Mobile network vs landlines for internet access

Reply to Twitter messages

This is a reply to messages from @TobyParkins between 0813 and 0815UTC on 14 March 2013.

(This is also a communications experiment which I can perhaps try to explain elsewhere. Suffice to say, for now, that this is like a slightly longer Twitter message.)

The conversation so far is below.

This is my reply linked to here:

There are many aspects to this issue. Latency is obviously a factor, but probably only significant  when using satellite links.

The main factor, I think, is that the bandwidth performance of new mobile technology is increasing very rapidly. And this is likely to be the deciding factor for quite a while yet.

It’s important to distinguish between different uses of mobile technology. Although intended for communication with devices which are mobile, of course it works perfectly well for devices (or, in this case, buildings) that are static!

The “last mile” problem has been with us for many years, and for older technologies has mostly been solved by the use of radio transmission. The classic example is television which (apart from the limited use of cables in urban areas) largely uses directional aerials communicating in line-of-sight with non directional transmitters.

The provision of Internet access to homes and offices using fixed directional aerials communicating in line-of-sight with mobile base stations seems to be an obviously viable answer. Over time, this might require more base stations, but wherever there is any mobile coverage at all, the use of a directional aerial will definitely boost that performance and might enable connection where the coverage is currently too poor to use.

Another major factor is the pricing policies; however these tend to change rapidly as market saturation approaches.

Yes, I agree about the WiFi part! But that is another example of radio transmission completing the connection at the device end.

Expect “connected cars” next, with powerful mobile transceivers and WiFi base stations communicating with devices used by people in and around the vehicle.

Twitter conversation so far (in reverse chronological order):

@TobyParkins, in three messages, between 2003.03.14.0813-0815:

Part three:

@johnwlewis and I’ve heard a few question the ADSL2+/FTTC benefits!! (until they switched off wifi and cat5 connected. lol! )

Part two:

@johnwlewis mind you, I guess your average user will not notice the difference between FTTC and 4G.

Part one:

@johnwlewis I’m not so sure. Latency, topography and atmospherics degrade mobile compared to FTTP

@JohnWLewis (me) at 2013.03.14.0751:

@tobyparkins Yes, it’s likely that out performance of mobile vs landlines, which began in 3rd world (no lines), will become true for us all.

@TobyParkins at 2013.03.14.0733:

3G HSDPA from @vodafone_es mobile Internet is beating landlines hands down here on Canary Islands. Maybe 4G for the last 5%? #sfcornwall


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