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story category Does The Future Hold Infinite Bandwidth?
Or a littany of roadblocks, restrictions and fees?
08:59AM Tuesday Jun 23 2009 by Karl Bode
Techdirt directs our attention to one consultant's exploration of "infinite bandwidth." As bandwidth gets cheaper and cheaper to deliver, and broadband penetrates every business practice from wired coke machines to the health care industry -- there's a certainly a world of opportunities awaiting innovative companies. We can already hear most ISP insiders reminding Stalk they "ain't goin' to use their pipes for free," though Techdirt's Mike Masnick makes the point that opening the flood gates and embracing the future makes better sense:
Bandwidth is going to increase. Those who attempt to cap it or limit it are only going to make their own pipes significantly less valuable. However, those who recognize how empowering more bandwidth can be, and how approaching "infinite bandwidth" opens up the possibility for new services and apps that we can't even fathom today, will start to realize that providing ever more bandwidth increases value and clamping down on bandwidth kills value.
Except while the cost of bandwidth delivery drops, the lack of competition has many ISPs pushing bogus concepts like the exaflood, with the goal of hoisting artificial scarcity upon the market. In part, it's because monopoly and duopoly carriers have one foot in the delivery of content. As with Internet video, they fear that the Internet's innovators will create business models that erode their existing revenues (like cable TV), so to them -- squeezing the pipe and charging by the bit seems like a logical pursuit.