Faster Upstream Speeds for Cable Broadband

By now we are quite aware of cable companies’ plans to offer 100 Mbps connections to their customers, thanks to DOCSIS 3.0 technologies. Our friend Dave Burstein of DSL Prime reports that cable companies are considering drastically boosting upstream speeds in coming years. Comcast (s cmcsa), Cox and Liberty Global (s lbtya) have all done trials that have produced shared upstream speeds of about 75 Mbps.

U.S. cable companies expect that by 2015, nearly 100 million of the nation’s homes will be able to send data upstream at speeds of around 20 Mbps. This will eventually be followed by further upgrades to 50 Mbps, by way of enhancements to DOCSIS 3.0 tech. That compares to current upstream speeds of 6-28 Mbps (shared).

While we all tend to focus on the downstream speeds, which have hit 100 Mbps in some regions, we need upstream speed in order for a new generation of Internet services to thrive. From online back-ups to video uploads to television sharing (via Slingbox) to sharing photos and files via devices like Pogoplug — many of these services are dependent on upstream bandwidth. Same goes for video conferencing and other two-way applications.

Related content from GigaOM Pro (sub req’d): When It Comes to Pain at the Pipe, Upstream Is the New Downstream.