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Re: death of the net predicted by deloitte -- film at 11

  • From: Stephen Sprunk
  • Date: Sun Feb 11 22:46:48 2007

Thus spake "Daniel Senie" <[email protected]>
At 02:57 PM 2/11/2007, Paul Vixie wrote:
...wouldn't there be, if interdomain multicast existed and had a billing
model that could lead to a compelling business model? right now, to the
best of my knowledge, all large multicast flows are still intradomain.

IP Multicast as a solution to video distribution is a non-starter. IP Multicast for the wide area is a failure. It assumes large numbers of people will watch the same content at the same time. The usage model that could work for it most mimics the broadcast environment before cable TV, when there were anywhere from three to ten channels to choose from, and everyone watched one of those. That model has not made sense in a long time. The proponents of IP Multicast seem to have failed to notice this.

IPmc would be useful for sports, news, and other live events. Think about how many people sit around their TVs staring at such things; it's probably a significant fraction of all TV-watching time. Better yet, folks who want to watch particular sports games will be concentrated in the two cities that are playing (i.e. high fanout at the bottom of the tree), which multicast delivery excels at compared to unicast.

For non-live content, even if one assumes people want their next episode of "24" on demand, wouldn't it make more sense to multicast it to STBs that are set to record it (or that predict their owners will want to see it), vs. using P2P or direct download? That'll save you gobs and gobs of bandwidth _immediately following the new program's release_. After that majority of viewers get their copy, you can transition the program to another system (e.g. P2P) that is more amenable to on-demand downloading of "old" content.

Of course, this is a pointless discussion since residential multicast is virtually non-existent today, and there's no sign of it being imminent. Anyone want to take bets on whether IPmc or IPv6 shows up first? ;-)


Stephen Sprunk "God does not play dice." --Albert Einstein
CCIE #3723 "God is an inveterate gambler, and He throws the
K5SSS dice at every possible opportunity." --Stephen Hawking