Monday, 24 June 2013

NBN: Another 100 years in Copper. Yes, but only for phones.

Mark Gregory made an excellent reply to David Thodey, Telstra CEO, statement last week:

“copper has been going for 100 years. I think it will be going for another 100.”
In what world will that happen?

Is Thodey just playing semantics?
Does he mean "copper will be used somewhere in consumer devices and LAN's", or did he really mean what it seems "Telstra services will still be delivered over existing copper in 100 years".

It seems he's repealed the Law of Physics and Chemistry within his network:
Thodey's special copper doesn't corrode, joints degrade or the insulation ever break-down, under any and all circumstances.
I'd like that sort of power and confidence. Or he really was just having fun and spinning a line to get news coverage.

I can conceive of one, and only one, scenario where Telstra will be running copper elements within its Customer Access Network 100 years from now:
Some telephony, control, alarm or traffic light/SCADA circuits are deemed "essential" and must be kept working at any cost.
And it will be at any cost. A few thousand services running copper - that will be really high cost.

The thing I found most interesting with the article was the comments.
The blow-you-I'm-OK self-centered attitude, ignorance, bias and prejudice shown by many of the commenters on technical, economic and financial is still quite amazing.

Abel Adamski makes his usual good contributions, with many links/sources. He really is a source of hope and rational discussion in a argument full of sound-bits and dogma - look for his comments (and Mark Gregory's). Worth the effort and my thanks to him for doing this work.

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