More on the telecom-transportation tradeoff (but none of this is possible without good broadband)


Posted by Rohan Samarajiva on July 22, 2008  /  2 Comments

There’s nothing like increasing fuel prices to generate telecom-transportation tradeoff stories. This is very promising stuff for people like us live 3.5 hours flying time from anyplace important. But none of these innovations can work here until we get decent quality on our broadband links. Has anyone tried skype videoconferencing other than in Singapore or Europe?

As Travel Costs Rise, More Meetings Go Virtual – NYTimes.com

As travel costs rise and airlines cut service, companies large and small are rethinking the face-to-face meeting — and business travel as well. At the same time, the technology has matured to the point where it is often practical, affordable and more productive to move digital bits instead of bodies.

The emerging trend, analysts say, goes well beyond a reaction to rising travel costs and a weakening economy. “These technology tools are going to change the way corporations think about travel and work in the long run,” an analyst at Forrester Research, Claire Schooley, said.

Past predictions that technology could replace travel have been frequent and premature. The main difference today, analysts say, is that the technology is finally catching up to its promise. No single breakthrough explains the progress, but rather a series of step-by-step advances — and steady investment — in telecommunications networks, software and computer processing.

2 Comments


  1. Chanuka Wattegama

    Investments for submarine cables
    Internet users in developed world benefit from the infrastructure expansions during the dot com boom when investors were convinced (wrongly, to a large extent) about an exponential increases in data traffic. This made them building even redundant capacity. Increasing capacity is easy when laying fiber as the cost of 1 Mbps link and 100 Mbps link is not that different. This resulted huge capacities of dark fiber which are being used now.

    No such phenomenon seen in the developing world. So cannot think the international broadband capacity will increase unless somebody wants to take a crazy bet on India and China – which is possible.

    A link worth reading: http://www.economist.com/business/displaystory.cfm?story_id=11413254