Tag Archives: bandwidth

Understanding Upload and Download Speeds

work_signA divine revelation came to me in a construction induced traffic jam on the interstate.  Three were lanes reduced to one and slowed to a safe speed as we passed construction workers.  New cars entering the road compounded the issue as we plodded along.  It was then I realized this was the example I needed to explain the speed of the internet to many people.

The problem?  Friends sign up for high speed internet say for example 6mb down and 1mb up.  Nothing spectacular but good for the normal user.  They become frustrated when experiencing slow downloads from say youtube, flickr, or a software updater.  “I have high speed internet and they don’t give it to me!  Youtube is always buffering and files download slowly.”  The interstate traffic jam should help explain it.

The travel on the interstate is only as fast as the slowest part of the road.  In the case of youtube, your internet is 6mb down, but youtube servers may not be able to stream the video faster than 150kb, much slower.  Facebook is notorious for being overwhelmed at the number of page requests.  As a result of so many requests it becomes like all of the cars trying to squeeze into one lane.

A personal example would be the upload speed to my blog.  It does not matter what my local internet speed is, I can only upload as fast as my host server will allow me.  For instance my wife and I went to the fair the other day.  Hopped on the highway and buzzed the 5 miles in no time (equal to our bandwidth speed).  We parked the car with no problem (opened up a connection port to a server).  And then we waited in a long line to enter through a narrow gate with only two ticket agents (the server speed).  It didn’t matter how fast we travelled to get there or how easy parking was.  The ticket agents could only go so fast.

So calm down everyone in this highspeed life of ours.  Yes everything is getting quicker, but there are still narrow places in the road.  Some servers are overloaded, some computers are slow, sometimes things break.  You can be assured that the average speed will continue to increase.

GNC-2007-05-11 #266

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Verizon Doubles DSL Speed

Verizon Communications has doubled the speed of consumer DSL service is a dozen east coast states. If the market reacts well, the remaining states will receive the same faster DSL alternative. The additional bandwidth is a reaction to Comcast’s doubling the speed of its cable broadband service, earlier this year. The extra bandwidth will be a big hit with online gamers and professionals who work from home.

For about $40 a month, the new DSL bandwidth will be 3 Mbps, downstream, and 768 Kbps, upstream. For cost-conscious customers who only send and receive e-mail and surf occasionally, a half-speed option will be available for $30 a month.

Dave’s Opinion
Just over half of online Americans have broadband service at home: 63 million or 51 percent. There’s always a use for more bandwidth, even by those who don’t consider themselves technically sophisticated or have flexibility in their personal schedules. When it comes to network connectivity, faster is always better.

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Stratospheric Broadband

Metropolitan-wide broadband services may soon be coming from overhead. Sanswire Networks, LLC hopes to bring broadband to entire metropolitan areas via tiny airships. Atlanta, Georgia may be the first city to benefit from this interesting digital communication service, starting as early as next week.

Ground-based wireless equipment will coordinate signal dissemination using a Stratellite floating high over the city.The Stratellites are similar to satellites; however, the new devices are stationed in the stratosphere rather than being in space orbit.

According to Sanswire Networks, a Stratellite is a high-altitude airship that when in place in the stratosphere will provide a stationary platform for transmitting various types of wireless communications services currently transmitted from cell towers and satellites. It is not a balloon or a blimp. It is a high-altitude airship made of Spectra and powered by solar powered electrical engines, each Stratellite will reach its final altitude by utilizing a helium and nitrogen filled double envelope. Once in place at 65,000 feet each Stratellite will remain in one Global Positioning System (GPS) coordinate, providing the ideal wireless transmission platform. Each Stratellite has a payload capacity of several thousand pounds and clear line-of-site to approximately 300,000 square miles, an area roughly the size of Texas. However, the Company’s initial plan is to use one Stratellite for each major metropolitan area.

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Sanswire Networks, LLC