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Re: Microsoft offering xDSL access
From: Jeremy Porter <jerry () fc net>
Date: Fri, 23 Jan 1998 14:03:11 -0600

My guess is that they're using an ATM based network to bring the subscriber
line into a packet switched medium, pointing the traffic through the network
by way of a PVC, and into the MegaCentral device which has the opposite 
asymetrical characteristics of a subscriber line.  In this fashion, any ISP
can buy a port, plug it into an ethernet, and provide service.  And the
pricing isn't bad, either.  $400/month for a 1.5Mbps outbound connection.
Subscriber side is great, too.  $40/month for the 192Kbps...  Do the math,
you dialup providers, and see how much money it saves you over dialup modem
banks.  The cost savings are enough to put in more bandwidth, and still have
a higher profit margin than before.

Southwestern Bell wants $900+ for a T-1 ATM interconnect for the
ADSL.  This is technologyically a fairly good idea as it has
good scaling properties, but it puts ISPs into the same position as
it does long distance carriers when they have to compete for
intrastate long distance.  If the RBOCs didn't have pocket ISPs
I wouldn't be bothered by this, but since we have already seen anti-competive
actions from SBC/SWBISP, there are lots og regulator problems with this.

Luckily our PUC actually listens to the consumers and has
forced the LECs to provide "advanced" services like ISDN at reasonable
rates.  (The forced tarrif changes.)  I suspect we will see this
issue pop up at the regulatory level in Texas.

Jeremy Porter, Freeside Communications, Inc.      jerry () fc net
PO BOX 80315 Austin, Tx 78708  |  1-800-968-8750  |  512-458-9810

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