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Look Out Cable: G.Lite's A Force to Contend With

A new consumer friendly version of ADSL called "G.Lite" is ready for the market and will compete with cable accessing some markets, according to experts speaking on the emerging technology Thursday at Fall Internet World 99.

"G.Lite is an acceptable alternative to cable modems," said Peter LeBlanc, director of business development for Aware Inc. (AWRE)

"And the two markets will co-exist."

LeBlanc predicted that residential ADSL would rise from about 1 million to 3 million users over the next two years, less than half than the cable user total...

Since speeds are comparable, the technology that is first available to customers in a particular area will gain prominence. In order to accommodate ADSL, phone companies must install components called DSLAMs in their local offices. If they do so in areas where cable is not available their market domination is assured.

LeBlanc said that many PC makers are treating ADSL as the next generation of modem, and offering it in a dual configuration with V90 hardware. Someone buying such a machine can run either service, but will still need to make an additional modem purchase to accommodate cable service.

Once installed, the service can increase speeds 10 times uploading and 20 times downloading from what is now average; 56-kilobit service. Another advantage to ADSL is the ability to eliminate "truck rolls," where a technician needs to visit a residence in order to install additional lines.

Still, the largest service obstacle is the quality of home lines, which LeBlanc called "a nasty place." So some rewiring may be needed. LeBlanc said that G.Lite will become a residential offering, with businesses choosing to install standard ADSL. G.Lite, while not as robust, does not lose as much powered when serving a location farther away from the central switching office.



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