said by Gbcue: said by tschmidt: said by Luminaris:
So what's the point of other countries having 2-3X the speed we have then? Is it a need? That's what I wonder.
Residential speed is a chicken N egg problem.
Application and service providers are not going to develop applications that need very high speed until there is a large enough population of users to justify it. If we were all still constrained to dialup most of the applications and services we take for granted today would not be practical.
Video libraries and video on demand is very demanding. HD feed requires about 15 Mbps. For a family of four the sweet spot is 100 Mbps. 3-D when it happens will need even more bandwidth.
Telecommuting is popular but often limited by how quickly data flows between employee and office.
New immersive games and virtual reality all require high capacity fast connections.
Ultimately the upper bound is driven by human physiology and compression algorithms.
Is it really a Chicken/Egg problem?
Remember when everybody was going from dial-up to broadband? Was it done for fun? No, it was done because application providers were already thinking of the future.
The same needs to be done for broadband speed. When people get fed up of waiting for an HD stream to load over their 10Mbit connection, they'll soon jump, like how we all did to broadband.
The first people I knew who got broadband (that neat new service from the phone company called a "digital subscriber line") got it to run FTP sites to trade pirated music files.
I honestly didn't begin to see applications that needed broadband until after 2002 or so. Maybe there were, but I didn't see them.
100Mbps isn't really needed for HD streaming video right now. In fact you can do that on a 10M connection with MPEG4 compression.