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Getting on with Digital Transformation: Three Steps to Making Strategic Technology Choices

In a recently published Uptime Institute Survey, Uptime Institute found that organizations operating data centers are finding it increasingly difficult to recruit professionals skilled in security, networking, and hybrid technologies. This realization comes at an interesting time, as the monolithic business infrastructure built over the last two decades is now entering a period of transformation. more

ITU’s Critical Cybersecurity Role and the 2018 Plenipotentiary

In the rather unique world of public international law for cybersecurity, the treaty provisions of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) stand alone. They form the multilateral basis for the existence of all communication networks, internets, and services worldwide and have obtained the assent by every nation in the world. They also contain the only meaningful multilateral cybersecurity provisions that have endured over a century and a half through all manner of technological change. more

Comcast Sneaks in Another Billing Line Item and "Earns" an Additional $1 Billion

My Comcast bill arrived today with a sneaky new $2.68 charge, $2.50 for leasing one (and only one) set-top box and $0.18 for the remote. This new billing line item, like the many others Comcast has introduced, adds to its bottom line with no additional capital expenditure. It shows how resisting the obligation to return to accepting set-top box free, "cable ready" sets was a smart strategy. more

When the Internet Service Provider is Government-Owned Monopoly: Cuba's Forthcoming 3G Pricing Model

Jorge Luis Valdés Hernández, Director de Servicios Convergentes de la Vicepresidencia de Integración Comercial de ETECSA, described the forthcoming changes to their mobile Internet service in a recent press conference. (He also has a very long job title). To be honest, the press conference coverage left me a bit confused, but this is some of what he said as I understood it. more

Cuba on Advances in the "Computerization of Society"

A recent televised roundtable enumerated advances in the computerization of Cuban society, including: Telephone density is 58% with 6.5 million accounts, 5.2 million of which are cell phones. 1.5 million people access Nauta mail with cell phones. Over 1.7 million have permanent accounts. There are 1,713 public-access spots: 709 WiFi locations, over 700 at ETECSA premises and the same number in third-party locations (but 709+1400 is 2109, not 1,713). more

The 500M Wireless-Only Connections

Around 500M Africans, Indonesians, and Indians are regular Internet users without a landline. Brazil, Indonesia, and Mexico add about 200M more. In total, something like 1B people were wireless-only at the end of Q3 2017. I'm comparing the number of Facebook users (over 250M in India) with the number of landlines (less than 20M in India) for a rough guess at how many are wireless only. In the developed world, 70-90% of all homes have a landline connection... more

The Color of the Net Has Changed

About 65% of 1.5B Internet "connections" are in the Global South, led by the BRICS. The actual number of users is probably twice that. Three quarters are not native English speakers. China has three times as many as the United States. India has more Facebook users than the United States. Vietnam has the fastest growth. See some figures below for why I'm confident Indonesia has more than 100M wireless only. more

Today's Internet: More BRICS Than Westerners

Something over 55% of landline broadband users are in the "Global South," about 500M. The South is about 65% if you include "wireless-only" many of which are 4G LTE at ten megabits or more. The gap is widening rapidly and will increase by well over 70M in 2018. Six large developing countries are growing 5% or more in the last year, compared to only one in the developed world. China is adding ~30M more each year. Most developed countries are between 75% and 95% connected. That leaves little room for growth. more

O3b Satellite Internet - Today and Tomorrow

I have written a lot about the potential of low-Earth orbit (LEO) satellites for Internet service, but have not said much about medium-Earth orbit (MEO) satellites - until now. O3b (other three billion) is an MEO-satellite Internet service provider. Greg Wyler founded the company, and it was subsequently acquired by SES, a major geostationary-orbit (GSO) satellite company. (Wyler moved on to found future LEO Internet service provider OneWeb). more

From Net Neutrality to Seizing Opportunity

Network neutrality is important in the context of assuring the opportunity to innovate in how we communicate and connect. We can't define it in terms of specific outcomes but rather in terms of what we enable. The Internet is just one example of what we can do when given the opportunity to use software to fashion our own solutions... I thought about this more when I found myself in my hospital room (after knee surgery) unable to open and close the shades by myself. But yet I could control the lights in my house! more

The Magical Ampersand: Hope Is Not an Integration Plan

In a software-defined and virtualised world, who will integrate the complex dynamic systems, and take responsibility for the result? It is unclear if telcos have the skills, but someone else likely does... The included image caught my eye whilst I was reviewing presentations from last October's Metro Ethernet Forum gathering in Florida on behalf of a consulting client. At first glance, it's just a marketing pseudo-Venn diagram peppered with telco tech buzzword bingo. But... more

Who Will Crack Cloud Application Access SLAs?

The broadband industry doesn't have an agreed-upon unit of supply and demand that meaningfully "adds up". This is rather odd for a service that aspires to be a utility. It is also a barrier to a much-needed transformation from "bit pipes" to "digital supply chain management". The chart here ought to be in every basic undergraduate textbook on packet networking and distributed computing. That it is absent says much about our technical maturity level as an industry. more

Will 5G Trigger Smart City PPP Collaboration?

As discussed in previous analyses, the arrival of 5G will trigger a totally new development in telecommunications. Not just in relation to better broadband services on mobile phones - it will also generate opportunities for a range of IoT (internet of things) developments that among other projects are grouped together under smart cities (feel free to read 'digital' or 'connected cities'). more

Automation for Physical Devices: the Holy Grail of Service Provisioning

Software-Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) are finally starting to pick up momentum. In the process, it is becoming clear that they are not the silver bullet originally advertised to be. While great for some use cases, emerging technologies like SDN and NFV have been primarily designed for virtual greenfield environments. Yet large service providers continue to run tons of physical network devices that are still managed manually. more

The New State Department Cyberspace Bureau: from Multilateral Diplomacy to Bilateral Cyber-Bullying

These days in Washington, even the most absurd proposals become the new normal. The announcement yesterday of a new U.S. State Department Cyberspace Bureau is yet another example of setting the nation up as an isolated, belligerent actor on the world stage. In some ways, the reorganization almost seems like a companion to last week's proposal to take over the nation's 5G infrastructure. Most disturbingly, it transforms U.S. diplomacy assets from multilateral cooperation to becoming the world's bilateral cyber-bully nation. more

News Briefs

US Senators Urge Canada to Drop China’s Huawei Technologies in Building Future Telecom Networks

Entire Broadband Industry Sues California Over New Net Neutrality Law

China Continues to Be at the Forefront of Fibre Adoption, Saw 26% FTTH Growth in Past 12 Months

Google's Loon Announces First Commercial Deal With Telkom Kenya to Provide Internet-by-Balloon

T-Mobile, Sprint Announce Merger Plans, Deal Will Combine 3rd and 4th Largest US Telecom Companies

Court Sides with FTC, Says AT&T Cannot Escape Jurisdiction of the Agency

A Brooklyn Bitcoin Mining Operation is Causing Interference to T-Mobile's Broadband Network

California Introduces Its Own Net Neutrality Bill; Similar Bills in Progress for WA and New York

EFF to FCC: 'Restoring Internet Freedom' Plan Riddled With Technical Errors and Factual Inaccuracies

FCC Approves Google's Project Loon Balloons for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands

Russia Appears to Have Begun Providing an Internet Connection to North Korea

The Impacts of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria on the Internet

China to Create National Cyberattack Database

China Continues VPN Crackdown, Targets Alibaba and Other Ecommerce Sites

Verizon, AT&T Speeds Slow After Unlimited Data Plans Launch

Somalia's Extended Internet Outage Results in Millions of Dollars of Loss per Day, Says Government

Over 190 Internet Engineers, Pioneers, Technologists File Comments with FCC on Net Neutrality

Cloud Leak Exposes at least 14 Million Verizon Subscribers, Phone Numbers and Account PINs Included

Chinese Scientists Have Built First Quantum Network With No Danger of Being Decrypted

European Countries Continue to Lead IPv6 Adoption, Reports Akamai

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Introductory Remarks from Innovation '08

Has the FCC Created a Stone Too Heavy for It to Lift?

Internet Governance: An Antispam Perspective

New Mobile Domain Another Bad Idea

DPI is Not a Four-Letter Word!

Industry Updates

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