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Comments on news posted 2012-05-16 10:17:39: Just when the network neutrality debate appeared to have resigned itself to a dark corner, the revelation that Comcast was exempting Comcast TV content over Xbox 360 traffic from its bandwidth cap rekindled the entire debate. ..

page: 1 · 2 · 3 · next


pnh102
Reptiles Are Cuddly And Pretty
Premium
join:2002-05-02
Mount Airy, MD

Stupid Government

Did the powers-that-be that rubber-stamped this merger really believe that Comcast was going to actually obey the terms of the merger conditions?

Oh and where are those lower prices?

Morons.
--
Romney 2012 - Put an adult in charge.


28619103
Premium
join:2009-03-01
21435

3 edits

2 recommendations

How is this different from FiOS TV and Uverse TV

The traffic is not prioritized (so capacity management impacts all services equally). ADDITIONAL bandwidth is added as not to impact your Internet service. On top of that, capacity is managed normally with the downstream while multiple watchdogs (FCC, Netflix, etc) have been measuring this for years with great results as compared with all ISPs.

I'm amazed at all the negative hype around using IP as it was intended to be used. Viva IP Convergence!

Isn't this like FiOS TV and Uverse TV?


Oh_No
Trogglus normalus

join:2011-05-21
Chicago, IL

Gotta love this

You can argue it both ways and our "lack of technology knowledge" officials have no idea what it all means.

Yes Comcast is giving priority to the intranet service over internet service. Now is that against network neutrality for the internet, obviously no.
But if throwing this in the face of our knowledgeless elected officials actually gets all bandwidth caps banned then I am all for it.
Caps should never be allowed, we got rid of them in 1995 and companies are trying force them back on us.


28619103
Premium
join:2009-03-01
21435

Graph of how it works

Click for full size
Bryan Berg's analysis was excellent! He had some missing pieces which were clarified in Tony Werner's blog post about how DSCP is not used for Xbox priority, only service flows, but here is a great picture Bryan posted which shows the traffic does not impact his Internet. It is bandwidth over and above his service.


Mari

@verizon.net
reply to 28619103

Re: How is this different from FiOS TV and Uverse TV

said by 28619103:

The traffic is not prioritized (so capacity management impacts all services equally) and ADDITIONAL bandwidth is added as not to impact Internet.

Yes additional bandwidth has been added, but it *appears* that all traffic is still traveling down the same QAM channels, even though there are more of them now. Even if Comcast is not prioritizing traffic, there are still ultimately issues around how much bandwidth the MSO is using for managed services versus Internet service. It's ultimately a finite resource, and there will be demand from both the TV and Internet sides of the house. There's no guarantee that bandwidth will be added equitably for both sides in the future, and we have no way of knowing how Comcast (or any other cable operator) decides to divvy it up.


Nightfall
My Goal Is To Deny Yours
Premium,MVM
join:2001-08-03
Grand Rapids, MI
Reviews:
·ooma
·Comcast
·Callcentric
·Site5.com

Well, it is their network

While I don't like traffic prioritization, this isn't QOS. This is simply the fact that Comcast is not counting Comcast TV over the Xbox 360 to the cap. That, IMHO, isn't a big deal to me and here is why. Does it create an unfair advantage? Not in my mind. The people who have netflix, like my parents and friends, are going to continue using them. Those that have comcast in addition to netflix, like my parents and friends, are going to watch it. If they have xbox 360s, then they can watch it without it counting towards the cap. I just don't see that as an issue.

Now, if Comcast was using QOS to block other traffic from coming in or restrict the speed of netflix, then I would agree. That just isn't the case here.

The cap is not an issue for 99.9% of the customer base. Almost all common consumers don't even know about the cap since it is a soft cap.

Netflix should be focusing more on getting content faster and improving their business model than complaining about this.
--
My domain - Nightfall.net

UnnDunn
Premium
join:2005-12-21
Brooklyn, NY
reply to 28619103

Re: How is this different from FiOS TV and Uverse TV

said by 28619103:

Isn't this like FiOS TV and Uverse TV?

The difference is neither Verizon nor AT&T impose bandwidth caps on their wired residential broadband plans.


anon5234

@mich.net

If I understood correctly

It sounded like their traffic not only avoided the usage cap but it also the speed limit. For people on Blast this probably won't make a difference, but if you were on the economy tier it certainly might.

This would be good news for cable subscribers as they could just get digital tv and a 1.5mbps internet package as it won't impact the quality of the stream for them. Start comparing a 1.5mbps netflix stream to a 6mbps xfinity stream and I can guess which one is going to look better...

GTFan

join:2004-12-03

2 recommendations

reply to UnnDunn

Re: How is this different from FiOS TV and Uverse TV

said by UnnDunn:

said by 28619103:

Isn't this like FiOS TV and Uverse TV?

The difference is neither Verizon nor AT&T impose bandwidth caps on their wired residential broadband plans.

Wrong - U-Verse has a 250GB cap, which their own TV conveniently ignores. Just like Comcast.

GTFan

join:2004-12-03
reply to 28619103

Re: Graph of how it works

said by 28619103:

Bryan Berg's analysis was excellent! He had some missing pieces which were clarified in Tony Werner's blog post about how DSCP is not used for Xbox priority, only service flows, but here is a great picture Bryan posted which shows the traffic does not impact his Internet. It is bandwidth over and above his service.

Great! Now I can have even more bits flowing down the pipe potentially clogging up my neighborhood node at peak times!

So where's that justification for the cap again?


IPPlanMan
Holy Cable Modem Batman

join:2000-09-20
Washington, DC
kudos:1

The cap was never about congestion... Not in the slightest.

Comcast's usage cap was set at 250GB in October 2008 shortly after a settlement in Florida (»bit.ly/J0UKka) and it hasn't been increased since.

Providing exemptions to the cap for this activity could suggest the following:
1) This cap really isn't high enough anymore for "normal use". Why go so far to provide an exemption for this usage otherwise if it was?
2) Comcast has little incentive to support potentially competitive Internet-based offerings with a fixed cap of 250 GB. (The Cord-Cutters)

Looking at Comcast's business tier services for comparison on pricing. (Comcast Business Plans have no usage cap)
»business.comcast.com/smb/service···et/plans
- Starter $59.95 (12 Mbps/2 Mbps, 2 email boxes, Internet Security for 25 computers, Microsoft Cloud Services, Web Hosting)
- Premium $99.95 (22 Mbps/5 Mbps 8 email boxes, Internet Security for 25 computers, Microsoft Cloud Services, Web Hosting)

With all these extras included along with business level-grade support/service and no usage cap, these prices are only slightly more than their residential counterparts, which are subject to the 250 GB user cap.

I think that's pretty interesting...
--
"We're going to start at one end of (Fallujah), and we're not going to stop until we get to the other. If there's anybody left when that happens, we're going to turn around and we're going to go back and finish it."
Lt. Col. Pete Newell: 1st Inf. US Army


EnasYorl
Thieves World

join:2001-12-02
West
Reviews:
·Anveo
reply to Oh_No

Re: Gotta love this

said by Oh_No:

You can argue it both ways and our "lack of technology knowledge" officials have no idea what it all means.

Yes Comcast is giving priority to the intranet service over internet service. Now is that against network neutrality for the internet, obviously no.
But if throwing this in the face of our knowledgeless elected officials actually gets all bandwidth caps banned then I am all for it.
Caps should never be allowed, we got rid of them in 1995 and companies are trying force them back on us.

So you have to ask yourself the Internet is really just a bunch of Private ISP networks that tie their networks together at Peering Routers. »www.bgp4.as/internet-exchanges

So is the only true part of the internet the piece of fiber between the two ISP's peering routers as the old government ArpaNET »en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Arpan···1977.png isn't the main backbone anymore. It's the Level 3, AT&T, etc that have some of the larger pieces.

Someone needs to clearing define where does the Internet reside?

Until that is resolved we can talk about this forever.


FFH
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5
reply to Nightfall

Re: Well, it is their network

Correct. As I posted yesterday »RE: Is Comcast prioritizing traffic or not?, this is just about not going against the cap. There is no QOS prioritizing like Netflix is whining about.

And I agree with Comcast that Xbox traffic is just to another STB and shouldn't be counted against the cap just because the traffic is IP instead of QAM.


iamwhatiam

@verizon.net

Well, of course they're not...

and they've never forged any packets either (ha-ha).

qworster

join:2001-11-25
Bryn Mawr, PA
Reviews:
·Comcast
·Verizon FiOS
reply to Nightfall

Re: Well, it is their network

said by Nightfall:

While I don't like traffic prioritization, this isn't QOS. This is simply the fact that Comcast is not counting Comcast TV over the Xbox 360 to the cap. That, IMHO, isn't a big deal to me and here is why. Does it create an unfair advantage? Not in my mind. The people who have netflix, like my parents and friends, are going to continue using them. Those that have comcast in addition to netflix, like my parents and friends, are going to watch it. If they have xbox 360s, then they can watch it without it counting towards the cap. I just don't see that as an issue.

Now, if Comcast was using QOS to block other traffic from coming in or restrict the speed of netflix, then I would agree. That just isn't the case here.

The cap is not an issue for 99.9% of the customer base. Almost all common consumers don't even know about the cap since it is a soft cap.

Netflix should be focusing more on getting content faster and improving their business model than complaining about this.

This might be their network---BUT they have been given a de facto MONOPOLY within most of their service area. How is this any different then a landlord not renting to blacks or families with children? Your explanation would go: Well it IS their apartment complex! Sorry bud, but there were conditions that Comcrap agreed to and now they are thumbing their nose at them.

Penny3000

join:2003-11-24
Oak Ridge, TN

The real answer from an Ex-Employee...

I used to work for Comcast so I know this as fact.
Comcast, represented as one company is actually two entities.
Comcast Media is the second entity. The fact that help proves this is the stock symbols, there are two. Now companies including comcast get their media (video as a example) from Comcast media. Directv does it. Charter does it. Even Hulu does it.

Comcast does not have to give Comcast media priority over it's network because the traffic never leaves their network. I can't recall where Comcast Media is located but Comcast does have a backbone running between cities and Comcast Media is on the backbone. With Comcast Media being on the network and the traffic never having to leave the network to get to a subscriber, the bandwidth will appear to come as priority but all it is that the data does not have to touch the latency side of the internet.

Comcast does the same thing with the phone service. The phone service is on a different QAM channel that come to the house. When you call someone within the Comcast network, the phone call never leaves the network thereby the call looking like it gets priority.


ptrowski
Got Helix?
Premium
join:2005-03-14
Putnam, CT
kudos:4
reply to 28619103

Re: How is this different from FiOS TV and Uverse TV

said by 28619103:

The traffic is not prioritized (so capacity management impacts all services equally). ADDITIONAL bandwidth is added as not to impact your Internet service. On top of that, capacity is managed normally with the downstream while multiple watchdogs (FCC, Netflix, etc) have been measuring this for years with great results as compared with all ISPs.

I'm amazed at all the negative hype around using IP as it was intended to be used. Viva IP Convergence!

Isn't this like FiOS TV and Uverse TV?

FIOS TV and Uverse TV technically are not apps on a different device though. Also interesting enough AT&T stopped offering the 360 bundle yesterday, said they are waiting for enhancements.
--
"So, Lone Starr, now you see that evil will always triumph because good is dumb."

Have you been touched by his noodly appendage? »www.venganza.org

UnnDunn
Premium
join:2005-12-21
Brooklyn, NY

1 recommendation

reply to GTFan
said by GTFan:

Wrong - U-Verse has a 250GB cap, which their own TV conveniently ignores. Just like Comcast.

If that's the case, why is Netflix bitching about Comcast and not about AT&T?

nasadude

join:2001-10-05
Rockville, MD
reply to pnh102

Re: Stupid Government

well put.


Nightfall
My Goal Is To Deny Yours
Premium,MVM
join:2001-08-03
Grand Rapids, MI
Reviews:
·ooma
·Comcast
·Callcentric
·Site5.com
reply to qworster

Re: Well, it is their network

said by qworster:

said by Nightfall:

While I don't like traffic prioritization, this isn't QOS. This is simply the fact that Comcast is not counting Comcast TV over the Xbox 360 to the cap. That, IMHO, isn't a big deal to me and here is why. Does it create an unfair advantage? Not in my mind. The people who have netflix, like my parents and friends, are going to continue using them. Those that have comcast in addition to netflix, like my parents and friends, are going to watch it. If they have xbox 360s, then they can watch it without it counting towards the cap. I just don't see that as an issue.

Now, if Comcast was using QOS to block other traffic from coming in or restrict the speed of netflix, then I would agree. That just isn't the case here.

The cap is not an issue for 99.9% of the customer base. Almost all common consumers don't even know about the cap since it is a soft cap.

Netflix should be focusing more on getting content faster and improving their business model than complaining about this.

This might be their network---BUT they have been given a de facto MONOPOLY within most of their service area. How is this any different then a landlord not renting to blacks or families with children? Your explanation would go: Well it IS their apartment complex! Sorry bud, but there were conditions that Comcrap agreed to and now they are thumbing their nose at them.

Way to change the topic. While I don't disagree with your point, we are discussing how the traffic on the Comcast network while watching Comcast TV doesn't affect the cap. You have a comment on that topic or are you just going to derail it with more anti-comcast discussion?
--
My domain - Nightfall.net


DaSneaky1D
what's up
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-29
The Lou
Reviews:
·Charter

1 recommendation

reply to UnnDunn

Re: How is this different from FiOS TV and Uverse TV

Because Netflix's complaint doesn't stem from "fair access" to Comcast's customers, but for cheap access to their customers.

Older article, but still relevant:

»arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2010···astards/


28619103
Premium
join:2009-03-01
21435
reply to Mari
Doesn't that exist for ALL IP pipes? Again it is a capacity management process. This is how IP works folks. Do you want to go back to the old days of T1's / service? What do you think that will cost?


IPPlanMan
Holy Cable Modem Batman

join:2000-09-20
Washington, DC
kudos:1

Comcast is protecting its turf...

Comcast wants TV to remain TV.
They want you to watch TV on TV and have a predefined amount of Internet for other uses. (250 GB)

However, it's clear that the market is moving in the direction of TV being just like any other kind of Data. That's scares the crap out of Comcast, because it will undermine its entire business model. Again, the cap has nothing to do with preventing network congestion. There's already a system in place to do that in real time.

Comcast has tried to carve out a protected niche here where they argue that they have a private network going to an Xbox. Furthermore, they claim that a data cap enacted nearly 4 years ago is still adequate. What a crock.
--
"We're going to start at one end of (Fallujah), and we're not going to stop until we get to the other. If there's anybody left when that happens, we're going to turn around and we're going to go back and finish it."
Lt. Col. Pete Newell: 1st Inf. US Army


baineschile
2600 ways to live
Premium
join:2008-05-10
Sterling Heights, MI
reply to UnnDunn

Re: How is this different from FiOS TV and Uverse TV

Simple question, simple answer. Comcast is bigger, and has more subscribers than UVerse.


Vchat20
Landing is the REAL challenge
Premium
join:2003-09-16
Columbus, OH
reply to 28619103
Actually, not to be completely nitpicky, U-Verse does do some traffic prioritization on their services. You can get a high enough HSI tier that would otherwise conflict bandwidth-wise with TV viewing if you had a full 4 HD streams going at once. It has been noted ad-nauseum that the HSI is throttled back to accomodate TV viewing/recording in these scenarios. I believe priority was Phone, TV, HSI at last check.

This is actually the primary reason (as far as I have seen rumored, obviously there isn't going to be an official statement from AT&T) that they have yet to implement caps on the VDSL U-Verse service which is the only service that carries TV and phone as well as HSI. Basically they'd need to successfully and accurately track just HSI in the bandwidth meter and ignore TV and phone. On paper it sounds easy, but as always in practice there's likely a lot of annoying corner cases.

And with FiOS, unless they have changed things recently, doesn't even use IP for TV services nor phone. The HSI pretty much rides its own trackable pipe separate from phone and TV. I -believe- the only thing that rides on HSI that is TV related is DVR control stuff and On Demand.
--
I swear, some people should have pace-makers installed to free up the resources. Breathing and heart beat taxes their whole system, all of their brain cells wasted on life support.-two bit brains, and the second bit is wasted on parity! ~head_spaz


CableConvert
Premium
join:2003-12-05
Atlanta, GA

Am I wrong?

So please correct me if I'm wrong, but in simplistic terms...say I am on my pc watching a netflix movie, my roommate #1 is downloading some torrents (legal of course), roommate #2 is surfing...all which have maxed out my d/l bandwidth...and then roommate 3 fires up his Xbox to watch a movie via Comcast...Comcast is going to ADD enough bandwidth so he can watch his movie which is prioritized over the other things? Is this an overly simplistic view?

talz13

join:2006-03-15
Avon, OH
reply to pnh102

Re: Stupid Government

Also, if they are exempting some of the traffic that only flows on their network, should they not also exempt other traffic (p2p, etc.) that is wholly within their network as well?

Better not be counting the bittorrent data flowing between comcast customers on the cap!

firedrakes

join:2009-01-29
Arcadia, FL
reply to CableConvert

Re: Am I wrong?

you nailed it cable convert.


SHoTTa35

@optonline.net
reply to CableConvert
Not overly simplistic but basically that's sorta what's going on.

As it stands now, instead of adding, Comcast just sends the data over an unused portion of the bandwidth your modem can do. If you have a 50Mbps plan with a D3 modem, it's the modem then limit the speeds to 50Mbps, it still has access to the rest of the bandwidth (100-300Mbps) and I guess if the Xbox Xfinity data is tagged as such, it just gets access to that other bandwidth that's not available to normal TCP packets.

While I agree this is "private" network, the only difference is below:

"ISP router" to CMTS to modem to my router to Xbox

vs

CDN to CMTS to Modem to my router to Xbox.

I'm sure Comcast doesn't have a bandwidth cap on their connection to the internet. AT&T/Verizon/L3 or whomever doesn't go, "Oh sorry Comcast, you can only use 50,000PB this month and nothing more or we'll charge you or cut you off" - In reality Comcast just pays for access to those backbones and if they want to dump 1Billion PetaBytes or 1 Thousand it doesn't matter. The router they have wont melt because it's doing more work either, it just might not be able to keep up. The problem is that if their customers use more data they'll have to upgrade the ISP Router(s) to handle the load and that's just not good business! Stock holders don't like seeing you spending money even if that means you'll have happier customers and therefore more willing to spend. Comcast rather getting by with what they have while charging more and therefore making a profit each quarter since costs hasn't gone up!


nothing00

join:2001-06-10
Centereach, NY
reply to Nightfall

Re: Well, it is their network

Of course it's their network! A completely different network even! Totally different!

So answer this question. Do I need to be a Comcast INTERNET subscriber to receive this TV SERVICE?

They said it was separate.