One of my photos

More temptation

June 2nd, 2009 · Posted by Skuds in Technology · No Comments · Technology

I got a letter from Virgin Media yesterday, telling me that 50Mb broadband is now available here…   very tempting.  That is starting to get respectable – but still there is the frustration that the upstream speed is only 1.5Mb.  (As somebody who remembers feeling dizzy when v.32bis came out I feel slightly odd saying “only 1.5Mb”).

Sounds like a minor quibble, but part of the deal from Virgin is free online storage for backups.  They make a lot of noise about being able to download an album in 11 seconds or an entire HD movie in 15 minutes – but if you wanted to then backup that movie it would take 8 hours…

Maybe we are still too busy playing with all the great stuff that large bandwidth enable to think about potential next-big-things that can’t happen even at 1.5Mb.   It is true that most demand is for downstream capacity – making streaming HD video possible,  removing the annoying buffering delays on TV-on-demand, playing high-res online games, and so on – but a lot of that only came about when the infrastructure made it possible.

So what uses would high capacity upload be put to?   If I knew that I would be making a fortune doing it, but when it happens no doubt it will all seem obvious in hindsight.  The obvious one would be high resolution or HD web cams making decent desktop videoconferencing possible, and I bet somebody would come up with some impressive peer-to-peer console games.

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