Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Research Questions About Terminating the PSTN

      Incumbent carrier initiatives to eliminate the PSTN and their carrier of last resort responsibilities may constitute on of the key evolving policy initiatives going forward. Here are some research questions worthy of investigation:

If consumers must migrate from POTS to a NGN (IP-centric) replacement, what are the net consequences in terms of consumers’ out of pocket costs, as well as network QOS, availability, reliability and  scalability? 

Can wireless networks accommodate the complete off loading of wireline traffic?  Would this offloading exacerbate spectrum  scarcity?

If incumbents continue to rely on wireline plant, e.g., U-verse, do they gain deregulation without conferring much upside consumer benefits?   For example most carriers offer unmetered (All You Can Eat") wireline service  at about $20 a month, but metered wireless service costs 2 or 3 times as much.
How would deregulation create incentives for carriers to migrate from copper to fiber media?
As many incumbents have eschewed POTS universal service funding, will they similarly avoid broadband subsidies tied to open network access requirements?
Will the migration remedy the digital divide, including areas with limited or no wireless service?

Monday, December 3, 2012

Adventures in Cloud Computing (Part One)

What are the odds that the following 3 travel misadventures would occur on the same day?

1)     The National Car rental web site again tell me that my credit cards on account have expired.  Of course they haven't and a phone agent confirms this, but that doesn't help me modify an existing rez.

2)     A special reservaiton web site for a Hilton conference hotel generates a confirmation code that Hilton can't read and process.  I never receive confirmation and end up booking two reservations I can't see.  But of course Hilton debits my credit card twice.  Calls to India prove fruitless.

3)      My last four United code share flights with Lufthansa and Swiss never generate miles with United Mileage Plus.  I risk getting drummed out of the Economy Plus seating area.

         Are the travel gods telling me something?