Verizon FiOS Will Soon Install 300 Mbps Up and 65 Mbps Down Broadband In Homes, But You Need To Be Where FiOS Is Available And Have Mad Cash!

English: A map of where Verizon Fios is availa...

English: A map of where Verizon Fios is available in the US according to (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m so excited about Verizon big push for faster broadband.  Verizon is going to allow some home users to purchase broadband plan which has 300 Mbps download speed and 65 Mbps upload speed.  Nonetheless, did you notice I used the key words “some home users?”  I’ve been waiting for Verizon FiOS in my area for a long time already, but so far only AT&T and Comcast are the two viable competitive choices for me.  So, it’s exciting for me to see Verizon FiOS to allow 300 down and 65 up broadband speed (in Mbps of course), but it’s such a teaser for so many users who are not living in the areas where they can get Verizon FiOS.  Arstechnica reported that Verizon 300/65 up/down FiOS with two year contract will cost around $204.99.  Obviously, the latest and fastest Verizon FiOS speed is super cool, but the price is too expensive.  Nonetheless, if you are going for Verizon FiOS 300/65 up/down broadband speed, you will not have any trouble of using the cloud for doing data backup.  CrashPlan come to mind anyone?  (I hate how most broadband connections allow super slow upload speed, therefore doing backup to the cloud is like watching a crawling of a snail.  In my opinion, Verizon FiOS is the panacea to this pet peeve of mine.)  Check out the video on Verizon soon to be the fastest broadband yet in U.S. right after the break.


Can Comcast Ditching 250 GB Data Cap Be A Sign For A Future Of Which The Old Media Becomes The Radio Of Today?

Picture of a Comcast service vehicle taken in ...

Picture of a Comcast service vehicle taken in an open area from a public street in Macomb, Illinois 61455 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

PCMAG reported that Comcast will ditch the 250GB data cap for their customers soon, because Comcast is exploring the option of increasing the data cap beyond 250GB.  When questioned, Comcast refused to say that people needed more bandwidth, instead they said nowadays it simply makes sense to have their customers with bigger data cap since online videos are becoming evermore popular.  In my opinion, I think sooner or later, the ISP industry will get evermore competitive and people will use more data than the data cap allows.  The people who need more bandwidth will just have to leave the ISPs that do not provide bigger data cap.

Google might speed up the adoption of which to abandon the data cap altogether.  Obviously, I’m looking at how Google is providing 100 times faster than today Internet connection speed for Kansas City, KS and Kansas City, MO.  Perhaps, once Google thinks that they will reap even more profits by providing ultra fast fiber broadband beyond Kansas City, KS and Kansas City, MO., then the competition will definitely push more ISPs to rethink about data cap logic.

Sure, Google has deeper intention for offering ultra fast fiber broadband.  I think Google wants to make sure they have the experience in providing ISP service, because Google never knows that they might need to roll out their very own ISP service to just about anyone who relies on Google services.  Perhaps, Google fears that one day ISPs will be able to dictate what people can watch and download over the Internet.  If such a day will happen, Google’s ultra fast fiber broadband will be able to aid Google in providing Google whatever services over the web to just about anybody as usual.  Google will always be the master of its own Internet services!

Google is so depending on the Internet for its prosperity, therefore no matter is too small to be overlooked when it comes to how Google does business over the Internet — ultra fast fiber broadband service/experiment is definitely a defensive and possibly an offensive strategy.  I don’t think Google ultra fast fiber broadband has data cap, but I’m not sure.  Nonetheless, I think Google wants to promote a future where data can roam just about anywhere without being restrained by the data cap limitation.  It makes sense, because Google core business relies on unrestrained Internet.  One good example would be YouTube.  Sure, Adwords is what making Google the most money, but YouTube, in the near future, might be the most important medium of which to allow Google to increase its core business might (i.e., Internet advertising — Adwords and Adsense).  Of course, nobody would know for sure that YouTube will play out as we think Google has hoped, but at the rate of everyone is slowly ditching the traditional TV for online media — it’s only a matter of time when online media will rule the world and the traditional media (i.e., TV) has to become something like the radio of today.  So, in order for Google to prosper in the upcoming media order, Google has to make sure that YouTube will become evermore popular and people will want to stream YouTube videos evermore.

Google’s YouTube might be so powerful as to how it will attract advertising dollars like nobody has ever seen something like it before.  How come?  Imagine regular TVs will tune into YouTube channels and not the traditional TV channels.  Such a future is probably where YouTube wants to be!  I think such a future for YouTube is very very possible!  Google is creating and promoting original TV type of contents for YouTube, therefore this sort of actions from Google confirms the importance of YouTube in regarding to Google’s media/advertising business.

Google is probably not the only one who thinks about how important it is for folks to be able to use the Internet without data cap, because there are so many other companies out there whose sole business relies entirely on the Internet.  Especially Netflix, because Netflix relies on the ISPs not to tighten the data cap as Netflix customers need to be able to stream Netflix movies.  Eventually, the old media will see that it’s futile to hold back the wave of the new media, therefore I think data cap strategy is too narrow.  Even the ISPs will be able to profit hugely when data cap limitation will no longer be around.  How come?  Like I had mentioned earlier, people will just have to leave the ISPs that are not providing them enough bandwidth.  Some of you might argue that people might not be able to leave their old ISP, because there won’t be a second ISP within the same broadband coverage area.  Well, I think such thinking will be outdated.  How come?  We can just take a look at Google ultra fast fiber broadband experimentation and know that the future for ISP industry will be a lot more competitive.  I sure hope the future will allow people to have a lot more choice of choosing an ISP, and I think we are heading for such a future anyway.  This is why data cap is just too narrow of a strategy — a strategy which will make ISP industry looks petty and the rest look eager to push ahead for a brighter better broadband/Internet future.

Afterthought:  I don’t think to do away with data cap is to encourage piracy.  People who want to pirate are the people who will never pay for the things that they want to pirate in the first place, therefore forcing onto them with data cap plans is like asking them to be more prudent with what they want to pirate.  Furthermore, people who have great technological knowledge might hack into various networks so they can use such networks’ resources (e.g., bandwidth, storage space) for their piracy activities anyway.  This is why data cap is senseless for a future that relies evermore on a busier Internet/broadband highways.


ISPs Should Not Be Policing Web Traffic, Because Privacy Matters!

Arstechnica reports that RIAA and ISPs will monitor your web traffic, starting in the second quarter of this year (i.e., 2012).  I feel this is a very wrong approach to stop online piracy!  Online piracy isn’t terrorism, and so we should not use this draconian measure in an effort to weed out online piracy, because this will make online privacy even worse than how it’s now (i.e., some social networks might be too eager to implement web features that strip away better online privacy).

Do I have to worry about my normal web traffic being monitored by ISPs?  Of course, normal web traffic has nothing to be worried about being flagged as traffic of pirating contents, but I have the feeling that people might not feel so good of knowing they’re being watched constantly.  It’s the same idea as I do not want my phone company to listen into every conversation I have had or will have with my folks.

God knows what they might do with such phone conversations, right?  They might store my phone conversations forever!  I might have nothing to hide, but I might fear I do sound stupid during those conversations and do not ever want to be reminded of.  Sure, they might not or if ever reveal those phone conversations of mine to anyone or even me, but do I want to know that they have my stupid phone conversations on record forever or however long?

You see, it’s logical for people to fear that they’re being watched as if they are guilty of something even though they have done nothing wrong!  I don’t think people will be happy if they know their ISPs are constantly watching them for the sake of the entertainment industry — but not every customer of each ISP is the customer of the entertainment industry — therefore not everyone who is the customer of an ISP should be subjected to be scrutinized for the sake of the entertainment industry!

If I’m wrong on all points, I still think ISPs’ customers deserve to be treated as customers and not some criminals from the start!  What do you think?  You can check out Arstechnica’s RIAA and ISPs to police your traffic this summer (updated) article/report to read more on ISPs to monitor your web traffic.

Save Your Money By Using Your ISP’s Security Product

Symantec headquarters in Cupertino, California.

Image via Wikipedia

To my current knowledge, several broadband and cable companies are giving out free Internet Security software to their customers.  AT&T customers can download McAfee Internet Security for free; Comcast customers can download Norton Security Suite for free.  Other broadband and cable companies might have their own security products as well, and so nowadays I don’t think it’s necessary for users who use broadband and cable to buy their own Internet Security software.

If you aren’t sure about being able to download free security product from your Internet service provider, you can call your ISP and ask about their free security product.  Of course, you can always switch to a better ISP that provides you top of the line security product.  If you think your ISP is faster and cheaper than any other ISP and yet you can’t download a free security product, then I guess you need to buy a standalone security product from a well known security company such as Symantec and stay loyal to your ISP.

In conclusion, broadband and cable companies such as AT&T are doing a great job in protecting their customers by providing free security software.  The Internet is somewhat less hazardous to huge pools of people who can download and install free security products from their ISPs.  So, don’t you go out and waste money on a standalone security product before you ask your ISP for a similar product first, OK?  Good luck!

Comcast Is Upping Its Internet Connection Speed To 105 Megabits Per Second. Should Comcast Raise Its Data Limit For Customers With Blinding Speed Internet Connection?

Comcast is upping its game by rolling out the fastest Internet connection speed in its entirely history.  OK, read that carefully, because Comcast isn’t the company who has the fastest Internet connection plan, because Verizon FiOS has an even faster Internet connection plan.  Still, the new Internet connection plan is at 105 megabits per second.  That is a lot faster than what I’ve now.  I’m using Uverse AT&T which is only at 23 megabits per second.

OK, faster Internet connection is important, but how about getting rid of data cap too.  Comcast has a Terms of Service page where it describes that each user cannot go over 250GB of bandwidth per month.  Majority of people probably won’t ever go over the 250 GB/month data limit, but few will do.  The problem is that if Comcast is capable of providing bandwidth to millions of customers, why only the few customers that are going over the data limit can be concerned as the problem of everything?

The irony of everything about having a faster Internet connection is that you can’t really use it to your liking!  How is that?  The faster Internet connection the more you can do, but the more you do the more bandwidth you will use.  You get the gist!  Use too much bandwidth and Comcast will contact you to tell you that you have past your data limit.  Could it be it’s more profitable to have customers go pass their data limits?

Why oh why the 250 GB/month data limit reminds me so much of the old day when a professor of my college told the class that nobody should need more than 70 GB of hard drive space or so.  Look where we at nowadays, we can’t even find a mechanical hard drive in store that is less than 100 GB of space (SSD drive is entirely a different matter for this point in time).  Instead, there are shelves of 1 to 2 terabyte mechanical hard drives for sale.  The argument is that these broadband companies should not treat their customers like fools, because the customers deserve bigger data limits so they can really use their super fast Internet to do their things the right way.

It’s awesome for Comcast to raise its Internet speed, but it’s time for Comcast to lead the pack by upping its data limit or get rid of it altogether for good.  Do you think Comcast should get rid of its data limit so customers can really use the faster Internet connection the right way?  Or how about this, should Comcast raise data limit for customers who purchase faster Internet connection plans?


Kinect Removes The Controllers, Allowing You To Interact With Xbox 360 In A Way That Makes All Other Gadgets and Gaming Console and Devices In The Market Jealous

Italiano: Xbox 360 Slim with Kinect

Italiano: Xbox 360 Slim with Kinect (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Kinect is coming out this November, that means it’s around the corner.  Xbox 360 users will have something to brag about over all other game consoles.  It’s a Microsoft technology that allows you to use Xbox 360 without using any controller.  Basically, to control Xbox 360,  all you have to do is to use everything that you have as a person such as your hands, feet, face, whole body, and voice.  Kinect’s sensor can see objects in 3D.  Facial recognition is also another awesome thing that Kinect can do.

The new Xbox 360 S model is Kinect ready, and by this I mean you don’t have to buy a special power supply cable to get Kinect to work, but the older Xbox 360 model requires the special power supply cable.  It seems Kinect requires a lot more power than Xbox 360’s USB port could handle as in providing the extra power to Kinect, but the newest Xbox 360 S model has a special AUX port for this purpose — the special power supply cable would act as the special AUX port for the older Xbox 360 model which shares the role in supplying power with USB port.

Playing games, watching movies, listening to music, and video chatting with another person over the Internet are something that you will do without using any controller when using Kinect with Xbox 360.  Imagine when you have to fight a monster boss using Kinect, you have to be active such as kicking your feet up in the air, ducking your whole body, and so forth.  It can be a good workout!  Voice activation is quite sweet as you can make Xbox 360 does things for you with your voice.  Kinect is cool as it takes away the controllers and allow your interaction with the machine in a very futuristic way and natural.

I can’t help but feel sad that my favorite technologies are spreading across different brand, and these cannot be compatible with each other.  For an example, I anticipate Google TV, but imagine you can use Kinect with Google TV — it would be way cooler than just using Google TV itself.  PS3 is a gaming console that I like more than Xbox 360, but Kinect is interesting enough that I wish I could marry PS3 and Kinect together!  The list can go on and on for Kinect as its futuristic ability makes it quite hard to ignore.  I also read at Wikipedia that in the future, Kinect may come out for PC users (i.e., Windows 8).  As Kinect technology gets improve through time, I surmise that in the future, Kinect will shrink in size.  Right now, Kinect is already a small device as it’s barely larger than an Xbox controller when placing them side by side.  Check out how large Kinect in the pictures seen on Gizmodo.

Check out the video below to see Kinect in action: