Skip to Content

You are here

Applications of Interest

Applications drive the adoption and use of broadband services.  Many broadband scholars argue that applications and infrastructure are the preverbial “chicken and egg” quandry of the broadband world. “Which” should come first remains a question that has yet to be answered.  For years, theory held that it would take the development of a single “killer app” (like the light bulb was for electricity) in order for broadband demand to reach the fever-pitch necessary to drive large-scale last-mile deployments. Recent developments however, suggest that the evolution of the open source environment coupled with market demand for increased availability and mobility of data is accelerating the development and deployment of applications appealling to all types of end-users and consuming bandwidth at an unprecedented rate.  Without careful planning, even the most well-designed network can become obsolete unless adequate attention is given to scalability.   To see (conceptually) how quickly a bandwidth needs “add up” in an “All-Internet Household”, refer to this Broadband Speed Requirements table.

In order to successfully construct and “future-proof” a community led broadband initiative, leaders must take time to carefully weigh the types of applications (and the related broadband requirements) that will be utilizing the network immediately as well as planning for scalable capacity to accommodate others that will be added in the future.
The following list provides information on the applications listed including the current state of the application a description of evolving applications, minimum technology requirements, associated business models, relevant case studies, obstacles to further expansion, and other pertinent information. The final summary, “Network as a Platform to Address Productivity and Sustainability,” provides a unifying theme for multiple broadband applications.