Japan Is Future Internet Ready
It’s time for our periodic We-Suck-At-Internet rant, which entails comparing and despairing (thanks, Stewart Smalley) over how slow the Internet is in the US. Once again, Japan has us beat and is ready for next-generation applications like high-quality video streaming. But Slovenia? Lithuania? Latvia? They’re faster than us, too?
Not to lump them in with Japan in terms of broadband speed. No, Japan’s in a class all its own, and deemed the only nation in the world that is future-ready, according to a study sponsored by Cisco. Don’t feel too bad. The UK, Spain, and Italy weren’t even deemed present-ready; networks in those countries don’t quite meet spec for the current YouTube generation and all that capacity-draining web browsing, e-mail and basic video downloading and streaming.
The top 10 list in quality broadband is as follows:
The Netherlands may move up a spot or two thanks to some recent municipal efforts to lay not just fiber to the house, but fiber-to-the-houseboat capable of delivering one gigabit per second. Meanwhile, similar municipal efforts to set up a fiber network in a Minnesota town are stalled by a lawsuit filed by the very company the town was ticked off at because of crappy broadband.
Telcos and cable companies across the US have tried to block similar municipal efforts for some time now, which may be part of the reason countries in the former Soviet Bloc are crushing us. Latvia? Lithuania? Slovenia? Really?
There is some hope of getting future-ready Internet in time for the future (see, it can’t come early because ISPs can’t just go upgrading everybody to the good stuff all at once—where’s the smart business model in that?); Tom Steinert-Threlkel at ZDNet seems pretty excited about the New York area getting 100 Mbps.
It seems rather obvious ISPs across the US have no intention of getting us super fast Internet until we really need super fast Internet, and that will be when they decide we need it, not us. Until then, there’ll be bandwidth caps and metered broadband in a theoretical world of unlimited but not available broadband capacity, lawsuits against citizens trying to hurry things along, lobbyists manipulating the ineffectual shills in the FCC into believing no regulation is necessary (Japan’s future-now system was the direct result of regulation, by the way) because the completely controlled free market will fix it, you know eventually, while hoping the legislature continues to be forgetful about the $200 billion given to them twelve years ago to build out broadband by two years ago that they spent on long distance instead.
Sigh. If you need us, we’ll be hanging out with Mexico and Turkey, but don’t expect a response too fast, though.