Home / Blogs

Cable in China

Don't miss a thing – sign up for CircleID Weekly Wrap newsletter delivered to your inbox once a week.
Stephane Bourque

I'm writing this piece on the plane on my way back to Vancouver after a 12-day trip in China. I've written about China before, and every time I go, I understand and appreciate this complex country and culture a little more. If you think China is "up and coming," well, you might want to go and take a look for yourself. To be honest, I think they are already here.

What have I learned about the Chinese broadband industry? To start with, cable is the ugly duckling in China. There are roughly 200 million cable users in China, of which less than 15% have high-speed internet. That's not too shabby, but it's a lot lower than the 500 million plus users on wireless and wired networks. On top of that, the government also mandates that operators provide a number of services at no cost, and smaller providers are up against two cash-rich broadband giants that are subsidized by the government.

As a result of these factors, many cable operators feel that they must give away some of their services in order to attract, or simply keep, their user base. This is a battle that they are unlikely to win, and it explains why the price per port is so crucial to operators. It also helps explain why technologies like EPON Protocol over Coax (EPoC) and Ethernet over Coax (EoC) are widely deployed in China — CMTS ports are just too expensive. The Chinese cable industry has clearly had to be very creative to remain viable and grow, and operators are now driving a new platform called centralized DOCSIS, or C-DOCSIS. This reduces the port cost dramatically, allowing them to compete more effectively with wireline and wireless carriers.

What does all this mean for software makers? Well, we need to first understand the issues and adapt as much as possible. This adaptation includes everything, from the features we offer, to support mechanisms, to, of course, pricing models. So, our homework is to now find a way to make the software affordable and feature-rich for people on the other side of the world. It's not an easy task, but I think it's worthwhile in the end. We're teaching them how to build a business with some North American flavor, while they're teaching us how we can be more competitive. We've made a lot of progress in China already based on how fast cable operators are growing. Even for ugly ducklings, it's impressive — in some cases, up to 100% per year. Not bad for a so-called "up-and-coming" country!

By Stephane Bourque, Founder, CEO and President at Incognito Software Systems. Incognito Software Systems is a global provider of broadband device provisioning, IP address management, bandwidth monitoring, and service activation solutions.

Related topics: Access Providers, Broadband



To post comments, please login or create an account.

Related Blogs

Related News

Explore Topics

Dig Deeper

Afilias Mobile & Web Services

Mobile Internet

Sponsored by Afilias Mobile & Web Services

DNS Security

Sponsored by Afilias


Sponsored by Verisign

Promoted Posts

Now Is the Time for .eco

.eco launches globally at 16:00 UTC on April 25, 2017, when domains will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis. .eco is for businesses, non-profits and people committed to positive change for the planet. See list of registrars offering .eco more»

Boston Ivy Gets Competitive With Its TLDs, Offers Registrars New Wholesale Pricing

With a mission to make its top-level domains available to the broadest market possible, Boston Ivy has permanently reduced its registration, renewal and transfer prices for .Broker, .Forex, .Markets and .Trading. more»

Industry Updates – Sponsored Posts

2016 U.S. Election: An Internet Forecast

Ofcom Benchmarking UK Broadband Performance Welcomed, But Needs Considerable Improvement

DotConnectAfrica Attends Transform Africa 2013 Summit in Rwanda

Dyn Research: CDN Adoption Across Our Customer Base

Neustar Chief Technology Officer Appointed to FCC's Technological Advisory Council

Neustar Expands Professional Services Offerings for Communications Service Providers

Reducing the Risks of BYOD with Nominum's Security Solution

Nominum and IBM Partner Around Big Data

Virgin Media Selects Nominum to Support London Underground WiFi Roll-out

Neustar Labs Innovation Center Grand Opening (Video)

How Secure is Your Mobile Network? And Does It Even Matter? (Webinar)

Nominum Survey of World's Leading ISPs Shows Nearly 60% of ISPs Plan to Roll-Out IPv6 by End of 2012

Nominum Launches Comprehensive Suite of DNS-Based Security Solutions for Russian Service Providers

Nominum Sets New Record for Network Speed and Efficiency

Implementing a Cyber-Security Code of Conduct: Real-Life Lessons From Australia (Webinar)

Neustar and University of Illinois Launch the Neustar Innovation Center

Australian ISP iiNet selects ARI Registry Services to Help It Apply for and Operate .iinet TLD

Nominum Launches World's First Purpose-Built Suite of DNSā€Based Solutions for Mobile Operators

Breaking the DNS: Another Look at How SOPA Could Be Destructive

72 Confirmed Talks - If You're Attending, Now is the Time to Register