- ISP BT Prep UK Beta Trial of Broadband Based Digital Voice Service - ISPreview.co.uk
- As a Service? - CircleID
- Best distance wifi router to buy in 2019 – distance wifi router Reviews - NewsNifty
Posted: 11 Jun 2019 06:45 AM PDT
UK ISP BT appears to have begun a beta trial of their future Digital Voice service, which will eventually replace the PSTN analogue phone / voice services of today (expected to be completely retired by 2025) in favour of modern Voice-over-IP (VoIP) style alternatives that harness your broadband connection.
At present if you buy a copper (ADSL) or hybrid fibre (FTTC / G.fast) based broadband package from an ISP on Openreach's network, such as BT, then you either need to already be paying for the phone service as part of copper line rental (the copper line is essential for the broadband itself to work) or you'll most likely get it bundled alongside the overall package.
However copper phone lines are changing. In particular the forthcoming adoption of new services, such as Single Order Generic Ethernet Access (SOGEA and SOGfast), will make it possible for consumers to order a standalone FTTC (VDSL2) or G.fast broadband line without the analogue voice service (some ISPs like Freeola and AAISP have hacked together a similar fix but SOGEA goes a lot further).
All of this is necessary because the old analogue phone services are due to be withdrawn by 2025 (here) and, much further down the road, we'll even see the physical copper lines being completely switched-off as full fibre networks start to dominate (here). But in the meantime many consumers will still expect their ISP to offer a voice service and this inevitably means a move toward VoIP (See our VoIP Guide).
NOTE: The analogue voice component of a copper line only represents a tiny part of the line rental cost and its removal will not save you much money.
The above is one of the reasons why any ISP looking to launch a new broadband router today will generally offer a device that includes ATA / telephone ports (FXS) on the back, which are designed to work alongside an internet protocol based voice (VoIP) service (i.e. you plug your old analogue handsets into these and can still make calls, albeit digitally). Many "full fibre" (FTTP) providers already do this.
BT's Digital Voice Trial
The proposed BT Digital Voice beta trial is largely designed to help the provider prepare for the aforementioned changes and it will also complement their own move toward a single converged all-IP platform by 2022 (here). The trial aims to examine everything from placing an order, through to equipment delivery, set-up and fault reporting.
"Over the coming years BT will roll out a new phone service to all our UK customers. This is called Digital Voice. This may sound like a small change but it will be one of the biggest technology changes our customers have experienced to date, and we'd like your help to deliver this exciting new product to households across the U.K," said BT's private trial invitation.
The trial itself will supply customers with both a free Digital Voice Handset and one of BT's Smart Hub 2 broadband routers (these already come with a phone / FXS port on the back but until now it's remained dormant), unless the customer already has a SH2 in which case you'll be expected to use that (all usage and service charges will be free during the trial).
So far we've only heard of this trial being used on lines that have been converted to SOGEA. The handset also appears to pair with the SH2 over WiFi (or DECT) rather than a wired connection, although we assume it's possible via a wired link to the SH2 (can't be sure until we've got more feedback from our sources). The phone number then appears on the SH2's admin page and seems to allow for contact importing, as well as adding additional handsets etc.
Naturally we'd expect other ISPs to follow with their own VoIP style calling solutions over the next few months or years. On this front we'll be very interested to see how the costs compare with existing broadband and phone bundles, not only in terms of monthly rental but also the cost of calls and portability of the service (i.e. access via multiple devices).
Providers will also have to tread carefully here as there are a lot of dedicated VoIP providers around (i.e. competition on price) and many consumers will expect to have a choice (i.e. hopefully ISPs won't lock their routers to a specific VoIP platform as that may cause some anger).
Posted: 11 Jun 2019 09:04 AM PDT
The trend towards hosted services and the return of the intelligent network create risks of dependency even if well-intentioned.
It's all Cloudy
I'm happy to have the option of buying services. It's easier to eat at a restaurant than to do my own cooking, and I'm happy to pay for a ride rather than fighting traffic on my own. However, I'm not happy if I don't have the option of cooking for myself or of taking a stroll.
I used to be willing to pay for all of my phone calls but today I know that, thanks to VoIP, there is no need to. But the phone companies are attempting to wrest back control with their wider 5G agenda. 5G may have started as a project to save money on last mile cable but has morphed into a wider political agenda.
This effort to force me to buy services is why I was concerned when I got this response from a company making components which I could use to turn devices on and off:
"As our API is for non-end consumer and supposed to be used by commercial purposes, due to the burden added to the server, we had to charge an annual fee for API requests for our server maintenance and enhancement.
If you are not comfortable with such charge, you may just use the app as an end consumer which costs you nothing at all."
They followed up by explaining that they had to charge because of the cost of the cloud services. Cloud services? Just to turn on a light inside my house? It doesn't make sense to have a separate app for each device. Nor should I depend on a third party to integrate the various devices in the way they choose. I should have a say but, more to the point, I don't want a third party to have to capture the value they are adding — especially when that value is negative.
More to the point, such efforts inevitably fall short. IEEE-1394 (Firewire) is a strong example. I watched as it unfolded and collapsed as it became a victim of its own design limitations.
DLNA is another example. The site says "13 YEARS AND FOUR BILLION DEVICES LATER" but, in practice, few people actually use DLNA to view content. The copyright on the site is stuck in 2017. It's not that the people designing it weren't trying their best. It's that there was no process for people to contribute and share their innovations.
What struck me about the API response was the assumption that services had to be in "The Cloud." After all, doesn't it? Of course not. The cloud is the ability to provide resources on demand. The idea is not new — half a century ago it was called timesharing.
The cloud has another purpose. The limitations of IPv4 meant that all the devices in a home share a single IP address. One technique for making them accessible from outside the house is to have an outbound tunnel to a server which can then connect back to the device. This is a workaround in the absence of IPv6. It's an expedient engineering kludge that has turned into an opportunity for recurring revenue. It's similar to how the NAT (Network Address Translator) has become the firewall because it created addresses that weren't publicly visible.
I was thinking about this in reading the March 2019 issue of IEEE CE Magazine and coming across an article on 5G.
I've written about 5G in the past. 5G is what I refer to as marketecture — it's like systems architecture in engineering but is more about marketing than engineering. We see this when the cloud is treated as a given that one possible engineering solution or service platform.
The article itself is a perfectly valid technical article about a particular radio technology, but that technology is presented in the context of a broader agenda of clawing value back from our devices into the network. As I wrote in "From Broadband to Infrastructure", we actually create these services in our own devices.
The article comments that "MBOFDM efficiently manages limited bandwidth and has become the most useful signaling technique for this purpose." That's like saying there are a limited number of inches.
The article then goes on to present a rationale for this approach by presenting applications such as vehicle to vehicle communications. This is part of the larger 5G marketecture justified by the supposed need for very low latency connections for remote virtual reality as one example.
There is an interplay between real engineering and marketecture. The engineering is typically done in the context of a product requirement. Broadband connections to the home were seen as a way to enable cable and phone companies to offer a bevy of valuable services such as e-commerce, interactive TV and even access to the new World Wide Web.
It's all about Context
Engineering is about context. We need to be careful to avoid confusing our abstract models with context. Claude Shannon's theoretic models are a very good example of what can go wrong when we ignore context.
Shannon used the term "information" in describing the carrying capacity of channels measured in bits per second. He did the research in the context of a phone company that was transitioning from analog signaling over a wire to digital encoding. This made it seem as if he was describing a limit to how much information you can communicate over a given band of spectrum (a virtual channel). However, his use of "information" has nothing to do with the day-to-day sense of information as "meaning." This becomes obvious when we try to measure the amount of information in a pause or, more to the point a pregnant pause. No bits are being transmitted yet there is a world of meaning, and they are two different kinds of pauses.
It is in effect a mistranslation that underlies today's public policy. It puts a third party in the middle of every conversation. At the time of the Communications Act of 1934, it seemed necessary to allocate an analog channel, AKA, a wire, to each conversation. Later this was emulated in the intelligent network (SS7) that pre-allocated a path to assure that each conversation had a clear channel.
Voice over IP is a counterexample. It works very well without pre-allocating a channel but instead takes advantage of any available opportunity. The meaning, and thus, the value of the conversation, is entirely outside the network. It also means there is no inherent scarcity because we're not pre-allocating resources but instead adapting dynamically to what resources are available.
Communications engineers need to be aware of the context. Improving the capabilities of radios is very useful, but the term "5G" has a lot of baggage beyond radio technology. In order to fulfill the promises of guaranteed capacity over any distance, we need a provider who can pre-allocate channels. This means that a provider can charge for reserving network capacity. The full 5G vision includes concepts like sharding (selling off capacity to the highest bidder).
Amazon's AWS, Microsoft Azure and many other services share the common Internet. But 5G embraces concepts like Network Virtual Functions. NVF which is based on the idea that services should be hosted inside the network. Such hosting comes at a price and limits innovation.
Network engineers need to be aware of this broader context and be careful about confusing the marketing and business agenda of their radio technology with the effort to capture value in the network.
In the same way, those doing IoT or "Internet of Things" devices need to recognize that the traditional embedded system designs that depend on their own network are missing the "I" in IoT. The power of the Internet comes from the ability to use any available path between two endpoints and the ability to adapt to capacity available including, at times, no connection between the endpoints. Any capacity added, benefits all applications.
Which brings us back to the cloud. Having abundant server capacity available is wonderful, but it makes no sense to have simple local functions fail. For example, when turning on a porch light, it makes no sense to have the light switch fail if someone doesn't renew a subscription or if a distant server fails.
This is not a theoretical concern. Circuit City DivX DVDs required a license to play. Your player would connect to their services to authorize each play. When the company went out of business, the discs stopped playing.
I was about to type "edge" but the edge of what? There is no well-defined "network" but rather the facilities we use to interconnect.
Sound engineering starts with assuring that local devices can continue to operate even if other services aren't available. We can enhance capabilities using services such as those cloud servers, but your doorbell and HVAC need to work even if you're disconnected.
Local can still be powerful. For example, I've been using light bulbs and switches from a Bulgarian company. Their switches and even light bulbs have built-in web servers. Using their cloud is an option but not required. It is local-first and easy to connect.
Yes, I know the company is not local. What is important is that the devices don't depend on connecting to their services.
When I was doing home networking, I had an idea for how to use the phone wires to do networking. When I asked an engineering company to implement it, they listened to what I was asking for and gave me a different approach that did a better job in achieving my goal.
5G's mmWave radios are a case in point. In themselves, they are a fine technology. But in the context of 5G, they are problematic when used as part of a broader agenda to push back on the Internet's threat to the revenue streams of today's phone companies, AKA telecommunications providers.
Scientists and engineers need to present applications scenarios in order to get funding. They need to be aware of how these stories are used in the context of justifying business practices and public policies.
Consumer Electronics and IoT
Today interconnecting things with computing capabilities, AKA, the Internet of Things, is very exciting and powerful going far beyond the old days of component Hi-Fi. But we won't be able to get the full benefit if we accept the idea that they will only work if we have remote services and communications providers.
Today's regulatory system has given telecommunications companies control of the paths between distant endpoints. While they once prided themselves on being stewards of our vital ability to communicate, today they are businesses who see the open connectivity as a threat. We must be wary of any efforts to disadvantage WiFi as a way to encourage, and sometimes require, the use of their billable services.
It's not enough to understand the engineering. Context matters especially when used to justify public policies that limit our ability to innovate.
A version of this post was originally published in the IEEE journal.
Posted: 10 Jun 2019 11:43 PM PDT
If you are looking to pick a decent distance wifi router then there are three things that you need to look out for. We will cover them in this post and also give you an overview on where to find the best deals.
That being said, if you choose any random distance wifi router, there are possibilities of facing some of the serious issues which can come from choosing the wrong product.
You don't always have to spend a lot of money to find the best distance wifi router for your purposes. There is a whole range of distance wifi router and prices that can deliver the features you need. If you are looking for the top distance wifi router, a lot of factors are going to be important considerations.
The first thing that you need to consider when you are shopping for a distance wifi router is the quality of the distance wifi router that you need it for.
Whether you want to just get started with adistance wifi router, we have The third tip that we have for you is to read up some reviews of distance wifi router so you can see exactly what you get with each one and make a more informed buying decision! Check out the complete reviews of distance wifi router on this website and you will see and be able to pick the right one for you!
Due to the vast abundance of distance wifi router out there in the world today, making the right choice can often seem to be a stressful task. To make that task simpler for you.
We have put together a handy checklist of features and specifications you may use to select the best distance wifi router.
Netgear (R7000P-100NAS) Nighthawk AC2300 Dual Band Smart WiFi Router, Gigabit Ethernet, MU-MIMO, Compatible with Amazon Echo/Alexa and Circle Smart Parental Controls *
NETGEAR AC1000 Dual Band Smart WiFi Router, Fast Ethernet (R6080) *
MOTOROLA AC1700 Dual-Band WiFi Gigabit Router with Extended Range, Model MR1700 *
MOTOROLA AC2600 4×4 WiFi Smart Gigabit Router with Extended Range, Model MR2600 *
TP-Link N450 Wi-Fi Router – Wireless Internet Router for Home, Wireless Access Point Mode (TL-WR940N) *
WAVLINK ARIEAL HD2 – AC600 Outdoor WiFi Access Point High Power Dual Band 2.4+5G 600Mbps Wireless Router/AP/Wi-Fi Range Extender 3 in 1 Weatherproof with PoE, Upgrade Version *
The above discussion should give you some ideas about distance wifi router. Compare not only their prices but also their performance.
List of Top best distance wifi router in 2019
Here is a short list of the top distance wifi routerproducts from each of the price ranges. Don't think that cheap means poorly made, often the difference in the products by price are in what features they include not the quality of their manufacture.
That's why we've decided to do an in-depth research around these distance wifi router. Now, at the end of those hours-long using sessions and analysis, we are all set to recommend the best choices you'll have in the distance wifi router category. Obviously, we have our picks from premium, semi-premium and budget-friendly sectors. Therefore, when it's time, you can have the best distance wifi router .
The premium segment includes products that are priced above a certain range. The quality of these and feature capabilities can make these distance wifi router deal for professional use.
The medium segment of the distance wifi router market has a mid price range which fits those looking for best bang of their buck.. This is a very wide price range to find products with such similar features but what differentiates them from each other is the approach they take to their features. These are higher end consumer products, but not the pro-summer quality of the premium segment.
When purchasing a Product you want to make sure that you purchase the best distance wifi router available for the man/woman who will be on the receiving end. One of the ways to accomplish this is by comparing the different brands that are available and getting the features that fit within your budget.
Why do you need a distance wifi router
A distance wifi router is one of the most popular item that is going to be viral in coming years, due to its wide range of applicability in the industry. People may or may not be aware of the reason why people should buy a distance wifi router or why they need to have one.
How to choose the best distance wifi router for you?
To choose and buy the right kind of distance wifi router , you will have to be very careful in doing so. Because the distance wifi router come in a wide range of types, having different characteristics and capabilities and if you don't concentrate on each and every aspect, then you surely would miss out the best one for you.
Here is a checklist you can use to double check your choice while selecting and purchasing it.
Determine the type and function you need
You should be very clear about the type of distance wifi router you need. Keep in mind the various types and determine the best on the basis of the feature you need and the purpose you need to accomplish. Like for a medium range product with a medium quality or a high end stuff.
Brand and price
If you have a particular budget or a specific brand in mind then do sort out the brand first and then look for further features.
Quality of the material
The first thing you should look at, is the quality of material and the sturdiness of the structure. It is important because the distance wifi router should be made of high quality and durable material to help it withstand normal day to day wear and tear.
Warranty and complimentary tools
If you can get a warranty from the manufacturer then it would be a plus, so look at this feature also. In addition to it you may also find some tool that some of the manufacturers offer, along your product.
Where to buy the best distance wifi router
Buying a distance wifi router could be hectic, if you don't know where you can find the best brands and a wide range distance wifi router types to let you select the one you need. For this, you'll have to search for the most trustworthy and reliable seller that will offer you all the best rated brands along with the best price available on the market. You can either look to buy it from a local market or through online retailer and stores like Amazon.
Most of the people have a tendency to prefer online stores like The amazon. The reason behind it is the availability of the wide range of quality products, trustworthy sellers and an opportunity to compare the products and pick the best one for you.
So, You can easily buy your distance wifi router on amazon at affordable rates and an assurance of a quality product.
The final word
This is just an overview of some of the best distance wifi router in each of the price ranges. The point is that no matter what your budget, there is a functional distance wifi router for you. Make sure you filter them for the ones that interest you so you know all the features and considerations of each. That can be the best way to identify what features you really need in a more expensive version.
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