In Business Model, Internet Access, Mobile, Spectrum

Right now I am on a trans-Pacific flight, using the onboard Wi-Fi, which I am very happy to have, even if the satellite-delivered service is slow and prone to outages. But the very experience points out the value–to end users–of the effort by to encourage bandwidth-efficient apps.

Right now, with the connection unstable and very slow, i would happily dispense with images, graphics and full-motion video just to be able to use a text-rich experience and get my work done.

But that is precisely what is trying to do: encourage bandwidth efficient apps for areas where raw bandwidth will be slow and expensive and possibly flaky. It’s a good thing, in many instances.

We can lament gatekeeping in principle, or outright blocking, at times. The connection i am on blocks all streaming video and VoIP, for example, because there is not enough bandwidth. But that illustrates the point. There will be instances where bandwidth-intensive apps are counter-productive.

In some instances, you need skinny apps, to be able to use apps at all. That isn’t the case everywhere. But right now, I am seeing the obvious advantage.

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