G&M article on Gigabit in Toronto with Rogers & Bell

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I Plan to Stick Around
Posts: 108

G&M article on Gigabit in Toronto with Rogers & Bell



"Rogers has completed its upgrade to the next generation of cable technology (known as DOCSIS 3.1) and said Thursday that between itself and BCE, the city of Toronto is now covered by gigabit Internet services."

"It costs cable companies such as Rogers and Videotron Ltd., which is BCE’s biggest competitor in Quebec, about $250 to $300 a home to upgrade their networks and provide gigabit speeds, according to an estimate by Desjardins Securities Inc. analyst Maher Yaghi. In contrast, he estimates it costs BCE from $1,000 to $1,500 a home to make its fibre-to-the-home upgrades.


However, in both Toronto and Montreal, BCE is making use of aerial options – such as hydro poles – to string its cables, which is cheaper than building underground. Barclay’s Capital analyst Phillip Huang estimates it costs about $400 to $700 to connect homes using aerial infrastructure. He said that while 60 per cent of the build in Toronto had to be done through buried infrastructure, it will only be about 10 per cent in Montreal."


***Edited Labels***

Posts: 1,954

Re: G&M article on Gigabit in Toronto with Rogers & Bell

Good evening @yyzsam,


Thank you for sharing this article with the Community Smiley Wink


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I'm a Senior Advisor
Posts: 2,144

Re: G&M article on Gigabit in Toronto with Rogers & Bell

Well, the marketing war on Gigabit Internet has fully kicked in I see.


Guess, Rogers has to work at keeping their customers, after their failure with IP TV, and all the issues with implementing upgrades to the Nextbox settop boxes, and the Motorolo rollout challenges in the east.


At this point, Bell has a new set of information out there same day, the Rogers material came out - the marketing departments are certainly a group on both sides that move real fast - if we could only get as fast response on technical and service issues - Smiley Happy


But that aside, Rogers has made a number of claims in comparisons and statistics on fastest Internet speeds and so forth, with the usual side by side comparison of us versus them.


Bell has come out with the only comparison they can make at this moment in that they can do up to 50 up, whereas Rogers had to step back to 30 up when they tried to claim they could sell 50 to users, when they did not have a modem that supported that speed in a stable manner and has been spending months doing beta testing to deal with a wide range of issues.


When you look at the map, we see that Bell's footprint of FTTH is expanding rapidly - I have two family members who have gone to full packages with Bell because their price point was much better, even though they had Rogers Gigabit available. 


So the real test will come when the customer numbers begin to roll out - but for me - others have heard me say this before - I don't need that speed - I am a two user home, and I would argue that most users don't need it either and need to seriously look at all packages, and take a close look at the little people sitting at the bottom of the package - and one last thing - yes TV will slow down Internet on Bell, sure if you are running 4 TV's at the same time, part of the reason why Bell also only has 4 tuners and will Rogers have the same limitation once they bring TV to IPTV.


Time will tell, but the marketing is always intriguing to me.


Now if I could just make it go away when I log into MYROGERS, I don't really want to see any of the marketing when I am doing my day to day business.


Technology moves on, while I continue to cut back - can I get a great deal on the lowest packages with a full choice of my channels, ala carte.  That is one thing Rogers cannot currently advertise since they have currently chosen not to, making the price of adding channels more expensive than the competition.


I figure all is fair - if Rogers is going to push advertising at us, it is fair for all of us to fully research the differences.


So what will be the next marketing pitch - we certainly do not hear much about cable TV - while Bell has lots to push on their comparison table on that side.


Good morning everyone.


I Plan to Stick Around
Posts: 108

Re: G&M article on Gigabit in Toronto with Rogers & Bell

Bell actually offers 100 up for residential and 250 for small business.

I have no regrets switching to Bell's FTTH. Other than a media converter (fibre to Ethernet) the fibre cable plugs directly into my firewall, no modem to deal with.

Rogers should really move to fibre for the last mile and dump this DOCSIS nightmare.

But once Rogers sorts their mess in my hood I may dump my DSL backup and come back to Rogers on a slower plan for my backup line.
I'm an Advisor
Posts: 764

Re: G&M article on Gigabit in Toronto with Rogers & Bell

Great insights, @BS.  Our situation - we are a three (adult) person home who regularly:


- Stream content to big screen TV at 4K, while simultaneously streaming to another TV at 1080p.

- Multiple video streams to devices (phones, tablets) from various sources (Rogers anyplace TV, YouTube, etc).

- Me: Purchase + download large games/demos from Steam, uPlay, Origin, PSN, XBL.

- Me: Purchase + download HD movies from iTunes Store, Windows Store, CinemaNow, etc.

- Me: Download large files from Microsoft, work from home using Office 365.

- Me: Upload large amounts of encrypted data using CrashPlan (system/file/movie/images/games backups).


We are able to do the first five activities with no problem on an Ignite 250/20 plan, but the sixth activity - uploading - causes all kinds of issues.


Example: If we try to view a 4K Netflix stream while CrashPlan is uploading (it always is!) and other users are streaming YouTube 1080p...RemotePlay (Playstation Vita to PS4) stops working.  If we stop the CrashPlan upload... RemotePlay works.  CrashPlan client uses no more than 3Mbps upload.


Example 2: If we try to view a 4K Netflix stream while CrashPlan is uploading (again, always!) and other users are streaming YouTube 1080p...remote access to our computers via Splashtop or Team Viewer performs VERY poorly.  If we stop the CrashPlan upload...everything is fine.  Again, CrashPlan client uses no more than 3Mbps upload.



For families who:

- Consume media via 4K streaming (Netflix, Vizio Smart TV apps, etc),

- Consume media via 720p/1080p streaming on multiple devices (YouTube, PSN, XBL, iTunes, etc),

- Purchase movies & games digitally (instead of on physical disc),

- Work from home using Office 365, VPN or remote work software (Citrix, Remote Desktop Services, etc),

- Backup (upload) data to the cloud via backup software or clients (CrashPlan, Dropbox, Box.net, OneDrive, etc),


...having having a large upload pipe is very important - I would love to see a 200/30 or 200/50 tier become available for the reasons stated above.


I only hope that hitron can "push" further with their implementation of DOCSIS to provide more upload & download speeds (current hitron wireless gateway lineup).


EDIT: For anyone who wants to "geek out" on what's next with DOCSIS, check out: http://www.cablelabs.com/full-duplex-docsis-3-1-technology-raising-the-ante-with-symmetric-gigabit-s...


Quote from link:

>> "These developments are expected to yield DOCSIS 3.1 network performance of up to 10 Gbps symmetrical on 1 GHz HFC networks, with the potential for even higher performance by utilizing spectrum that is currently available for future expansion above 1 GHz..."


I assume we may only see this after Rogers goes full IPTV, since this will use all of the coax cable (and not just part of it).

I'm an Advisor
Posts: 764

Re: G&M article on Gigabit in Toronto with Rogers & Bell

Hello @yyzsam,

Man, you ninja'd me (that's what I get for being a windbag, I guess!)    Smiley Happy


I would like to see Rogers go FTTH - they were doing it before, but retired the package.  The problem is that running fibre to EVERY home or cable junction box is cost prohibitive.  My last job had me purchasing - in bulk - fibre cable for my datacenter...and the stuff wasn't cheap! (neither was I - a good fibre tech is hard to find).


DOCSIS allows Rogers to leverage the investments and infrastructure they already have.


Also: Bell copper and fibre junction boxes are in very poor shape (at least in this area).  Check out my tweet to Bell (click image to enlarge): https://twitter.com/TheRobinDP/status/846815892600242176


...if I deployed something that looked like that, I would have been immediately fired and tossed off the roof


This is the main reason I stick with Rogers - I have seen what the Rogers junction box looks like inside...and it is much better.  Can you imagine your data and voice flowing through that mess of a junction box?

I'm Here A Lot
Posts: 5

Re: G&M article on Gigabit in Toronto with Rogers & Bell

I do believe Rogers is installing FTTH on all new construction projects. In Oshawa, ON all new homes have Fibre coming to the basement. It's just converted to regular coax before it goes to the modem.

I'm an Advisor
Posts: 764

Re: G&M article on Gigabit in Toronto with Rogers & Bell

Hello @Adva,

Good to know - FTTH is amazing for data.


Have seen many other construction projects use FTTN (fibre to node then coax to junction boxes/homes).

I'm a Senior Advisor
Posts: 2,144

Re: G&M article on Gigabit in Toronto with Rogers & Bell

My sister is in Collingwood in a new build neighbourhood - interesting thing is they have Bell FTTH sitting rolled up on the side of their demarcation box, yet only have a very slow speed on Rogers - he is switching for multiple reasons beyond speed, but when I told him he had FTTH hanging on his wall, which he didn't know, he jumped real quick.  Seems most new builds are getting it.


I like you do a lot of uploading - I work on family trees and load a lot of high resolution pictures and large scans of documents, and it is a long sit waiting for the synch to complete, because it has to do upload of my work on the computer, then do upload, download and synch comparisons - it is the upload speed that kills me - download, as you can guess, with one computer, a couple of cell phones, and lots of time on my hands as I don't work, I don't mind waiting.


Your presentation of your needs is a great example to others of how to seriously look at their needs for data, rather than just the "wow" effect. My daughter's Bell GB downloads mean that she can't even measure the download time on most things, so doubling up from nothing to a slower speed has never bothered her before - they stream one TV and use two computers, and she does content auditing for Telus On Demand (she gets to watch TV and work), and gets to work at home when she wishes.  So she is on the computer a lot, but it is merely data configuration data, so it is low demand.


As for the old Bell junction boxes - I used to manage our server farm and networking for an organization, and I agree, if I kept running a mess like those boxes, I would have been fired.  I had a full time cabling tech who was great and we contracted in for higher end stuff beyond his skill set.


Interestingly, they still run the whole internal and external organization on a 250 business implementation, and they have two feeds now - one for image files at GB and a higher provisioned upload for those files - they have been on fibre since it was first rolled out to hospital settings in Toronto.  They have a lot internal load management equipment in place to balance loads to high end users, image file transfer, versus general Internet searches.


One last trivia comment - where Bell will probably win on the numbers once you get out of southern Ontario - Bell has been pushing Fibre into much of Ontario as they update their backbone - in Collingwood and area, even a small place like Thornbury, the fibre is hanging on the poles ready to role out, and even along main streets in Whitby, they are all sitting on the poles waiting for them to push expenditures andmarketing sales to run them to the homes.  On one of our major streets, you will see coiled fibre sitting on the poles waithing to be pushed out.  And we got lucky in our area if I want to go bell - the junction box got hit by a car and had to be replaced, so they made it both legacy and fibre ready. We don't have bell services, so I got to sit and watch them do the work, and put the fibre nodes in.  The access panels are on the corners of each street under the sidewalks, or in underground boxes, just waiting for them to coredrill the fibre to the homes in our neighbourhood - last I heard, probably next year.  No more back hoe trench digging anymore.


But I digress - love the technical discussion and insights you provide.



I'm a Senior Advisor
Posts: 2,144

Re: G&M article on Gigabit in Toronto with Rogers & Bell



You definitely have high end work and personal use - me it is just entertainment, and I only bought my HD screen three years ago - not even Smart TV.  Fought it for years, but then we went on a trip to a resort and they had 50 inch screens, and my wife decide she just had to have the bigger screen due to aging eyes.  It helped both of us (except when Nextbox pulled that crazy stunt of bad font choice, texturing and background foreground colouring).  Although, given our vision (the joys of aging, it is the size we enjoy - we actually feed netflix at SD because we can't see the difference from 10 feet out from screen which is the layout of our living room and boy it saves data when we stream netflix. I think I stream 720 and 360 on my laptop, these old eyes see no difference.


You are the perfect candidate for the need for upload speed improvement.


Great review. Excellent detail.