updated 12:50 pm EDT, Thu May 10, 2007
Verizon, Comcast speeds
Two of the United States' most prominent Internet providers are in a race to dramtically improve broadband speeds, writes Broadband Reports. The opening stride was made earlier this week by Comcast, who demonstrated speeds of up to 150Mbps using DOCSIS 3.0 technology -- available in rare instances abroad, but essentially unseen in North America. Comcast's service will only be available in one to two years however, and initial packages will be capped substantially below their potential.
Notably, Comcast is targeting these deployments at regions served by Verizon's FiOS technology, which delivers rates up to 30Mbps through fiber-optic lines. This has prompted a response from Verizon executive John Czwartacki, who claims that with forthcoming gigabit PON (passive optical network) upgrades being installed this summer, FiOS will eventually be capable of rates up to 400Mbps. Like Comcast however, customers will not be able to jump to the top speed immediately. Czwartacki defends this, arguing that "there's nothing yet out there in wide use that can use it."