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2.5Gb/s Internet For French Homes 536

Erick Lionheart at writes "Presence-pc at reports that France Telecom just announced they are offering 2.5 Gb/s Internet connections to select cities in the Paris region. For ... $85(70 Euros) a month you also get free phone and TV. From the article (in French): 'The historical operator opted for a GPON (Gigabit Passive Optical Network) FTTH architecture (Fiber To The Home). This technology allows up to 2.5 Gbits/s download and 1.2 Gigabits/s upload.'"
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2.5Gb/s Internet For French Homes

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  • offering 2.5 Gb/s... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by kzharv ( 175360 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @08:45AM (#15783051)
    But I notice they are using GPON. I have 1Gb/s GPON in Japan (free, comes with the body corp fees) and 1Gig aint "1Gig". Yeah looks good but I would prefer dedicated 100Meg than 2.5Gig GPON.
  • by arkhan_jg ( 618674 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @08:46AM (#15783059)
    Gah. My other half is literally moving from France today to come live with me in the UK. Now I'm considering turning her round, hitching a lift, and going to live in France!

    Holy hell, this is quicker than my Gigabit LAN. My hard-drives already aren't quick enough to saturate the network, I'm trying to imagine downloading files at 2.5Gbit/sec. The mind boggles.

  • FT (Score:5, Interesting)

    by lovebyte ( 81275 ) * <> on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @08:47AM (#15783068) Homepage
    France Telecom/Orange better improve their current offers. They are eaten alive by other ADSL providers. FT/Orange gives you 18Mb/s ADSL for 40 euros a month (includes TV channels AND NO telephone) when other providers gives you 24Mb/s for 25 to 30 euros which includes TV AND free phone calls to Europe, USA, and other countries. They lose thousands of customers per month.
    Let's hope that they'll compete by innovating, but I doubt it.
  • Sigh.... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Nonillion ( 266505 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @08:53AM (#15783110)
    And here in America, we STILL fall further and further behind in broadband. Where is this 45+ M/bit sync fiber connection the telcos promised 80%+ of Americans were supposed to have by now?
  • by SeanMon ( 929653 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @09:06AM (#15783205) Homepage Journal
    because I don't see any other way of saturating a 1.2 Gb/s connection upload, even if your entire street shares it...

    well, I guess Bittorrent might.

    I ask because I setup a Gentoo-based webserver in my house but can't open it to the world because it's against my ISP's Terms of Service.
  • Re:Define "free"? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Eivind ( 15695 ) <> on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @09:14AM (#15783261) Homepage
    Oh, I don't know. I live in Norway, and I can tell you, 2.5 Gb/s to the home is also here not available. I don't think USA is all that bad. We too have to make do with paltry 100Mbit/s connections. (they're symetrical, so it's full duplex, same speed up and down, which is some consolation.)
  • US gov fiber (Score:2, Interesting)

    by konigstein ( 966024 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @09:16AM (#15783289) Homepage
    I recently heard that when the fiber lines that are run all over the US were originally planned and put in back in the 70's/80's, it was planned for each house in the US to get FREE 150Mb fiber. I'm unable to find any documentation for this, but I'm assuming that The Telco's bought/leased it instead and are selling it to us.
  • Re:And look here: (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @09:21AM (#15783341)
    The communications companies have been using that same excuse for years. Net neutrailty, equal access, fighting over telephone pole and last mile ownership, potential for telco to send TV and cable to send phone, franchise laws, local and long distance fees.. The list goes on and on.

    We won't upgrade until this condition is met, a few years or months later, we won't upgrade our network until a different condition is met. Rinse lather repeat.

    I live to far from from the CO to use DSL. Verizon has not touched a single thing in my area for over 20 years
  • Re:2.5Gbps? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by dlZ ( 798734 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @10:06AM (#15783750) Journal
    I currently have FiOS 30/5 in my apartment. This happens to be in a very rich section of my area, where I couldn't afford to live normally. I just lucked out on this apartment. I pay $55 a month, which isn't too bad considering I paid $45 for Road Runner which was a fraction of the speed.

    The problem is we just bought a house in an area we could afford. Not the ghetto, but not an area where I compete with cars in morning rush hour that cost more than my new house, either. I probably won't have FiOS available for another year. And I am bitching, but Verizon's answer every time is that they're laying the lines down as fast as they can. *sigh*
  • Re:Define "free"? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by kabocox ( 199019 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @10:30AM (#15783956)
    I think some sort of boost is needed, but I'm not sure what. Obviously, the market is providing enough incentive to innovate and expand services.

    Um, no. The phone companies are happy soaking us for what we little bandwidth they'll sell you. I want a $15-20 a month bill that pays for Gigabit speeds up and down. I want to be able to watch IP TV and use IP telephones instead of the piece of crap system that we currently have. We should have not just full video conferencing now, but we should have hi-def video conferencing anywhere in the US by now. Our entire communications infrastructure is a disgrace.
  • Re:Sigh.... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by blurryrunner ( 524305 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @10:34AM (#15783987) Homepage
    They spent it all here in Utah :) []

    Seriously, we have FTTH here and its great. It probably covers 50 to 75% of the population center for the state. At home its 5Mb up/down with no restrictions on use. We also have it at the office which gives us 30 Mb up/down and its only $130 per month. Yesterday at work, I checked something out from sourceforge and was downloading at peak 5 MBytes per second and averaged about 2.2 MBytes per second. So its starting to come, but you have to live in Utah. :)

    Ok, so I'm gloating a little bit.

  • Re:And look here: (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Andy Dodd ( 701 ) < minus caffeine> on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @10:39AM (#15784022) Homepage
    Two words: Population density.

    I believe (I'm not totally sure but I'm reasonably confident) that both Japan and Korea have significantly higher population density than the U.S. I'm absolutely positive that continental Europe has a much higher population density than the U.S., which also happens to be why mass transit such as the French TGV and German ICE trains are so much more successful than in the U.S., where only a select few passenger routes are profitable for rail companies. (Namely, Amtrak's Northeast Corridor and not much else.) For the same reason mass transit is more practical, it's far cheaper on average to roll out last-mile infrastructure.

    Add telecom greed to that and we're screwed. That said, most of the problem is the issue of population density (or lack thereof) and the resulting high last-mile costs.

    As to why you see high prices even in cities - The U.S. has laws mandating rural telecom subsidies, effectively averaging the population density across the country as far as telecom prices are concerned.

  • AOL (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @10:48AM (#15784117)
    Why are you American's all bitching? After all you do have AOL!
  • by pr0digy25 ( 915443 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @10:54AM (#15784169)
    ...rather than building a better war machine, we too could have 2.5 Gb/s connections to the desktop.
  • Re:Define "free"? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by SpecTheIntro ( 951219 ) <spectheintro AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @10:54AM (#15784174)
    I would say that the telcos are managed quite well. They're maximizing shareholder revenue, just as any non-private corporation should be.

    Well, not [] really. [] This is a sentiment on Slashdot that sometimes makes me wonder why everyone here seems to be so anti-business. (Not that I'm accusing you of it, OldeTimeGeek--your comment just reminded me of it.) Sometimes the right business decision is also the moral one--personally, I think it always is, although if you think only in terms of profits I'm sure you could convince yourself otherwise.

    Anyhow, my point is, the decisions the subsidized companies are making are clearly losing them money. They're not innovating anymore, and their pricing isn't competitive, and as a result any time a competitor comes into the market they start losing money like wildfire. Where I live, Cavalier Telephone has made serious headway into the phone industry here, simply because they continue to drive their prices down and raise their bandwidth. (I pay $25 a month for 1Mbps/768Kbps DSL. It's rated at 10Mbps/1Mbps, but because of my loop length, I get much lower speeds. Believe it or not, it is by far the most reasonable internet access available--Verizon DSL at 768K would cost me $15 a month more, and Comcast would get me for $60 a month.) Most of the telecommunications industry consists of old, stupid companies who don't understand that real profitability doesn't mean squeezing every last dollar out of the consumer that you can--it's about providing a quality product, and standing behind it.

  • by andrewman327 ( 635952 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @11:10AM (#15784320) Homepage Journal
    I just don't see most residential homes needing to play online games while working from the corporate server through a VPN while talking on the VOIP phone while streaming YouTube and Google Video at the same time while running your personal website while backing up all of your data. I do agree that businesses would benefit tremendously from cheapening the "tubes."
  • by andrewman327 ( 635952 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @11:18AM (#15784391) Homepage Journal
    Could /. actually get /.ed?
  • by FreeUser ( 11483 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @11:57AM (#15784739)
    What country has the largest square footage of industrialized space in the world?

    Every time some other country's telco produces a better service than our own, this comes up. It didn't explain why consumers can't get 100mbps in our most dense cities, or 1gbit, and it still doesn't explain why we can't get 2.5gbps now. Even in the places that already have fiber to the home, the best I can do on FiOS is 30M/5M for $180. Meanwhile ATT seems to be giving up on SBC's fiber deployment, at least for this iteration. According to that article they're possibly hoping to come out ahead sometime in the hazy future with 100mbps connections.

    It also doesn't explain why rural canada has faster and cheaper consumer bandwidth available than downtown Chicago (I live in downtown Chicago, and what I pay $70/month for is slower than what folks I know in rural Alberta pay $25 CND for). Canada is a larger country, with less dense industrialization, and is far better wired and serviced for internet connectivity than our densely populated metropolitan city centers.

    So I call bullshit. Our position as last place among industrialized nations when it comes to Internet connectivity has absolutely nothing to do with our nation's size, and everything to do with a corrupt government in bed with corrupt telcos and corrupt copyright cartels deliberately keeping connectivity artificially slow and prices artificially high. Of course, the war spending that's putting us into record debt isn't helpful, but nor is it directly responsible.

    One of my European friends put it best. America is an interesting blend of first and third world. The sad thing is, most of us never travel and don't realize just how third world we're becoming. The rest of the world really is moving along in leaps and bounds, and we have already been left in its technological dust. But don't tell anybody...they'll label you as "unpatriotic."
  • Re:Define "free"? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by AK Marc ( 707885 ) on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @12:40PM (#15785107)
    i.e. the telcos were not only permitted, but legally MANDATED to charge high-profit low-cost customers (those in cities) more to subsidize the low-profit high-cost rural customers. I'm not sure if it applies to data services, but I believe (at least currently) that it does and I've seen it on my bill. The end effect is that costs are (at least somewhat) averaged across the country.

    That's for POTS only. That doesn't have any affect on DSL, other than at most an additional $5 to the base line. That means that this would be $85 in NY, compared to $80 in Paris. I think you won't find too many New Yorkers that would take 2.5 Gbps for $80 that would reject it for $85.

    I work for a company that is an ILEC in some places and a CLEC in others, so I see both sides of the regulations. They are annoying, but they don't really move money around that much, especially for a company with as many subscribers as Verizon. Sure, a line in the middle of nowhere up-state NY might cost $30 or $40 per person, but there are so few of them that they don't affect the cost of NYC lines much. But, "It's the evil government regulations" makes a great excuse. The real excuse is "I'm a monopoly, I don't have to improve service to maintain high profits."
  • by BenEnglishAtHome ( 449670 ) * on Wednesday July 26, 2006 @02:26PM (#15785891)
    I pay roughly the same for roughly the same performance. Where I am it's called "cable internet service." 10 years ago when cable internet service was made available in my isolated subdivision, I was among the first to sign up and I was happier than a pig in slop. A decade on, the size of the subdivision has tripled, every last person has signed on with the cable company, and they haven't upgraded a thing. My sustained d/l speeds for large amounts of data rarely break 100kbps.

    DSL? Too far from the CO.

    Dish? Gigantic pine trees everywhere that can't be cut down on pain of death from the homeowners association mean that satellite dishes are useless.

    Because of this one issue, I'm considering moving. And nobody hates moving more than me. Gawd, I wish I had an alternative.

"My sense of purpose is gone! I have no idea who I AM!" "Oh, my God... You've.. You've turned him into a DEMOCRAT!" -- Doonesbury