBC item quotes from an analysis by Pike & Fisher:

The Silver Spring, Md.-based research house also predicts that DOCSIS 3.0 will garner a lot of support from government officials distributing funds from the economic stimulus package.

"Considering the massive bandwidth increases that will be enabled by upgrading DOCSIS 2.0 to 3.0, the government is likely to view DOCSIS 3.0 as a most feasible and affordable near-term solution to perceived bandwidth scarcities," says P&F Chief Analyst Tim McElgunn, who authored the report.

This analysis is fatally flawed and reflects a major misapprehension of U.S. government policy. That policy is to expand broadband access -- and not to subsidize efforts by cable cable operators to increase their throughput speeds.

The issue with cable providers isn't that their broadband throughput is lacking for current needs. Rather it's the limited footprints of their local access networks that were planned decades ago when they served as single purpose TV delivery platforms that are no longer revelevant to current build out of homes and businesses that could benefit from their IP-based advanced services including high speed Internet and VOIP (Voice over Internet Protocol).

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