Broadband Solutions for Residential Customers

Broadband Solutions for Residential Customers

Mariana Hentea (Excelsior College, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-014-1.ch022
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Abstract

In recent years, home networking has undergone significant changes due to the proliferation of technologies that support converging consumer electronics, mobile, and computer networks. An increased number of networked appliances may assume a networked home with an always-on Internet connection. Home networks host a proliferation of linked devices and sensors including enhanced or new applications which can be categorized as follows: • Home automation and controls • Networked appliances • Mobile • Home/SOHO Office • Entertainment (audio, video, gaming, IPTV, etc.) • Personal services (banking, shopping, healthcare, learning, etc.) • Storage devices • Social networking • Local and remote management Broadband adoption has marked an increasing number of subscribers worldwide due to several factors such as increasing number of PCs in households, broadband access services, standardization, emerging technologies and applications, government policy, and market players. Japanese manufacturers are attempting to seamlessly interconnect wireless personal area network with mobile phones, whereby home network service could be controlled by remote users. Starting in 2007, ABI Research forecasts that converged intelligent home network services (home automation and networked digital appliances) will take off in the South Korean market (ABI, 2007). Home networking is evolving rapidly to digital home and smart home environments (MIT Project, 2007). Digital Living Network Alliance defines a digital home consisting of “a network of consumer electronics, PCs and mobile devices that co-operate transparently, delivering simple, seamless interoperability” (DLNA, 2007). The rapid developments are in all areas: devices, services, and access. Consumers have gone from using their home network primarily to share broadband connections delivering video and audio over IP around the home. Content management and service provisioning is key to offering entertainment services including personalization, context awareness, and positioning (Kozbe, Roccetti, & Ulema, 2005). Networked consumer systems and devices, including network-centric entertainment systems, have become one of the major focus areas of the communication and entertainment industries (Rocetti, Kozbe, & Ulema, 2005). The introduction of iPod device and of iTunes Music Store service brought digital entertainment into home. Other factors that contributed to this success include: • Advances of multimedia technology such as high-quality video and sound. • Advances in wireless communications and interactive applications taking nomadic entertainment experiences to new dimensions. • Compatibility among devices. • Increased revenue on game software and devices, surpassing the revenues achieved by the movie industry. In this chapter, an update of the chapter of the first edition (Hentea, 2005), we focus on recent advances and trends for broadband access and services. The rest of the chapter is organized in sections as follows: the next section contains recent enhancements of broadband access; then, we provide an overview of emerging services and technologies in one section, followed by a brief review of the standards in the next section. We conclude with a perspective on the future developments.
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Home Networkng Overview

In recent years, home networking has undergone significant changes due to the proliferation of technologies that support converging consumer electronics, mobile, and computer networks. An increased number of networked appliances may assume a networked home with an always-on Internet connection. Home networks host a proliferation of linked devices and sensors including enhanced or new applications which can be categorized as follows:

  • Home automation and controls

  • Networked appliances

  • Mobile

  • Home/SOHO Office

  • Entertainment (audio, video, gaming, IPTV, etc.)

  • Personal services (banking, shopping, healthcare, learning, etc.)

  • Storage devices

  • Social networking

  • Local and remote management

Broadband adoption has marked an increasing number of subscribers worldwide due to several factors such as increasing number of PCs in households, broadband access services, standardization, emerging technologies and applications, government policy, and market players. Japanese manufacturers are attempting to seamlessly interconnect wireless personal area network with mobile phones, whereby home network service could be controlled by remote users. Starting in 2007, ABI Research forecasts that converged intelligent home network services (home automation and networked digital appliances) will take off in the South Korean market (ABI, 2007). Home networking is evolving rapidly to digital home and smart home environments (MIT Project, 2007). Digital Living Network Alliance defines a digital home consisting of “a network of consumer electronics, PCs and mobile devices that co-operate transparently, delivering simple, seamless interoperability” (DLNA, 2007).

The rapid developments are in all areas: devices, services, and access. Consumers have gone from using their home network primarily to share broadband connections delivering video and audio over IP around the home. Content management and service provisioning is key to offering entertainment services including personalization, context awareness, and positioning (Kozbe, Roccetti, & Ulema, 2005). Networked consumer systems and devices, including network-centric entertainment systems, have become one of the major focus areas of the communication and entertainment industries (Rocetti, Kozbe, & Ulema, 2005). The introduction of iPod device and of iTunes Music Store service brought digital entertainment into home. Other factors that contributed to this success include:

  • Advances of multimedia technology such as high-quality video and sound.

  • Advances in wireless communications and interactive applications taking nomadic entertainment experiences to new dimensions.

  • Compatibility among devices.

  • Increased revenue on game software and devices, surpassing the revenues achieved by the movie industry.

In this chapter, an update of the chapter of the first edition (Hentea, 2005), we focus on recent advances and trends for broadband access and services. The rest of the chapter is organized in sections as follows: the next section contains recent enhancements of broadband access; then, we provide an overview of emerging services and technologies in one section, followed by a brief review of the standards in the next section. We conclude with a perspective on the future developments.

Key Terms in this Chapter

OSGi: Open Services Gateway initiative is a service container built on top of a Java virtual machine. It hosts deployment units called bundles, which contain code, other resources (picture, files), and a specific start method.

Triple-Play: Service package including voice, video, and data.

Portability: Ability of a program or application to be ported from one system to another.

Nomadicity: Ability to connect to the network from different locations via different base stations

Mobility: Ability to keep ongoing connections active while moving at vehicular speeds.

WiMAX: Worldwide interoperability for Microwave Access technology designed to support both fixed and mobile broadband applications.

HAVi: Home Audio Video interoperability is a video and audio standard aimed specifically at the home entertainment environment. HAVi allows different home entertainment and communication devices (such as VCRs, televisions, stereos, security systems, video monitors) to be linked and controlled from one device.

Wi-Fi: Wireless Fidelity is technology based on IEEE 802.11a/b/ standards for wireless network.

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