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Is the Internet About to get Faster?

Author:

I hope so. Read this promising story from Japan.

The rocket carrying the WINDS satellite — a joint project of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries — lifted off its pad at 5:55 p.m. (0855 GMT).

If the technology proves successful, subscribers with small dishes will connect to the Internet at speeds many times faster than what is now available over residential cable or DSL services.

This raises a couple of questions. First Why isn’t NASA working on this?

Second who else remembers when moving from Dial up to DSL felt like going from riding in a horse and buggy to a formula one car?

**update**

Bummer. Within minutes of writing this post Fractals of Change burst my bubble:

The satellite’ll be good for email; it’s a good backup to oceanic fiber that seems to be getting cut lately.  It will NOT do what the Japanese Agency’s press release says

these satellites won’t be good for interactive gaming (as Slashdot points out) and that they’ll be terrible for VoIP; they also won’t work well for web browsing. That matters! 

latency is very often MORE important than bandwidth in determining the quality of Internet experience. Anyone who thinks geostationary satellites are an acceptable way to bring broadband to rural areas doesn’t understand how the modern web works.

If you would like to learn something about how the web works read the whole thing.

**related**

Read Fred Wilson’s explanation why Techmeme is so important.

DSL reports finds some possible uses for this new satellite technology.


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