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A technology blog for The Economist Group IT team

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Hyper Broadband Insanity Spreading Across UK

The amount of data ISP's are able to squeeze down decades old copper wire keeps increasing dramatically.

Earlier this year the new ISP 'Be' debuted a 24Mbps ADSL+ service in the London area only. Following the recent news (reported right here on EcobologIT) that Sky had purchased ISP Easynet, its subsidiary UKOnline has now announced 22mbps ADSL nationwide. There are of course limitations depending on how far you happen to live from the central office and the additional cost of a new modem that can support the increased data transmission. I also have a feeling the upstream speeds will remain constant at 256Kb for all of eternity.

Zen, Wanadoo and even BT are preparing to increase their ADSL speeds to 8Mbps, whilst on the cable side NTL have announced a 10Mbps data service upgrade for all of their customers by the end of 2005.

Not fast enough you say? Telewest (which I believe has merged with NTL and are now known collectively by the brilliant name UK Cable) is hoping to launch a service based on DOCSIS 3 (Data Over Cable Service Interface Specifications) middleware which will allow download speeds between 50Mbps and 100Mbps by the end of 2006. As my grandmother would have said, 'Stop this meshugass already!'
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