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Old 03-28-2014, 06:43 AM   #16
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Wiki is a pretty useless reference for anything controversial. Lot's of people claim that Comcast throttles, but then again lots of people claim to have seen UFO's and Bigfoot, so lot's of people isn't really much of a proof either. Comcast and many other internet providers throttle high bandwidth users. I have yet to see any what I consider believable proof that Comcast actually throttles down incoming data streams. Here is a good story that explains what is actually happening.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/...m_business_pop

I've been following the Netflix issue for a couple of years now. The initial issue was that Netflix was sole sourcing their internet connections, i.e. the connection from Netflix to the rest of the internet, and their provider couldn't handle the load at peak times. More recently, they have switched to the google model of spreading out their nodes geographically, to minimize bottle necks. What netflix and comcast agreed to is a direct high speed connection between the netflix network and the comcast backbone, bypassing the various parties that use to be in between.

There are a lot of tools out there to show what's going on with a connection. I use visualroute myself. While it only gives an idea of what's going on, it does show all the nodes that you have to go through to get to a site.

I rarely have trouble with quality of service for netflix and I have used both Comcast and AT&T u-verse. Of course, I generally don't use netflix during peak hours. As Napoleon once famously said (to translate to English) "Never ascribe to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence." People want to claim conspiracy all the time, but frankly, large corporations just aren't competent enough to hide a conspiracy like that. If you know anything about networks, you know that a huge number of people would have to be involved to throttle down a specific service. It's a very non trivial task. If you think that AT&T and Comcast could pull it off without a bunch of incriminating emails or memos surfacing, then you have a much higher opinion of their competence than I do.

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Old 03-28-2014, 10:35 AM   #17
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Throttling is a negative term. QoS is the positive term. All ISPs who use the same fiber for voice, data, and video apply QoS. Using separate fibers for each is de facto throttling. Some non-wiki here as it pertains to the NBC-Universal acquisition...

http://blog.streamingmedia.com/2012/...t-traffic.html

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Based on details I have gotten from those who have looked at how packets are marked on their home broadband connections provided by Comcast, packets are in fact being marked with Quality of Service tags. Services from MLB, Hulu and Netflix are marked with CS1 tags and Xfinity is marked as CS5. In tests, the Xfinity traffic originates from servers inside Comcast's network and the other traffic originates on Level 3 and Akamai servers outside Comcast's network. All of these QoS tags are put on by Comcast.
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Old 03-28-2014, 12:10 PM   #18
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No they are very different concepts. QoS simply means that you are guaranteed a certain level of service, i.e. that you go no lower than a certain service speed. Throttling means that you limit the service speed at a certain maximum value.

Prioritization has has been in the internet for some time. It became a big deal when you had slow connection speeds and VOIP. Since you don't want to interrupt Mom's conversion with Grandma, just because junior is downloading porn, VOIP was given priority. That doesn't imply that the porn is being throttled though.

You get throttling even if you have a clear pipeline. If you have a clogged pipeline, then packets with lower priorities are handled after packets with higher priorities. I would also point out that the unnamed "those who know how to look at how packets are marked"[just as a side note, I and just about anyone who knows what I mean when I refer to Stevens knows how to look at how packets are marked] might know how the packet is marked when it arrives at their home PC, but that doesn't mean they know how the networks in between is actually handling the packet. It really doesn't mean anything other than a little bit of knowledge can lead one to conclusions which may or may not be correct.
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Old 03-28-2014, 12:39 PM   #19
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Different concepts, same reality. No one has a clear pipe these days.
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Old 03-28-2014, 02:36 PM   #20
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Different concepts, same reality. No one has a clear pipe these days.
It is always "First things first."
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Old 03-28-2014, 03:37 PM   #21
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Different concepts, same reality. No one has a clear pipe these days.
Actually not even close to true. Amazon, Google and Apple invested a lot of money into making sure the consumer can get to them with a minimum amount of delay. They have regional nodes all over the country so people have a minimal number of hops to go through. Netflix didn't and is now trying to catch up.

I've got a 100 mbps internet connection via x-finity and rarely have any delays with streaming content from Netflix, Apple or Amazon. I use to have some issue with Netflix, but not recently. I've never had an issue with Apple or Amazon. I've found that I see a lot more variability streaming depending on the device (Tivo, AppleTV, playstation 2) that I'm streaming to rather than the vendor (Netflix, Apple, Amazon) that I'm streaming from.
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Old 03-28-2014, 03:47 PM   #22
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No they are very different concepts. QoS simply means that you are guaranteed a certain level of service, i.e. that you go no lower than a certain service speed. Throttling means that you limit the service speed at a certain maximum value.
Just to clarify, QoS does not mean you are gauranteed a certain level of service. It merely gaurantees a higher level of service for prioritized packets than for non-prioritized packets.

You are correct that QoS and throttling are not the same. But the net effect to the consumer can be.

The article you posted was interesting, showing that up to 1/3 of traffic comes from Netflix. It would appear that congestion is going to be an even bigger issue as online streaming continues to increase in popularity.
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Old 03-29-2014, 05:59 AM   #23
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Obama has weighed in against Aereo in advance of Supreme Court hearings. A number of state courts and politicians have done the same. Comcast and the cable consortium spend a lot greasing palms.
And yet you fail to see the irony: you want government law (antitrust) to fix the ills created by government-instituted monopolies.
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Old 03-29-2014, 02:18 PM   #24
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Just to clarify, QoS does not mean you are gauranteed a certain level of service. It merely gaurantees a higher level of service for prioritized packets than for non-prioritized packets.

You are correct that QoS and throttling are not the same. But the net effect to the consumer can be.

The article you posted was interesting, showing that up to 1/3 of traffic comes from Netflix. It would appear that congestion is going to be an even bigger issue as online streaming continues to increase in popularity.
Usage expands to fill capacity, that seems to be a basic law. I would expect that capacity will expand even more to meet increasing usage. As long as companies can make money in the game, they will continue to play. It really wasn't all that long ago that we didn't have broadband and people used 1200 baud modems to access the internet, and 10 mbps ethernet at the office was hot stuff. That's how cyber Monday came about. I'm sure that other backbone companies will step in to expand the over all backbone capacity. The various end user companies (Comcast, Verizon, AT&T, etc...) will need to continue to beef up their capacity as well.

The big issue for streamers is content. People love Netflix because what's not to love about all you can eat streaming for $10 a month. Netflix is now between a rock and a hard place because they have established $10 a month all you can eat, yet they have a lot of expenses. They need to get content, and they need to expand their capacity. At some point, I expect it to settle in, somewhat like music has, between people who want to buy/rent and people who just want a subscription service.

To tie things back to Apple, Apple's big problem is content. If Apple every really comes out with a iTV product (ignoring the current AppleTV, which is really a different product), I expect them to compete more with TiVo than with Netflix, i.e. a place where the end user can say "I want to watch Black Sails" and not worry about where it comes from.
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Old 04-04-2014, 01:40 PM   #25
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The TV set is the target for everyone. Here Amazon ups its ante.

Amazon Fire TV Hands-on
Amazon's $99 streaming box impresses.
by Scott Lowe, IGN
April 2, 2014

Amazon's long-rumored set-top box, the Fire TV, has arrived, bringing it with a vast plethora of streaming entertainment, and most notably, gaming support with an optional full-sized gamepad. Priced at $99 ($140 if you buy the add-on controller), the Amazon Fire TV is aimed squarely at rivals Apple TV and Roku, and after spending a few hours with the system, I'm convinced it's more than capable of earning a spot at the table...

Read more here.
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Old 04-04-2014, 03:33 PM   #26
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The TV set is the target for everyone. Here Amazon ups its ante.

Amazon Fire TV Hands-on
Amazon's $99 streaming box impresses.
by Scott Lowe, IGN
April 2, 2014

Amazon's long-rumored set-top box, the Fire TV, has arrived, bringing it with a vast plethora of streaming entertainment, and most notably, gaming support with an optional full-sized gamepad. Priced at $99 ($140 if you buy the add-on controller), the Amazon Fire TV is aimed squarely at rivals Apple TV and Roku, and after spending a few hours with the system, I'm convinced it's more than capable of earning a spot at the table...

Read more here.
I just don't see where this is going to be a big hit. It doesn't do anything that a half a dozen video streaming devices don't already do. Amazon just seems to be a day late and a dollar short on this one.
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Old 04-06-2014, 08:09 PM   #27
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I just don't see where this is going to be a big hit. It doesn't do anything that a half a dozen video streaming devices don't already do. Amazon just seems to be a day late and a dollar short on this one.
I am waiting to see what happens.

I do know that Jeff Bezos and Amazon are the closest thing we have to Steve Jobs and Apple these days. Those 2 guys have been "right" most of the time.
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Old 04-07-2014, 07:02 AM   #28
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I just don't see where this is going to be a big hit. It doesn't do anything that a half a dozen video streaming devices don't already do. Amazon just seems to be a day late and a dollar short on this one.
I've said as much in the appropriate thread but...
...Amazon brand loyalty these days is approaching Apple's. If Apple can sell a billion bucks of AppleTVs, Amazon can do okay for themselves.

After all, few mainstream buyers research a hundred-dollar buy to death.
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Old 04-07-2014, 07:21 AM   #29
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Well, that's the point. Apple isn't making a billion bucks off of AppleTV. They still call it a hobby and I don't believe they are making all that much off them. Roku has a better price point and supplies most of the same services. Amazon's service model for the kindle has been that they sale kindles in order to sale content. Unless this is a bridge product for some new service, it just seems like a me too product.
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Old 04-07-2014, 09:13 AM   #30
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Well, that's the point. Apple isn't making a billion bucks off of AppleTV. They still call it a hobby and I don't believe they are making all that much off them. Roku has a better price point and supplies most of the same services. Amazon's service model for the kindle has been that they sale kindles in order to sale content. Unless this is a bridge product for some new service, it just seems like a me too product.
It may be a "me too" product, but it is a good one that leverages Amazon's brand identity and unmatched online sales channel.
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