….and why ISPs will never be the same.
By now news of Google's plans to enter the ISP business are over a week old.Wired had a great article on it here:
http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2010/02/google-isp/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+wired%2Findex+%28Wired%3A+Index+3+%28Top+Stories+2%29%29&utm_content=Google+Feedfetcher Ars Technica had another here:
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2010/02/your-new-isp-google-launches-1gbps-fiber-to-the-home-trial.ars Why there should be a continued interested about this is that because it's Google and when Google enters a market, it usually destroys traditional ways of making money. Where existing ISPs are concerned this can be a very good thing. Existing ISPs want to find ways to measure internet traffic, and charge users by levels — even as their own upstream bandwidth costs continue to plummet. The rhetoric used to justify those decisions to consumer and lawmakers just won’t hold up if there’s an fairly priced, all-Fiber 1 Gbps connection just down the road. The following info graphic comparing ISP services is worldwide is very telling: Notice where Canada sits. Google's 1GB fibre can't help but put at least mild pressure on other ISPs. Once people recognize that 1Gbps are available in the real world today at a "competitive price" (Google's words), they're going to take a look at their own speed/price tier and start asking some hard questions. In a land where it costs “$35 a month to get an asymmetric, slow DSL line that tops out at 1.5 Mbps, perhaps those traditional profits need to be destroyed. And perhaps Google can inject some much needed ethics, competition and net neutrality ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Network_neutrality ) back into an overly innefective, monoplistic and backwards thinking market place that we find ourselves in. Existing ISPs aren't doing anything wrong……. for their business models. Its just that their business models (like those of the recording industry, and hollywood) are outdated and about to undergo an upheaval. Existing ISPs know all about net neutrality and choose to circumvent it. In Canada Rogers, the most evil and unethical ISP has been guilty of falsely advertising their service, throttling traffic mostly on P2P networks ( http://www.fastcompany.com/blog/chris-dannen/techwatch/google-guide-infuriating-your-isp ) and inserting themselves into customers web experience ( http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2007/12/canadian-isps-p/ ) Existing ISPs view the internet as a "series of tubes" ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Series_of_tubes ), a series of tubes that effectively funnels money from you to them. They are only motivated to improve access and performance of their networks when there is direct competition. Without competition (as in Rogers and Bell) it makes no sense at all for them to do anything other then keep cashing monthly access checks. Google, however, has a very different business model. Their model is basically tied to the performance of the internet. They need everyone to have fast hi-bandwidth access to the internet. In fact, they need it so much they are willing to fund it. This is what makes Google such a game changer. And also it is what aligns them so well (for now) with the needs of the market. They need what we need. A super fast, reliable network, available to everyone, everywhere. You can see this motivation in a lot of their recent announcements, like their DNS offering, and Chrome, Android etc. It is motivated by a desire to get more internet into more hands. Google's business model frees them from the constraints that face almost all their competitors, and as a result they are blowing up markets left and right. I see no reason why the broadband market will be any different. And I see no reason why 1GB fibre won't be well received, or its user base grow. It may be slow at first, but it will be unstoppable. Ars Technia had another article titled "How to be the world's greatest ISP" :
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2009/12/the-coolest-isp-in-the-world.ars?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rss It pointed out the aforementioned shortcomings of the existing ISPs and it looks like Google would be well on the way to reaching these goals. For all of us who are under the thumbs of Robbers and Bell, we shout "Bring it!"