New Broadband Connection Can Handle HD VOD

KARLSTAD, Sweden — Sigbritt Lothberg, a 75-year-old woman living in this central Sweden town, now has the fastest residential Internet connection in the world: 40 gigabits per second, thousands of times faster than the average residential link. This is the first time that a connection this fast has been available in a residence.

"Europe got into the broadband game a bit later than the U.S. did so their connections are a lot higher than the standard connection here," Digital Playground co-founder Joone told XBIZ. "High-quality VOD is now available with that kind of connection. You can stream an HD movie."

The connection could also let Lothberg watch 1,500 high-definition TV channels, simultaneously. If nothing on those 1,500 TV channels interests her, she can download a complete high-def DVD in just two seconds.

Sigbritt Lothberg is the mother of Swedish optical Internet pioneer Peter Lothberg, who has consulted with Internet networking equipment company Cisco on its GSR12000 backbone router and Sprint on its Internet infrastructure strategy. Lothberg arranged the high-speed connection for his mother with local Internet service provider Karlstad Stadsnat.

"This is more than just a demonstration," network operator Hafsteinn Jonsson said. "As a network owner we're trying to persuade Internet operators to invest in faster connections. And Peter Lothberg wanted to show how you can build a low-price, high-capacity line over long distances," he said.

The ultra-fast connection is based on a new modulation technique that lets data be transferred directly between two routers located up to 1,200 miles apart, with no intermediary transponders. According to Karlstad Stadsnat, the distance is theoretically unlimited, with no data loss as long as the fiber technology is in place.

"I want to show that there are other methods than the old fashioned ways — such as copper wires and radio — which lack the possibilities that fiber has," Peter Lothberg said.

Jonsson agreed, saying that fiber technology makes high-speed connections like this technically and commercially viable.

"The most difficult part of the whole project was installing Windows on Sigbritt's PC," Jonsson said.

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