Cable manufacturer ARRIS will likely turn some heads today as they demo a new system that can push 4.5 Gbps worth of download speed through a standard cable connection. Their scheme works by using newly released technology to make 128 cable channels function as a single lane through which data can travel. This certainly one-ups fiber connections, which push about one-quarter that speed.
While certainly a technical achievement, the demonstration doesn’t come with any word about whether or not it will be implemented. Rather, the release states that this demo will “help the industry explore the future frequency allocations of [Hybrid Fiber-COAX] to protect its value and viability for many years to come.” Basically, to show that there is still life in the cable Internet business. This scheme might appeal to cable companies, because while it does take away some of their channel real estate, it opens up more space for online streaming. You’ll be watching TV over the Internet, but you’d still be paying cable companies to do so.
It’s exciting to see news of faster connections finally coming to the US, but that still leaves the prohibitive cost of those speeds a major hurdle to it being embraced by the populace.
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