[e2e] dynamic ISP selection

Jon Crowcroft Jon.Crowcroft at cl.cam.ac.uk
Sat Apr 26 03:18:29 PDT 2008

so in the rest of the world where we have competition in the last mile 
(i.e. not the US:), it is surprisingly tricky to change ISP - 
even though some massive fraction of xDSL is unbundled - 

[and the regulators looked recently and discovered that the widespread 
competition between cable modem and (surpirsingly) broadband wireless access
(e.g. umts or high speed packet, or even wimax a bit) 
means that you get techno-disversity as well as economic diversity

in the UK for example, there's something like 35M
phone lines that bt owns copper up to the exchange building, 
but then they get switced onto a humungous ATM net ('colossus'), 
and can pop out at layer to below IP 
in any virtual broadband provider's POP 

(asde: this business is almost like the way that 
some cell phone service providers work who don't actually own spectrum, 
but make a business out of leasing spectrum off of others- 
i think Virgin does  this with (maybe) t-mobile's )...their businesses are
basically being creative with contract models....i.e. combining other services
and content...

so anyhow, in the uk (sorry to be so blighty-centric)
you can change your utilities pretty much once a month 
(I just changed gas&electricity twice in the last two months to
get better deals) as the same virtualisation (unbundling) 
of last mile is done, and the core provider 
(actually 2 layers-  grid and generation) 
are seperated cleanly...

so given i can go on the web and get my gas, electricity, water, sewage changed , 
why is it not possible to get a 
SPOT price
for broadband internet?

i cannot see any technical barrier to this whatsoever:)


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