Boris Mann

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CNET: VoIP top priority for Bell Canada in 2004

  • Created: December 18, 2003
  • VoIP

Another VoIP article to fan the flames. The chosen quote shows how this is actually mis-titled:

Michael Sabia, chief executive officer of the Canadian Baby Bell, outlined his company's strategy for moving all of its communications services onto an IP-based communications network.

The distinction here being that they are moving their core network to IP. Well duh! This does not mean VoIP -- it means that inside the core, all the traffic (even if it starts life as analog) gets shunted over IP, instead of continuing to use analog connections.

But it seems like there are some end-user plans as well. Read on.

Bell Canada plans to launch a consumer VoIP trial in early 2004, and it will also progress with IP TV trials. The company plans to more aggressively market VoIP services to small and midsize businesses.

I think "aggressively market" is code for "make prices less ridiculous". The IP TV fits with Bell's goals of being a converged communications carrier. They already offer Bell ExpressVu satellite services today.

I continue to say that getting video to the home isn't the tricky part -- it gets hard when you want to start pushing some fairly large video streams around the home to multiple devices: I did a study on in-home distribution methods, and there are cost and/or bandwidth issues with every technology in use today (e.g. what significant other is going to allow Ethernet cables tacked along walls throughout the house? Never mind the cost of installing those cables...).

The other issue used to be the backplane capacity of the DSLAMs being used -- the switch that connected DSL customers to the larger network didn't have a large enough upstream connection to support the required number of video streams. I'm assuming that's been solved.

Basically, once you start pushing converged services into a home, the need for a home server, home gateway, multimedia PC, etc. etc. becomes greater. Something "smart" that sits at the edge of the service provider network and the home network.

And yes, Rogers is doing the VoIP thing too, although they've specifically said it won't be here until 2005.