Tag: broadband

Home workers are up in internet arms

cloud 1Thinkbroadband surveyed close to 900 British workers and has discovered a large percentage have gripes about using the internet from home.

While the majority of people working from home feel that it’s important to their job, their ability to do their job is marred by defects with their broadband conection.

Buffering (23%), slow download and upload speeds (34%) and service loss (16%) are their major gripes.

Thinkbroad believes companies should offer a second line, testing the service, paying attention to upload speeds, use the same cloud based sharing systems, and ensure employees test access if they only work from home when the weather’s bad, and the like.

Internet of video things will be next really big thing

Internet of ThingsThe internet of things might have to be renamed the really big internet of video things. As names go it’s not as catchy but it reflects the reality that in a little more than four years from now, we will be outnumbered by video-enabled devices connected to the internet.

This is according to research from the Broadband Technology Intelligence service, which is part of IHS and is based in the US.

At present there are thought to be 4.3 billion video-enabled devices connected to the internet. This catch-all term of ‘video devices’ comprises things like tablets, smart TVs, games consoles, smartphones, connected set-top boxes, Blu-ray players, and PCs and the like.

By 2017 this will increase to 8.2 billion, more than the number of homo sapiens likely to be kicking about at the time.

In 2005, PCs accounted for 93% of all connected devices. By the end of 2017, PCs will comprise only 23 percent of the connected installed base. Smart TVs will be at 5%, consoles at 2%, and smartphones and tablets collectively representing 67%.

This proliferation will change the way people watch TV, movies, news and access many more services besides. It will introduce many of the same problems of disintermediation that has affected the mobile phone sector – customers’ loyalties lie not with the network they use, but the handset they bought, they detect little value in the network and price has been driven down.

Unsurprisingly, there will be modest growth in mature markets, 10% or so in North America and Western Europe, and double that in Asia-Pac, mostly down to increasing demand in China.

Sub-Saharan Africa is expected to see an additional 145 million new connected video devices added to the total.

According to Merrick Kingston, a senior analyst at Broadband Technology: “On average every human being in the world will possess more than one Internet-connected video device by the year 2017 – a major milestone for the electronics market.”

And in so doing he demonstrates why it pays to be careful when playing with statistics, as clearly not everyone in the world will own on average 1.1 video devices.

Kingston goes on to clarify this point by saying: “In practice, ownership of Internet-connected hardware will be concentrated among users whose homes are equipped with broadband connections. We’re quickly approaching a world where the average broadband household contains 10 connected, video-enabled devices. This means that each TV set installed in a broadband-equipped home will be surrounded by three Internet-connected devices.”

A number which rings true in the home of this average hack.

Mobile data traffic to increase 1,000 times beyond 2020

ericsson-logoConsumers and carriers are slowly but surely transitioning to 4G and the hunger for high speed broadband on the go is  transforming the way we use our clever mobile devices, including traditional kit like notebooks. Earlier this week Samsung announced its first 5G milestone, proudly telling the world that 1Gbps 5G is coming by 2020.

EE pledges jobs, sustainability

eeCarrier EE has published its first Responsibility Report, and we’re sure the PR cogs were working overtime to get it word perfect.

Within its musings, the company claims it has identified twelve areas that need improving, including reducing its environmental impact, keeping children safe and building further sustainability in its supply chain.

It also promised that by 2015 it will improve the digital skills of 1 million people, as well as recruit 500 apprentices into its business

The company has said it will be launching an EE graduate scheme and has committed to
supporting Plotr, the government-supported careers portal which is set to launch this year.

EE said its HR team will begin an initiative in schools, supporting 10 week-long work experience placements at its Bristol office for students from local secondary schools.

The pledges come as a new survey found that a quarter of Brits can’t be bothered to report broadband issues. According to comparison website Recombu.com/digital, of the 1447 people it asked  74 percent blamed slow internet issues on ‘heavy traffic’ and fail to report slow connectivity to their internet service provider.

Just over a third said they only reported a problem when ‘connectivity stopped entirely’, while 11 percent stated that they ‘never’ reported issues.

BT in line for BDUK

ukflagWith Fujitsu pulling out of the Broadband Delivery UK Framework there is just one ISP most think could win the contract – BT.

Despite this, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport is not too fussed. A spokesperson told V3 that although it wants as much competition in place for the contracts, the department accepts some projects are “not as commercially competitive” because of the required scale and infrastructure.

BT has that infrastructure.

Fujitsu for its part said that it was pulling out of the process after conversations with the Department. Ultimately, the company decided there wasn’t enough value. It did not detail the “various conditions surrounding the BDUK process” that ruled it out of the competition.

BT promised it would make good on its investments of up to £1 billion. So far, BT has won Wales, Rutland, North Yorkshire, Surrey, Suffolk and Lancashire, V3 reports.


BSkyB O2 Telefonica deal is “significant”

Hands across the waterThe acquisition of UK Telefonica’s O2 broadband by BSkyB is “significant” for both customers and the industry, an expert has said.

The comments by Andrew Ferguson, editor at ThinkBroadband, come as BSkyB announced it would buy its rival’s 500,000 customer accounts for £180 million, including the O2 and BE consumer broadband and home phone businesses. It said the by gobbling up its rival it would be able to provide advantages of scale for its home communications business.

Currently BSkyB has around 3.6 million customers, who pay for the company’s TV, broadband and telephone services

The deal is due to complete by the end of April, subject to regulatory approval. Once it has been signed off, all O2 and BE broadband customers will be switched to BskyB’s all-fibre network.

“The acquisition is significant both for the customers involved who have elected to join a partial LLU service, rather than the fully unbundled options sold by TalkTalk and Sky and for the industry overall, as we now have a new second largest retail broadband provider,” Mr Ferguson told ChannelEye.

“For the industry as a whole the sale of the O2/Be customers means that the last significant partial LLU service (where telephone is left on the WLR platform and only the broadband is ran over the providers own hardware) is vanishing, at least in terms of the consumer retail arena. This means that the vast majority of the unbundled services in the UK actually have both their telephone and broadband service provided over a Sky or TalkTalk MSAN (MSAN being a DSLAM providing multiple services).”

However, he added that the acquisition would also remove the Be retail network “which while  has remained small was well loved by its generally loyal customers”.

The company was also the provider that pushed ADSL2+ onto the UK market and also gave the people control over the various parameters of the ADSL2+ service, meaning customers could tweak the performance of their line to be the best in terms of line speed and latency.

However, this could be both good and bad news for both smaller providers.

“The Sky LLU platform tends to favour stability at the expense of a small amount of connection speed and latency, this means we are expecting to see a fair number of Be customers migrating to other smaller providers,” Mr Ferguson said.

“In terms of the regulatory position, it means Ofcom is now really regulating just five major players which control 94.4 percent of the retail sector in the UK.

“The problem with this dominance by a handful of major players is that it will be increasingly difficult for the small providers who service the pro-sumer and SME sector to get their voice heard,” he added.

4G adoption rates in UK remain sluggish

EE-4GEE-logoEverything Everywhere launched Britain’s first 4G network in late October last year and it seemed like it was off to a modest start. However, it now appears that the number of early adopters was remarkably low.

EE shed more light on the number of customers in its quarterly earnings report, but it did not break down the figures to distinguish between 3G and 4G users. In spite of that, the numbers look bleak. EE added just 201,000 postpaid 3G/4G customers in Q4 2012, down from 250,000 in Q3 and 313,000 in Q4 2011.