Feeds

Modems to get one last upgrade before death by DSL

v.92 boosts upload speeds - but not by very much

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

The analog modem has been given a reprieve from extinction at the hands of DSL, courtesy of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU).

The Geneva-based telecoms standards body has ratified a new modem standard, v.92, that promises to boost upload speeds by 40 per cent. The first products are due in Q4.

Sounds good, but in fact, it's not that hot. Current 56Kbps modems upload at around 33.6Kbps, on a very good line. The new standard simply takes that to just over 47Kbps, hardly ISDN speed, let alone DSL. And even the ITU admits that speed is only achieved on "the best connections". How many of us have those?

Download speeds remain the same: a theoretical 56Kbps, but a more practical 47Kbps on a decent line.

This minor increase in upload speed was inflated by the ITU thus: "[It] will further improve the Internet users experience by significantly reducing connect times and providing improved access to new Internet services."

John Magill, chairman of the ITU working party said the testing process should be begin in the next few weeks. "I would expect products to start appearing sometime in Q4," he said.

The new standard does appear to reduce the time it takes for modems to handshake, which should allow users to log on to the Net more quickly. It also allows modems to cope with call waiting signals so that single-line owners can elect to answer voice calls and still stay connected to the Net.

More importantly, though, the group behind the v.92 standard announced a new modem data compression standard, v.44, which it reckons will improve data throughput rates from the current 150-200Kbps to 300Kbps. Not quite DSL, it's true, but it doesn't require changes to you home phone line.

Maybe, but it's hard to see surfers willing to pay out for a slightly faster analog modem when DSL seems so damn close. That said, if the way BT is rolling out that technology in the UK, there may yet be room in the market for a final analog modem upgrade.

Additional reporting by Lucy Sherriff®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?
Compulsory code schools, luvvies love it, but what about Maths and Physics?
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
'Cowardly, venomous trolls' threatened with TWO-YEAR sentences for menacing posts
UK government: 'Taking a stand against a baying cyber-mob'
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.