New minimum speed for US broadband connections

Mike Hammett nanog at
Sun May 30 12:00:43 UTC 2021

Well right, but what many seem to be disconnected with is where is the line between spending a few billion dollars per year and spending tens or hundreds of billions of dollars per year. We're conflating "minimum acceptable service" with "what I feel I need to be comfortable." 

If we decide to raise it to 100/100, what do we get out of it? 

Is it worth the cost? 

Why 100/100? Wouldn't 10 megs of upload fulfill most of the new-found need? If not 10, wouldn't 15 or 20? 

Historically, the bulk of the need for big residential upload was backing up to the cloud of various local archives. That's a one-time transaction. After that, the backups are incremental and insignificant for most uses. 

A lot of people have a hard time not equating edge cases with normal. We then take that "normal" and then assume that happens everywhere and that if not, it's because of some devious scheme put in place. We'll have to realize that not everyone has 6 kids e-learning from home and has 14 Ring\Nest cameras streaming to the cloud while 10 people watch Amazon 4k video. 

How many anecdotes are because of: 
Poor in-home WiFi? 
Inconsistent minimum bps? 
Low peak bps? 
High ms? 
Inconsistent ms? 
Packet loss? 
Something else in the middle-mile? 
Bad peering? 
Trying to do something that probably shouldn't be done anyway? 

Admittedly, many of the largest ISPs have done the bare minimum (or less) over the past 20 years. That does need to be fixed. 

Mike Hammett 
Intelligent Computing Solutions 


----- Original Message -----

From: "Andy Ringsmuth" <andy at> 
To: "NANOG" <nanog at> 
Sent: Saturday, May 29, 2021 4:19:37 PM 
Subject: Re: New minimum speed for US broadband connections 

Well, honestly, if you really want to go down the “need vs. want” road, 100 percent of the folks on this list would be out of a job. 

What are genuine needs? Food/water, clothing and shelter. That’s it. Even the last two are somewhat negotiable if you get right down to it. 

Andy Ringsmuth 
5609 Harding Drive 
Lincoln, NE 68521-5831 
(402) 304-0083 
andy at 

“Better even die free, than to live slaves.” - Frederick Douglas, 1863 

> On May 29, 2021, at 7:48 AM, Mike Hammett <nanog at> wrote: 
> Need vs. want. 
> ----- 
> Mike Hammett 
> Intelligent Computing Solutions 
> Midwest-IX 
> From: "Baldur Norddahl" <baldur.norddahl at> 
> To: "NANOG" <nanog at> 
> Sent: Saturday, May 29, 2021 3:49:01 AM 
> Subject: Re: New minimum speed for US broadband connections 
> I am in Europe / Denmark. The EU has defined broadband to be 100 Mbps download with nothing specified for upload. The goal is for everyone to have access to broadband by 2025. 
> Such definitions do help those in rural areas. In fact this is precisely useful for those that do not currently have access. It helps to make goals and to measure how we are progressing. 
> All current technologies can deliver broadband, including DSL, coax, 5G and fixed wireless. But maybe not without investment. That DSL plant might need upgrading to the latest VDSL and cabinets closer to the customer. The coax might need upgrades etc. But that is the point. Providers will need to invest to be able to claim broadband. 
> On the other hand a soft easy broadband definition is useless in my opinion. Then everyone has broadband, hurray, but many have slow internet and nothing is going to be done because it is broadband! 
> Regards 
> Baldur 

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