It is not the first time I have indulged in navel gazing about what is broadband, how much bandwidth is enough, and what are you really going to do with it. Business Week is having a similar moment, wondering what will you do with all that bandwidth folks like Verizon are promising.
Will it be gaming that will put bandwidth to use? Or will it be dozens of tiny applications that will get us consuming all the bandwidth? I suspect it will be that, that and some of what we don’t know yet. (Of course, our previous threads have shown that there are some technical challenges that need to be overcome. Especially the upstream bandwidth that is so vital for many P2P-based applications, or personal sharing.)
That said, I do agree with my dear friend Cynthia Brumfield, who very succinctly says, there is no such thing as too much bandwidth. (If sold to me at the right price.) I agree with her. Between Skype, SIPphone, YouTube, and iTunes, I already experience the bandwidth paucity, mostly because Comcast doesn’t deliver on what it advertises: 6 megabits per second.
My newly acquired AppleTV is a great device, except it takes forever (to my bandwidth addicted brain) to download the latest episode of Pysch or Ronin, the movie. Now if it were a faster connection – say 20 megabits per second, it would be great. But paying $150 bucks or something ridiculous like that isn’t part of the plan – however!
I think the question is that of price – what speed at what price? In countries where bandwidth is available at affordable prices, the customers and thus the entrepreneurs are figuring out how to put that bandwidth to use. Now if you could get 24 megabits per second for $50 a month, what would you do with it?