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Cisco Predicts Four-Fold Growth in IP Traffic Over Next Four years

WASHINGTON June 2, 2011 – Cisco predicted the next four years of global broadband consumption via virtual forum when it unveiled its annual visual networking index Wednesday.

Each year Cisco produces a networking index that predicts internet use and broadband consumption for the next five years. While a number of firms produce similar reports, Cisco’s has consistently proven among the most accurate in recent years.

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WASHINGTON June 2, 2011 – Cisco predicted the next four years of global broadband consumption via virtual forum when it unveiled its annual visual networking index Wednesday.

Each year Cisco produces a networking index that predicts internet use and broadband consumption for the next five years. While a number of firms produce similar reports, Cisco’s has consistently proven among the most accurate in recent years.

“By doing the report annually we are able to compare our projections to the actual data,” said Suraj Shetty, vice president of global service provider marketing, Cisco. “On average our projections were six to seven percent lower than the actual data.”

Projected Data Growth 2010-2015

This year’s index projects that globally Internet traffic will grow four fold between 2010 and 2015. By 2015, the model portends global traffic will be 80.5 exabytes per month, which is equivalent 17 billion DVDs worth of traffic.  In comparison, last year saw 20.2 exabytes of data transmitted per month.

According to Cisco, high definition video will likely see the fastest growth of any content type.  The report predicts HD video will grow to 60 percent of all consumer internet traffic by 2015; currently HD video only makes up 40 percent of traffic.

The index also predicts mobile broadband will soon become the main method by which consumers connect to the Internet, using not only tablets, smartphones and computers, but also via Internet-connected appliances and devices such as Blu-ray players, televisions and refrigerators.  In North America, the index shows a third of all networked devices will be mobile-connected in 2015.

John Horrigan, Vice President, Policy Research at TechNet said that the world is on the “cusp of the Internet of things – where most of our devices will be connected to the Internet.”

With the predicted large growth in mobile broadband, Blair Levin, Communications & Society Fellow at the Aspen Institute, warned that the U.S. needs to develop a way to reallocate spectrum before the country faces a shortage.

“Every nation needs a plan on how to reorganize or reallocate its spectrum,” Levin said. “If we don’t come up with a plan soon that will work, eventually the government will just take away spectrum from some users and give it others.”

To sustain large growth in data consumption, Cisco projects equally large growth in broadband speeds. The average broadband speed in North America will go from 7.5 megabits per second (Mbps) in 2010 to 27 Mbps in 2015.  In comparison, Asia and the Pacific will see the largest growth in speed though from 5.5 Mbps in 2010 to 25 Mbps in 2015. Mobile is also expected to catch up to current fixed line speeds with a projected average global mobile broadband speed of 5 Mbps.

Growth in speed and traffic is not without its downsides, however, said Carlos Rodriguez, manager of regulatory affairs at Telefónica USA. Unless telecommunications firms adjust their business models soon, according to Rodriguez costs will outpace revenue.

“Costs grow as traffic across the networks grows, but revenues have been stagnating,” Rodriguez said. “If not changed, we may face a period where firms are simply unable to invest in improving network infrastructure due to a lack of funding.”

Currently, 80 percent of overall network traffic is consumed by 10 percent of users. Rodriguez suggested that telecommunications providers might have to switch from an unlimited model to offering users different usage levels.

The full report along with an interactive map on broadband data consumption can be found here.

Rahul Gaitonde has been writing for BroadbandBreakfast.com since the fall of 2009, and in May of 2010 he became Deputy Editor. He was a fellow at George Mason University’s Long Term Governance Project, a researcher at the International Center for Applied Studies in Information Technology and worked at the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. He holds a Masters of Public Policy from George Mason University, where his research focused on the economic and social benefits of broadband expansion. He has written extensively about Universal Service Fund reform, the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program and the Broadband Data Improvement Act

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Huawei’s Success In China A Win For Washington, Expert Says

The Chinese telecom giant is finding greater financial success on home turf, keeping it away from the U.S.

Benjamin Kahn

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Photo of Scott Malcomson via Inc.com

April 16, 2021— The Biden administration’s current maintenance of the previous government’s policy on isolating Chinese technology companies is appearing to pay off, according to experts.

Huawei, which has become the American symbol of alleged Chinese espionage, has seen increasing success in its home country of China, which is where the U.S. wants it to stay, experts say.

“The more you isolate Chinese tech companies, the more the [Chinese] government keeps them at home,” said “Splinternet” author and journalist Scott Malcomson at a Techonomy panel on Wednesday. He added that this strategy is beginning to pay off, citing the Chinese market now being more profitable for Huawei than going abroad.

The United States has instituted a number of restrictions against Chinese telecommunications companies like Huawei and ZTE, which has forced these companies to pivot.

He described China’s “soup to nuts” effort to establish a completely independent network: everything from satellites, to undersea fiberoptics, to e-commerce companies—China’s primary goal was to be able to handle all these sectors domestically.

Joy Tran, who is senior vice president of public affairs for Huawei Technologies USA,  corroborated the company’s domestic success, saying the Chinese market is now the biggest part of Huawei’s portfolio, which makes up 65 percent of its global revenue.

But Tran also said the company has always been completely compliant with Chinese and American law. “The US government really never told us about their concerns—we don’t understand [why Huawei is restricted from U.S. networks].”

Tran stated that Huawei has never had any “cybersecurity related issues,” and pointed to Huawei’s long-term operation in the U.K. as evidence that Huawei is not a bad-faith actor. Huawei also has deep relationships with academic and government institutions in Canada, which is the only country in the Five Eyes intelligence pact – which includes the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, Australia – that has yet to make a determination about whether to ban Huawei from parts of its 5G networks.

Security concerns with Huawei

Tran also attempted to dispel the notion that the Chinese government forced Huawei to maintain backdoors into their hardware and software for spying purposes.

Though the U.S. government has long maintained the opposite, Malcomson argued that the point was moot. “Frankly, if you have a front door, you don’t really need a back door.” Malcomson said that the backdoor argument was merely a red herring that distracted from China’s aspirations and behaviors it had engaged in over the past several years.

Zachary Karabell, another author and former head of a financial services firm, argued Wednesday that the ongoing duel between the U.S. and China over Huawei’s standing was emblematic of the entire U.S.-China relationship.

Karabell’s position is that the question needed to be reframed: the question that needs to be asked is not, “Is the U.S. spying on China and is China spying on the U.S.?” The answer is clearly, yes.

The question that Karabell believes has not been sufficiently addressed is whether the production of equipment and the location of where said equipment is produced offers a competitive edge for intelligence gathering efforts.

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Loopholes Allowing Private Purchase Of Chinese Goods Must Be Closed: Commissioner Carr

Derek Shumway

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Screenshot taken from CSIS event

April 5, 2021 – Loopholes that allow U.S. companies to use private funds to purchase equipment from Chinese-based companies like Huawei and ZTE should be closed, Federal Communications C Commissioner Brendan Carr said Tuesday.

Carr said last week at a virtual event hosted by the Center for Strategic and International Studies that while the U.S. government has been able to prevent companies from spending federal dollars on Chinese telecom equipment, legal loopholes still persist that allow companies to use private funds to purchase such equipment, leaving agencies like the FCC helpless in preventing these transactions.

Communist China has made it clear it wants to dominate the global semiconductor and chip market, and it is not opposed to using forced labor to achieve that goals. Be it garage door openers or computers, nothing should be allowed if it has ties to Uighur-related forced labor, Carr said.

“The CCP is committing genocide—crimes against humanity—in Xinjiang,” he noted.

Carr spoke broadly about the continued threats Chinese telecom equipment poses to U.S. national security interests.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken outlined the new Biden administration’s strategic vision for U.S. foreign policy and identified China as the top geopolitical challenge facing the United States.

Commissioner Carr said there are bipartisan commitments to address threats from China, and that the FCC can continue to take steps to protect the U.S.’s 5G network infrastructure, including moving to block approval of devices that contain parts made from companies with ties to “Communist China,” or forced labor from places like Xinjiang.

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FCC February Meeting Targets 911 Fee Diversion and Replacing Foreign Telecommunications Equipment

Tim White

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February 17, 2021 – The Federal Communications Commission adopted two proposals in Wednesday’s meeting: Seeking comments on rule changes for 911 fee diversion, and also the secure and trusted network reimbursement program.

The first proposal seeks comment on a 911 fee diversion rule that would define what constitutes a diversion of those funds from their intended use. Part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, passed in December 2020, requires the FCC to issue these rules. Fees from 911 are levied by state and local governments to help pay for the operating costs of emergency services, which consumers pay through their phone bills.

The rule change intends to prevent states from diverting some of those funds for purposes other than 911 operations.

“Both Congress and the commission have long recognized that 911 fees should serve 911 purposes and have worked to combat fee diversion,” said Commissioner Geoffrey Starks.

According to the FCC’s 2020 report, five states diverted over 200 million dollars from the 911 fees they collected. The vast majority of fee diversions occur in New York and New Jersey, according to National Emergency Number Association’s Brian Fontes.

The second proposal seeks comment on the secure and trusted network reimbursement program, which subsidizes funds to companies for replacing communications equipment due to national security concerns.

Several of the commissioners expressed concern about Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE technologies being used in the United States due to their ties to the Chinese government.

The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 allocated $1.9 billion to “remove, replace, and dispose of communications equipment and services that pose a national security threat,” said the FCC’s news release.

Both proposals received 4-0 affirmative votes.

Also notable during Wednesday’s meeting was Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel’s announcement of a new task force to address poor broadband mapping data. Jean Kiddoo was named chair of the task force.

During a press call following the meeting, Rosenworcel said that she supports spectrum sharing, which would allow providers to share space in certain areas of the radio wave spectrum. There are a lot of entities interested in the popular bands of the spectrum, and we need to be creative and efficient in how we use that space, she said.

Rosenworcel’s position conflicts with the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association, a trade association comprised of many communication companies, which supports exclusive access to parts of the spectrum.

Wednesday’s meeting marks the first FCC meeting chaired by Rosenworcel in her new position as acting chairwoman. She can serve in that position until President Biden puts forward a candidate to serve as chairman or chairwoman, and that candidate is confirmed by the Senate. Because Rosenworcel was already confirmed as a commissioner, she can serve in that role until her term expires.

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