BROADBAND COMMUNITIES is the leading source of information on digital and broadband technologies for buildings and communities. Our editorial aims to accelerate the deployment of Fiber-To-The-Home and Fiber-To-The-Premises.
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10 | BROADBAND COMMUNITIES | www.broadbandcommunities.com | MARCH/APRIL 2014 METRICS Network Speed Versus Network Management Bandwidth management will always be required to manage peak usage, but Internet service providers can no longer aford to ignore the need for speed. By David Daugherty / Korcett Holdings Inc. D oes size really matter? Recently, and in some cases disingenuously, Internet service providers have touted big bandwidth with the underlying message that the larger the data pipe, the better the service. Consumer demands are certainly growing, and these demands are creating a new service environment. As the Internet is applied to an ever growing range of commerce, consumers are constantly testing the edge of the performance envelope. Demand for the latest generation of 4K TV, for example, will require four times current HD streaming rates. Netfix launched its 4K service earlier this year and is able to stream 4K video at roughly 15 Mbps. Te resultant service problems have created a challenging environment for the development and delivery of new services. Some ISPs have begun to introduce managed services in high-density housing to help address declining customer satisfaction with bulk services. As it turns out, this is a microcosm for the design and management of Internet services within a metropolitan area network (MAN). As a result, ISPs are beginning to apply what they learn about managing bulk services in high-density housing to commercial customers within MANs. Te impact of extending standard managed services in both residential and commercial markets is both elegant and cost-efective for ISPs. It reduces their total cost of ownership and improves proftability across a wide range of markets. RAPIDLY CHANGING DEMAND As the demand for more reliable, cost-efective Internet access increases, consumers' patience with poorly performing service is dwindling. Service problems are emerging because consumers are using more computing devices, consuming more video (constant-bit-rate trafc) and moving toward wireless connectivity for the last 100 feet. Subscriber computing devices include desktop computers, laptop computers and handheld (mobile) devices. Most desktop computers come equipped with a gigabit network interface card (NIC); mobile devices typically incorporate NICs restricted to 100 Mbps or less. As the majority of Internet demand originates with mobile devices, most subscribers don't have the equipment to consume a gigabit of bandwidth. Increasing demand for constant-bit-rate trafc (video), however, is a game changer. It increases the percentage of constant-bit- rate trafc during peak usage hours to a level that will usually break network over- subscription ratios (OSRs). Te OSR is the ratio of bandwidth provided to bandwidth sold. Tis ratio is well understood by ISPs and is the reason most ISPs incorporate "up to" language in service agreements. For example, BBC_Mar14.indd 10 3/14/14 2:45 PM