The IP Transformation Effect

Peter : On Rad's Radar?
| Peter Radizeski of RAD-INFO, Inc. talking telecom, Cloud, VoIP, CLEC, and The Channel.

The IP Transformation Effect

While the former RBOCs run pilots for the TDM-to-IP transformation that they are pushing for, the rest of the ILEC world is scrambling to figure out how it will destroy their current business model. The Rural LECs have been kept afloat by USF funds; now, those funds will be less than half and based on broadband lines instead of POTS. The whole business model is shaking up.

Voice over IP is the aftermath of consumers moving from copper to FiOS or cable modem or even cell phone over the last ten years. Where it has been easiest to deliver high speed broadband, the transformation is largely happening. However, there are too many pockets of America where high speed broadband isn't available; where technology like DSL can't deliver packets due to distance limitations; where fixed wireless can't see.

Without broadband everywhere, the IP transformation can't happen. It creates a digital divide between those with GigaBroadband and those without. Without broadband, working at home is not really possible. Without broadband, many freelance careers are not possible. So the divide becomes not only about having broadband, but having the opportunities that high speed Internet Access fuels.

I'm not talking about entertainment with Xbox of Netflix. How do you have educational parity without broadband? In urban areas, many students have migrated to tablets in place of textbooks. Without broadband, there is no way to get your homework done!

And where the IP Transformation is happening, there are ripple effects. People consume exabytes of data, especially video. These streams - video and VoIP - are real-time and have to be delivered with limited latency and jitter on networks designed for data packets - like email and websites. So the networks have to be monitored and re-configured and upgraded - even backhaul.

Other ripple effects are economic. The copper plant and its union workers become a burden on the LEC. The same techs that work on TDM are not always cross-trained for IP and fiber plant. The LECs are watching a steady decline of revenue from the copper plant; revenues which have fueled the companies for decades.

There has been a call for Broadband to be a Utility by Congress. Meanwhile, the telco groups like TIA and NCTA clamor for the status quo - even as that status quo shifts from under the members of these groups. (Still others are trying to get laws passed so governments can't build fiber networks, even in communities that the carriers will never invest.)

Regardless, the carriers have to get on the program that IP networks are the future and that broadband is an economic necessity for every community, every taxpayer. The Internet Economy is what is floating the US. Any attack on it - whether Net Neutrality, slow build outs, or high prices - will have a ripple effect on this country and its economy. I just wish they all acted like they knew that (and were working in the best interests).

Related Articles to 'The IP Transformation Effect'
Featured Events