The Problem Of Building Broadband To Expected Capacity
from the there-will-always-be-new-demands dept
Broadband Reports is pointing out that Verizon is over capacity on their DSL offering in some parts of New York City, leading them to turn away potential customers. Verizon defends this decision by saying: "You can't wire everything for unlimited capacity. It's more effective to engineer capacity to be a fixed percentage above the average use in a given day." What this actually shows is that Verizon has done a terrible job of predicting capacity. When you engineer capacity to be a fixed percentage above average use of today's bandwidth, you're absolutely going to run into trouble. Anyone who's followed internet usage patterns over the years has known that usage always rises up towards capacity. Increase capacity, and new applications show up that eat up more of that capacity. If you build a broadband network expecting people will only be doing some web surfing and email, they're going to cause problems when they start downloading music and videos. Assuming that usage won't keep growing only causes problems, and shows one of the problems the telcos face in building out their networks. The telcos need to be building out capacity recognizing the likelihood that usage is only going to keep going up. While hopefully they're doing this with the new fiber installation efforts, so far many of those still seem built on the idea that most of the bandwidth won't actually be used -- and that could cause problems down the road for these telcos. Also, it's interesting to note that Verizon has been one of the loudest complainers saying that they wouldn't upgrade their networks without special regulatory help, either in the form of ending linesharing requirements or denying net neutrality legislation. Yet, it seems like there's enough demand that Verizon should be upgrading their networks simply to serve that demand.