Thursday, June 18, 2009

A Digital Britian on 50p a month?


So the Digital Britain report is out and as to be expected it's trying to be all things to all men - and fails to be anything to anyone. Lord Carter will now move to a lucrative new job.
It brings public intervention to places where there should not be public intervention and yet messes with the PSB model we have .
It is a bad example of dealing with market failure.
How can anyone think that a 50p a month tax is bold or innovative or really going to change anything.
(I'm not the only person to think that the report is rubbish either).

The good news is that little in it will be actioned as the present government is only going to be in power for a few months and it does mean that we're at least thinking about the issues.

On Wednesday I saw an interesting two headed presentation on the subject - the first was a quick revision on what Digital was; the meat of the RTS London event though was a presentation by Stephen Brigden of Cisco: (here's his blog)
To note some of the big questions and stand out lines:

*BBC's iPlayer has disproved the idea that only short form video will survive in the internet.
* It's unlikely that BTs Vision walled garden offering will destroy ' over the top video' (which iplayer is an example of as are is Youtube and 4OD).
*The killer app that the ISPs were looking for is Video the problem is that it's killing the networks and the idea of a flat fee access is looking unsustainable. iPlayer is the cause of over 7% of the UK network traffic. can this live within the concept of 'net neutrality'?
*Stated service levels have little connection with reality as contention rates are seen to be bogus.
*Video over the web is not just a leisure activity - high volumes of traffic from big news stories, sport and the live budget coverage has proved this.

So as you can imagine Cisco see the solution being a better network with more of their devices and of course the NGA networks.
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