Byte Me Article 243 – Internet Connections Continued

Need for Speed is Snowballing

Following on from last weeks’ article about Internet speeds, today we address the question “why all the fuss”.  We have already seen Internet speeds increase from 40kbps to around 10000kbps for the majority of Australians in the last 15 years.  The flipside here is the rate at which we find new uses for an Internet connection.

Previous Internet connections were for simple emails and light Internet browsing.  Modern Internet connections are desired for large multimedia rich emails, carrying voice only phone calls, carrying voice and video phone calls, teleconference calls, heavy duty Internet browsing, watching YouTube movies, watching standard or high definition movies, downloading music, streaming music, downloading huge computer updates, downloading new software as well as software updates, carrying video surveillance & for cloud computing and cloud storage.

While a 40kbps connection once served us well, we now need as much Internet speed as we can get.  Watching a low resolution movie can use 2000kbps and around 10000kbps for a 1080p movie and downloads of Windows updates and most common software will use almost as much Internet as you can muster.  It is easy to see why increasingly higher speeds are needed for modern Internet habits.

As I have stated in previous articles, typical Australian Internet speeds are way behind those in most parts of the Western World & next on the horizon we have a little thing called the ‘Internet of things’!  What will the Internet of Things do for us?  This is the currently vied future trend of hooking many household and industry based electrical machines to the Internet.

Many manufacturers are developing technologies to hook their wares to the Internet for a multitude of reasons such as firmware updates, servicing, research, fault finding & for our own convenience.  As an example you may find a barcode scanner on the inside door of your fridge so if you are grabbing the last milk bottle you can automatically reorder more by swiping it as it leaves the fridge.  Alternatively your car may set up a booking with your mechanic when it senses it needs a service – to be confirmed by you.

The ‘Internet of things’ is a suggested transition from where we are now to a further point of convenience and automation which is supposed to free more of our time away from mundane or easily forgotten tasks.  Obviously it will put further ‘load’ on our Internet connections – but can you stop progress?  I can almost hear some of the naysayers already protesting!

Could some of the same naysayers have also protested about life threating inventions such as microwave ovens and mobile phones?  Technology will always progress and for the most we fight a losing battle if we try to resist it.  Viewed from a different perspective – some of these new conveniences are simply things that have always been missing from our lives too!

The Internet of things will never be a point in time event, but rather a gradual progression to link devices that can be remotely controlled, monitored or have information sourced from them to their manufacturers, service agents or suppliers in a bid to ‘help’ the end user.  The obvious way to link them is via an Internet connection.

What I am trying to demonstrate is that the future growth and health of our Australian economy is largely reliant on the strength and speed of our Internet network.  The NBN has already had a very rocky start and recent announcements create a cloud of doubt about future successful implementation.

Next week we will look at the latest rounds of changes & dates purported by our current government and NBN Co. 

Future Byte Me topics can be emailed to [email protected] and Bruce is contactable at Kerr Solutions, 205 Musgrave Street or on 49 222 400.

For more advice and assistance from Kerr Solutions, like and follow us on Facebook