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Google's Own Private Internet

Light Reading
News Analysis
Light Reading
9/20/2005
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Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) is building a network so massive that several service provider specialists believe it could end up with one of the world's largest core transport networks, effectively building its own private Internet.

”This is huge,” says Hunter Newby, chief strategy officer with carrier connection specialist Telx, pointing to several recent indications of the Google network’s scale. “It’s scary. They’re not fooling around.”

Light Reading, which has previously reported on Google's telecom aspirations, has learned that Google is well underway at putting the pieces together (see Headcount: Great Googly Moogly!, Google Backs Powerline Carrier, and Google Talks the Talk). It is accumulating hundreds of thousands of square feet of carrier hotel space that could host giant server farms, buying up fiber, and issuing large RFPs for DWDM and Ethernet-based telecom equipment that could total in the hundreds of millions of dollars, according to multiple sources at carriers and equipment vendors.

By building a core of transport techologies and peering directly to the world's leading incumbent telcos and PTTs, Google could end up securing and controlling distribution of much of the world's Internet traffic, say the sources. Its massive server farms would have a direct link to the backbone.

Google did not return phone calls for this article. In the past, when asked about its telecom networks, the company has declined comment.

One indication of the size of the product is Google’s recent real estate activities. Crains New York Business reported yesterday that Google acquired the rights to 270,000 square feet of space at 111 8th avenue in Manhattan, which is a large telecom interconnection facility. That space is expected to be populated with telecom equipment and server farms running Google's search and other applications such as GoogleTalk (see Google Talks the Talk).

Another service provider operator, speaking under condition of anonymity, says Google's got big plans on the West Coast, where it is negotiating for large amounts of carrier hotel space and hopes to connect to Asia through the largest fiber peering points.

”I could tell you more but they would kill me,” says the interconnection specialist.

Why does Google want to do this? One idea is simply to reduce its telecom costs and peering fees, which many believe are significant. Another idea is that by building its own core network and focusing on Layer 1 and Layer 2, Google could control the distribution and security of much of the content and traffic distributed over the Internet. In a sense, it would be a higher-performance Internet, such as the research network, Internet2.

”My understanding is they want to do remote peering and transit bypass,” says Bill St. Arnaud, senior director of advanced networks at Canarie Inc., who has heard scuttlebutt about the Google network. “By building their own distribution network they don’t have to pay peering costs. Remote peering and transit costs are significant for all the big Internet players. So everybody is thinking of doing this.”

Naturally, equipment provider mouths are watering over the project. Several sources tell Light Reading that Google has issued a DWDM RFP that could be one of the largest Tier 1 service provider contracts, with the total value expected to be in the $100 million ballpark. , sources say, is particularly excited about bidding on the RFP, given its recent victory in similar DWDM networks at and , says one source. Others believed to be in the bidding include Ciena Corp. (Nasdaq: CIEN), , , and Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd.

Because Google is acquiring its own fiber and building Layer 1 and Layer 2 equipment at global interconnection facilities, it can create its peering points at large interconnection facilities, sources say. This would allow it to peer with global PTTs and keep much of its own traffic in a private Layer 2 network, securing and speeding up the performance of much of its traffic.

”This could create a shift in where public IP interconnects,” speculates Newby. “Traditionally, people went to Internet peering points. But because Google is so large, it could be the Internet. People would go there and never leave.”

— R. Scott Raynovich, US Editor, Light Reading

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technolady
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technolady,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 2:56:17 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
if you are looking for something different and better than Netmeeting. look at vidrev, it is at vdrv.com try the download from the webloader during the trial. if you want this product for your company it can be free peer to peer, i would like anyone's imput on this. so
let me know.
regards
noreen
fiber_r_us
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fiber_r_us,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 2:58:56 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Comcast paid $100M for transport gear and fiber, nationwide.
fiber_r_us
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fiber_r_us,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 2:58:57 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
The figures I gave were pretty accurate ($100M for a nationwide LH DWDM trasport system with lots of channels lit, and about $20M for the LH fiber of about 20,000km).

If you are suggesting you can't replicate a general-purpose, go-everywhere, try-to-be-everything-to-everyone style of network ala AT&T, MCI, Sprint, Level3, etc, you are correct.

I don't believe Google is trying to replicate such disasters. The original question only asked how much DWDM gear you could buy for $100M. If anything, Google would be trying to build a very lean purpose-built network for something, thus, would not require the massive infrastructures that the big guys have. In that context, $100M gets you a really big network.
gzkom
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gzkom,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 2:58:57 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Comcast last year paid $100 million to Level 3 just for using a small part of the dark fiber Level 3 owns.

That's just a small part of dark fiber. How much you need to lit the dark fiber, the infrastructure, .......?
gzkom
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gzkom,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 2:58:57 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Dream on.

Are you talking about a national network of 56 kpbs.

$100 million won't give you 5% of a national network with enough capacity.
multithreaded
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multithreaded,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:30 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Netmeeting is widely used if a development team is spread across multiple sites.

What else free tools can you use instead of NetMeeting?
gotman
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gotman,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:35 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Where is Honestly? I don't see him on this wagen,
so i'm going to start the rumor he would hate to hear. Who can confirm the google crs-1 deal is on/done?
networker62
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networker62,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:37 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
I would like to come back to the original question

If you look at the GOOGs WiFi secure solution, this is nothing more than a VPN tunnel from the user directly to the Google servers.

Look at Googles FAQ :

"If you choose to use Google Secure Access, your internet traffic will be encrypted and sent through Google's servers to the Internet. The data that is received will then be encrypted and sent back through our servers to your computer."

Does that mean that GOOG is going to let all internet traffic of these users pass trough their VPN servers ? Suppose this secure WiFi solution becomes popular, the google servers will see a HUGE amount of traffic passing. Could that be a reason to build an own, huge network ?
Are we tomorrow sending all of our internet traffic first to Google before it is passed from there to the destination server of my preferred site ? This would really put GOOG in the driver seat. With one move, GOOG reduces all operators to bitpipe providers (from the end-user the Google network)
spelurker
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spelurker,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:43 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
"The reason VoD services haven't taken off yet is because the content available isn't diverse enough, it isn't easily accessible, and it isn't offered at the right price."

I have to agree with this. Putting on my "consumer" hat, I have to say that I usually don't want any of the whopping 5 movies that are available on demand from my Cable company at any one time, and I don't want to pay movie theater prices for it. And the whole "mobile video" concept is stupid -- not because I wouldn't want to see a movie while traveling, but because video is much less appealing on a 2 inch cellphone screen or on a 100kb link.

What IS appealing is a video that is of broadcast quality and large enough to fill my laptop monitor. We are just on the cusp of this sort of service becoming available. BitTorrent is just the precursor, while we are waiting for the delivery infrastructure to support this in streaming form. This quality of video takes ~2Mb to deliver with today's best compression technology. 2Mb data services to the home have only been available for ~3 years and are only now becoming reliable & common enough for this to be feasable.

Based on this, and having kept my ear to the ground, I think the "video revolution" that people have been promising me for the past 20 years is actually going to happen. (I remember being in the ATM switch business in the early '90s, and someone asked "can I really get video on it?" to which, my cynical response was "yeah, IF you've got something to connect it to, and IF you've got some content to feed into it, and IF you have some applications at either end to set it up....". My cynicism is fading quickly.)
materialgirl
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materialgirl,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:44 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Perhaps that is because anyone other than GOOG would be missing a key piece of the revenue puzzle. It makes no sense to get the ball to the 99 yard line and drop it like a LVLT.
jepovic
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jepovic,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:45 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
However, I think it's time to wake up and realize that legacy may be facing a serious disruption


**************

The problem is: From a carrier perspective, I see nothing new here.

If it was anyone else than Google making this investment, everyone would think it was just plain stupid.
stephencooke
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stephencooke,
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12/5/2012 | 3:00:47 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
fanfare,

I agree with you. Don't forget the MP3 peer-to-peer traffic that slows most of our home PCs down after school hours. Bit torrents are often used for peer-to-peer video files. Some blue-collar people I know would set up a download of a popular movie before they went to work in the morning and watch it in the evening after work. They were happy because they have an 'unlimited' Internet connection and the bit torrent peer-to-peer files were free, as long as you agreed to share them with others.

I have said many times that the telecom carrier execs are loosing a lot of sleep these days. In terms of LH/ULH carriers teaming up with local optical ring guys though, this model is similar to what started the CLECs. It works well for business customers, primarily large businesses, but as the number of potential customers goes up, so does the complexity of providing the service and the physical amount of equipment that has to be deployed in the field, powered, housed, etc. (ie: logistics make the business case harder and harder to realize).

That said, this model strikes at the heart of the RBOCs as they make most of their margin on business services (also why the CLECs targetted businesses; smaller numbers compared to residential with higher margin capability per customer). Here is yet another facet to the market which techies often ignore: legislative clout. This was how the RBOCs killed the CLECs. They kept the CLECs in court or out lobbied them with every level of government so that a huge amount of the CLEC revenue went to their lawyers instead of their investors or customers. Incidentally, it is generally, though not always, true that the more residential lines you service the more clout you have with politicians. Therefore you can win large amounts of revenue with new technology via offering services focussed on businesses but if you go up against a competitor who services more households on a legislative (read political) issue, you are at a disadvantage.

"Legacy" technology is what most of the existing networks run on today. Tomorrow, today's technology will be called "legacy". The key is to be able to look to the future but understand the legacy of what worked and why it worked (note that this may or may not include technological observations). Also know that a huge corporation, once threatened can and will bring enormous and diverse resources to bear in the fight for survival. Incidentally, they have also been known to acquire potential competitors. Money talks.

Steve.
fanfare
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fanfare,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:48 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Steve,

You said:

""Peer-to-peer content dwarfs most other traffic types.""

I read a report about 5 months ago that stated 30% of all internet traffic was in the form of bit torrents. bit torrent clients are only one example of peer to peer. Also, many content exchangers/release groups/teenagers getting content use FTP because it is reliable. There is also IRC/DCC and even web based access to content. I think we need to be careful about underestimating the type of traffic that is out there now .. and using this to make predictions about future needs. As someone said earlier, one of the best indicators of where a market is going is to look at the younger users.

You mentioned cable companies as the prime competitor for last mile access. You are forgetting edge ring owner/operators who, often, are network providers for cable companies. Companies like OnFiber, PTD .. etc are building out local rings like crazy. They are offering optical drops to their rings .. which dump to the bones at alarming discounts to what RBOC's can bring. Someone mentioned OPEX as it relates to less personell, trucks, boxes, etc. You put LH/ULH carriers with next gen infrastructure together with these local ring ops/owners and you get a mechanism that threatens traditional carriers in a big way. Big cable companies such as Comcast represent (or will represent) this type of model (although obviously they began as a cable company and integrated backward).

I see a lot of "legacy" perspective being tossed around here. I understand now why the next gen companies are not given much respect from traditional carrier folks. For some reason conventional carrier wisdom wants to push aside any concepts which threaten their way of life (go figure eh?). However, I think it's time to wake up and realize that legacy may be facing a serious disruption... even more than it has already gone through. GOOG is really taken an example of this model and simply brought it to the forefront of the minds of industry people. The truth is, this country is behind in it's progress toward a new model, and when it finally starts to move there will be some serious upheavals in this industry. I'll bet companies like VZ and SBC execs are secretly tense on issues like this. They may be smiling to the camera .. but I'm inclined to believe they are feeling a bit of a nervous twitch beneath their executive armor.
bluesignal
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bluesignal,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:48 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet

Did anyone read the google wifi faq?
http://wifi.google.com/faq.htm...

It's not a Wifi service, but seems to be an encrypted VPN type service that runs over any wifi service you already use. This would be really useful when you are using public un-encrypted wifi like Tmobile, Wayport, etc.

darkone
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darkone,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:49 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Fair enough on LightReadings part. I don't have time either so it is better to filter. I expected the forums to figure that one out instead of spiraling into a debate about the merits of video.

Google wants to become a WiFi ISP. It might be what they think they need to do to compete if there is a MSN / AOL agreement. I am curious why they would build it completely rather than say buying Tmobiles US operations or trying to work with an incumbent mobile provider.

As fits Unstrung, wires so old, so busted.

darkone
malakraday2
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malakraday2,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:50 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
"These are all technology-push services. All have been tried commercially and all have failed. There is no consumer demand because there are better and cheaper alternatives for all of them."

I think you fail to recognize why google has succeeded in its current business. Consider internet search engines circa 1998. Google wasn't the first you know. They came into a very competitive marketplace. However, their vision was superior to the market leaders at the time. Their service was leaps and bounds better than what was their before.

Consider e-mail. Their e-mails service has unique features that take it beyond other e-mail services. Google Maps, Google earth....its their vision for the application which allows them to succeed. Their services just work. Why do you not think they could do this with video on demand.

The reason VoD services haven't taken off yet is because the content available isn't diverse enough, it isn't easily accessible, and it isn't offered at the right price. Google, I'm sure has plans to address each of these issues. By making a network such as this they can offer a lot of content for a reasonable price. And you can bet based on their current offerings that the User interface will be easy to use.

People just don't understand these things. Its the same with Apple's products. They weren't the first ones to invent the hard drive based MP3 player or the flash based MP3 player. Nor were they the first to offer a music service online. Why do you think they are successful? Because they have a vision for how these technologies are to be realized.
fiber_r_us
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fiber_r_us,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:50 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
>The article talked about a $100 mil DWDM RFP.
>How much DWDM gear would this buy?

A lot! Easily a nationwide ~20,000km network with lots of ddd/drop locations visiting every major city in the US.

> Any clue as to how many lambdas?

Easily a cross-section of a hundredor so l0G channels on the entire footprint.

The fiber probably cost them another $20M or so(if they have actually already bought it, which hasn't been confirmed).
materialgirl
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materialgirl,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:52 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
I see GOOG as possibly investing to avoid a regulatory risk. If phone companies are busy building cellular walled gardens just as they get regulatory relief from common carriage over fiber landline builds, they slowly build a ring around GOOG. To counter this, GOOG needs to keep a bridge to the user open, hence their own network.
dljvjbsl
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dljvjbsl,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:53 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
I can't understand how anyone could ignore the oncoming seige of demand for Video and Gaming over IP

I suppose the issue is what kind of video is becoming popular. Is it the traditional type pf video on demand in which consumers passively watches a video streamed to them. I would suppose that waht you are seeing is the downloading of video to be consumed later. This woudl seem to be quite a different thing.

Teh other issue is gaming which is entirely different form video. It is a form of mass particpation.
irimac
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irimac,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:54 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Just take a look at this study, which shows a "slightly" different picture:
http://www.itfacts.biz/images/...

I would avoid any "religious" approach to this topic. Personally, I do not see any "killer app" to come, but rather a variaty of apps/services that are of interest to different user groups. So, the industry might focus on the "single killer app" and neglect all other services or allow the user to choose and explore other services. The hunger for more might come later on ...
IPforEverything
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IPforEverything,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:55 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
The article talked about a $100 mil DWDM RFP. How much DWDM gear would this buy? My background is in software, so I don't have a clue. Is this reasonable for a national network? Any clue as to how many lambdas?
Pete Baldwin
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Pete Baldwin,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:56 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Hi darkone -- The Google WiFi story was the purview of our Unstrung site:

http://www.unstrung.com/docume...

I suppose we could have cross-posted it here, but frankly, we don't have the space -- it's a busy week.
stephencooke
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stephencooke,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:56 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Video from the telco's point of view is a "loss-leader". They have to spend billions on their networks to enable the capability and then have to cut the price to get traction with consumers against cable providers.

Telco voice revenues are eaten by any broadband connection, including DSL, especially with teenagers in the home. The point here is that telcos selling broadband services are cutting the throats of their own PSTN businesses. Is this a bad thing? It is necessary for progress in the technology market.

Cable companies have invested in their infrastructure in the last several years and, as such are in better shape to offer triple play capabilities. Their last mile is also superior, having been deployed in only the last 15 years or so.

Telcos have been fighting to keep the VoIP adoption slow so that they can play catchup. Cable is doing the same with video-over-IP (note their stance against wide-area franchises for IP-based video). Telcos have to worry about their last mile so that they can enable competition against cable providers, not provide content alternatives. As has been mentioned on these boards this is an area where "Build it and they will come" works. If the bandwidth is there, teenagers will use it. Peer-to-peer content dwarfs most other traffic types. If the telcos want to take marketshare away from cable companies they facilitate peer-to-peer video.

For telcos to survive in a reasonable fashion they have to provide services that are not easily duplicated by cable infrastructures as they now stand. It is too late for "me too" offerings. Leapfrogging is the only way to go.

Steve.
dljvjbsl
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dljvjbsl,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:57 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet

Most folks here are looking backwards to how they use networks or have used networks. To figure out where to invest, the question is how will teenagers use the network?


Video games on the network seem to me to be community activity. Instead of passively watching a movie, people come together to participate in a shared activity.

So successful activities on the Internet are those actvities that enable and utilize community.

Note that in the case of Amazon and the P2P networks, these communities may noti direclty know each other. In Amazon, reader reviews and the 'others who bought this book' features are community building services. An amorphous group is created which explores certain areas of knowledge and literaturre. These groups are the prime value of Amazon.

Note also that this is also the characteristic value of small specialized phytsical book stores. The book store has an expertise which it uses to develop a clientel. The clientel, in turn, shares its knowledge with the book store staff.

So I wouldn't say that this is anything new. Teenagers with their video game communities are following a traditional route.

Unfortunately our industry keeps making teh same mistake in thinking that the customer wants technology and not useful services. Our obsession with video on the network is an example of this.
fanfare
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fanfare,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:57 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
brookseven,

I'm going to have to agree with you here. I can't understand how anyone could ignore the oncoming seige of demand for Video and Gaming over IP. I guess if you are out of touch ... and/or don't have teenagers in the house and/or don't spend much time talking to their friends then you don't have the same perspectives.

I teach college ... and the demographics aren't too far from that of my teenage daughter. I see much the same thing from university age students. Although many are caught up in social lives, surprisingly they all use video/music from online sources. Gaming is different ... although most play ... not all are into it heavily.

Anyway, I hope that the people who are spouting about how video just won't make in over IP will remember their staunch positions. They may also remember that they were told that they are already missing the fact that video is already being sent in large amounts over IP.
paolo.franzoi
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paolo.franzoi,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:57 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet

I think that this group has generally a pretty limited view of how things are changing. It is a generational thing.

For example: The video game business is now bigger than the movie business.

2nd example: The PRC has created a law that limits the maximum amount of consecutive hours that online games can be played.

Most folks here are looking backwards to how they use networks or have used networks. To figure out where to invest, the question is how will teenagers use the network?

seven
darkone
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darkone,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:58 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Google is building a WiFi network.

http://money.cnn.com/2005/09/2...

So much for getting a scope on LightReading. So old and busted.

darkone
fanfare
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fanfare,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:58 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
If you read my last post, you will see that VoD is already being exploited through avenues such as Bit Torrents, IRC, and many other peer to peer options. It is growing like crazy ... I think my daughter's entire high school d/l's its content ..., and they are not an urban school.

I remember the music industry once thought that d/l music was not going to take precedence in the market place. But as broadband opportunities grew .. so did the online music industry. VoD hadn't taken hold at the major consumer level yet because the avenue hasn't been there to make it completely viable (read cheap). But teens are getting content for free, and so they are learning what they need to do in order to make the world of VoD a reality. They simply teach one another. The conent industry isn't going to simply sit by and let the same thing happen to video content that happened to music. They aren't that dumb. VoD is already here. The question is simply, do you want to charge for it .. or are you going to let technology allow the average person a means to take it for free? Sell it ... or give it away? Which do you think content providers are going to choose? Because make no mistake; these are the only choices. If you are thinking security and anti-pirating efforts have any chance of changing this .. you are soley mistaken. The fact that foreign countries already have jump on infrastructure and IP buildouts means that content will always be available online. I hope I don't have to point out the implications of this.

Listen, when I was in undergrad, I "knew someone" who ran a dump for a release group. They ran 100 meg/sec lines into this dump and the dump was accessed by individual distributers. This was years ago ... and the content was flowing then.
shadowpawn
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shadowpawn,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:58 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Ive started getting spam SMS's on my Cell Phone. Someone sold my number to a group and there should be hell to pay - now about those bank funds in Nigera...
dljvjbsl
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dljvjbsl,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:58 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Not to be cruel, but "video is of little consumer interest" sounds a lot like one of those famous chestnuts

I posted an extract of a NY Times report on this board a month or so ago. It dealt with the business prospects of Blockbuster. Data in the article showed the distribution of consumer video purchase/rentals among the various modalities.

DVD rental was by far the biggest. Video-on-demand was in last place far behind any of the other modalities with a miniscule market share.

How long has VoD been touted as the saviour of the network? I've heard about it for at least 20 years.

How long have video telephony and video conferencing been touted. They are still niche markets. Netmeeting was free and it is both unused and unwanted.

These are all technology-push services. All have been tried commercially and all have failed. There is no consumer demand because there are better and cheaper alternatives for all of them.
fanfare
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fanfare,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:59 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
""Video offers little to no benefit to consumers. They don't wanyt it and they are not going to pay for it.""

Uhh .... what planet are you currently living on? Just because consumers are currently relying on broadcast for thier content needs does not mean that this is a preferred medium. The fact is that it is the only medium (for the masses) at this time. I can tell you that there are so many pirate content sites available that content developers/providers are going to have no choice but to offer video capabilities en masse. If they don't, they will lose huge amounts of revenue. Take a look at the music industry. Currently, I can d/l just about any movie or television/cable program that is produced. I can do this and watch it without commercials, and I can watch it any time I like (not at the designated broadcast time). From the "Sopranos" to "60 minutes" ... to just about any movie that has been made into video (and even before that if I don't mind watching screeners).

Frankly, I don't watch much TV. But, many of my daughter's friends do .. and they ALL d/l the content they want to watch.

My daughter is 16... how long do you think it will take this paradigm to reach the market masses? How long before this becomes a medium that is used by all?
optiplayer
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optiplayer,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:59 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
"In Europe, they are already charging users (successfully) for movie trailers. And they're finding users like to watch drama on their phones (see the BBC's recent deal to broadcast soap operas on mobile phones)."
-------------------------------------------------

Is this how we measure progress in our industry? Why read a book or newspaper on public transportation or when hanging out at the park when you can watch "drama" on your cell phone. It's good to see that the dumbing down of society isn't strictly an American phenomenon.

God help us.
fanfare
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fanfare,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:00:59 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
jepovic,

I'm chuckling as I read your post. I also have similiar questions about why they would build their own bone. However, I also see Scott's point. The concept of having a more efficient infrastructure is one that, as you mentioned, a few carriers are already capitalizing on, particulary across the pond(s). The savings in OPEX that materializes when carriers move away from legacy will be something they need in the future. I'm betting that GOOG is thinking they have a shot at knocking out legacy due to the downside of operating an out of date infrastructure that is built on an overweight foundation that lacks the efficiencies necessary to compete in tomorrow's marketplace. I'm not saying that GOOG is making the right moves here.. clearly they should be able to purchase services/bandwidth on the cheap; why buy the cow when the milk is already so damn inexpensive?

Lots of questions remain, however, I don't think GOOG has lost their minds completely. I do think they have let their egos stretch into their business decisions a bit ... but time will tell. I can't say I blame them, after all legacy carriers have been wasting so much time and money trying to build over top existing architecture and have, as a result, ended up with a complex, top heavy, inefficient mechanism that simply won't meet the needs of next gen traffic flows. I will say one thing jepovic; access issues are definitely prominent at the edge as of now. It seems strange that GOOG would seek to enter a market that is already being addressed on many levels ... yet they, along with many others, don't want to face the real issues which stem from a lack of pipe at the premise. RBOC's are finally talking seriously about this ... and yeah, I know they are finally building... but if you really want to enter a horse race ... get into one where the current contestants are already out of breath.

Scott Raynovich
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Scott Raynovich,
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12/5/2012 | 3:01:00 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
A lot of people thought paying for ringtones was bizarre too. Now it's a multi-billion dollar industry.
Scott Clavenna
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Scott Clavenna,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:00 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Not to be cruel, but "video is of little consumer interest" sounds a lot like one of those famous chestnuts "PCs will never need more than 64k of RAM." or "The Internet isn't suited for commerce."

S
Scott Raynovich
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Scott Raynovich,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 3:01:00 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
>Another clear conclusion is that there is very >little interest in video.

This runs completely contrary to what I have seen, heard, and understand about basic human behaviour. So I question this research.

In Europe, they are already charging users (successfully) for movie trailers. And they're finding users like to watch drama on their phones (see the BBC's recent deal to broadcast soap operas on mobile phones).
Belzebutt
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Belzebutt,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:00 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
The only way for Google to go is all-optical!!



Somebody had to say it ;)
dljvjbsl
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dljvjbsl,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:00 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet

... This runs completely contrary to what I have seen, heard, and understand about basic human behaviour. So I question this research.

In Europe, they are already charging users (successfully) for movie trailers. ...


The report identifies cost as a major inhibitor to data usage of cell phones in all regions except Europe.

I truly find the prospect of paying money to see a movie trailer bizarre. Are these the trailers of movies with cult followings such as Star Wars?
dljvjbsl
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dljvjbsl,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:01 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
http://www.actionengine.com/do...

The above is a survey concerned with the use of data services on cell phones. The issue was why the consumer interest in this service is so much less than expected. The usual issues with small devices with small screens and keys were cited. However a clear conclusion form teh data is that people access data on these devices for teh same reason they access the data network on otehe devices. The killer app is Email.

Another clear conclusion is that there is very little interest in video.

This industry convinced itself that on line pet food stores were going to transform the marketplace. With that proved wrong, the old saw that video is going to drive exponential growth in bandwidth usage had come back into favor.

Why won't this industry listen to its consumers?

Video offers little to no benefit to consumers. They don't wanyt it and they are not going to pay for it.
networker62
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networker62,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:01 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
I agree, the real reason must be the video. Take a look at "video.google.com"

In contrast to seach-engines, video distribution required a huge amount of bandwith.
The success of the video story will highly depend on their ability to deliver it to the end-user with good quality. I suppose they don't want to put that in the hands of any carrier.

Video production costs (as mentioned earlier) are not an issue since the user community takes care of that. This is a whole new game ...
sgamble
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sgamble,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:01 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
I think many people are missing the bigger picture here. Even the Guru, Bill St. Arnaud, couldn't have had his Tim Horton's coffee when he was quoted.

It's not just about tranist costs. Although it's a small part of it. Scott got it:

-Cheap
-Simple
-Less people required for monitors and repairs
-Provisioning time reduced
-Transit costs lowered
-SERVICES - the key

Video/IPTV, VOIP, Content, Data Centres, Data Backup and Recovery, Internet and TLS services to start. Pull a Cogent and say - "you want to connect to google backbone meet us at one of our data centres and take care of access yourselves..."

As for the access line being the 'hoser' to all services. Think again man! Fibre is everywhere and with them having their own network they will get awesome wholesale pricing instead of resale for access and IRU.

The vendors are in a price war that is at a peak now. They are dropping their pants just to get in the door. Get a cheap ROADM/DWDM system from a smaller player (Meriton who won in BT with Fujitsu) and a 10Gigabit EThernet switch provider with a sprinkle of MPLS that excels in the application space (Foundry RX series and ServerIrons?). CHEAP.

With all that said - It's gotta be a huge video service they will launch.

Steve.
ozip
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ozip,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:01 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
The more interesting questions is, how much money do they have to spend. There is a relatively recent Price Waterhouse report on Internet Advertising. It indicates that Internet advertising revenue was about $10B last year with Broadcast & Cable at about $12B (Incidentally, the total US advertising market is about $260B).

When viewed in this context, you can see why many value Google so highly. Internet advertising can only grow (newspapers is still a $50B business) and with advertising models in broadcast changing due to timeshift video and in the introduction of new interactive technology, the winners should end-up being Internet and Cable. As they currently command such a small share of the market, there should be plenty to go round.

As for carrier relevance, please there is no competition here. The only eyeballs owned by Carriers are cellphone users.

Adding hard assets to a household brand, seems like a pretty good idea to me.


OZIP
jepovic
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jepovic,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:02 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
IP, Ethernet and DWDM... Working at one of Europe's largest carriers, I see nothing new here. All major backbones (10G and upwards) have been built like that for years - how else could you build them?

It seems ridiculous to build a major backbone to save on Internet connectivity costs. Google is a major content provider, but far from huge. My guess is that google currently consumes a few Gbit of traffic. The reason is simple: Their web page is very "light". The searching and indexing is surely very server-demanding, but in terms of bandwidth Gmail is probably a bigger destination than google.com. Google can get very nice prices on their Internet connectivity, being a very popular site.

Also, I can't see how controlling the backbone could enhance the end users' experience. In 99% of cases, the access line is the limiting section of the end to end connectivity.

Oh, and Scott, Google building a backbone doesn't scare any carriers. They are already dozens of networks like this, many without debt.

I can only see two reasons for this move:
1) Google is planning some new service which requires huge amounts of bandwidth - probably some kind of video service. To get a reasonable business case for backbone like this, they would need to consume tens of Gbits, preferably a hundred Gbit.
2) Google has gone truly mad, and they believe they need a great network to rule the world. They wouldn't be the first non-carrier to believe that - IBM even tried it twice

fanfare
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fanfare,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:03 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Scott,

I agree. This is a scary scenario for legacy carriers, and the big positive is that they are building from a base of customers not, as you say, the other way around (with debt being the main detractor).

I know you loathe to talk about Broadwing, however, given that they already have much of a newly advanced network in place that capitalizes on ethernet and DWDM ... L2 and 3 .. etc., don't you see this company taking a significant piece of the telecom pie? In other words, if GOOG has the right idea regarding next gen putting away legacy, and given the fact that BWNG is up and running and already signing customers due to the tremendous advantages next gen telecom infrastructure offers, don't you see this niche player having the ability to secure their position with the customers they are chasing? Due to the decrease in telecom infrastructure complexity which will in turn lead to a decrease in cost, legacy is clearly doomed if the new model succeeds. As a result it is logical to assume that these low cost models that have a jump on buildouts will flourish. Since BWNG has a lead in this endeavor, might we not conclude that they will benefit from this shift in paradigm?

Succintly, how long will it take GOOG to build this dream, and how much business do you think companies like BWNG will steal from legacy during this time? As the spotlight turns to illuminate a low cost model with enhanced features such as security ect., companies that are first to market will surely gain traction as telecom customers begin to anticipate the benefits the new model (such as GOOG's infrastructure) brings. Wouldn't you agree?

One last thing: I realize that we are essentially speaking about two different markets, however it all boils down to telecom in the end. If one market segment begins to demand low cost/high capability the rest are sure to follow.

ff
Scott Clavenna
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Scott Clavenna,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:04 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
But this is really a dream network. Start with the content, advertisers and service, then build the network. Has anyone been able to do that before? (Don't say Cable MSOs, or even DirecTV).

* There is no legacy traffic to carry,
* all traffic is IP,
* Fiber, Ethernet and DWDM gear has never been cheaper

Sure, you need to hire network architects and operators, but this is such a flat network that it won't even touch the complexity of a typical RBOC infrastructure.

And the business model is so radically different from a CLEC's, which builds a network first, with debt, then builds out some services and tries to find customers.

This, to my ear, spells major heartache for traditional telecoms. Ebay/Skype sounds scary to me; this is even scarier.

Scott
rjmcmahon
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rjmcmahon,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:05 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Google's customers are the advertisers who are paying for the eyeballs that the search engine generates.

It's suppliers are
1. Dell (pc's, which google buys)
2. Internet service providers (which google pays for speeds and feeds.)


I see the primary suppliers to Google as those that produce the "free" content (which is in turn indexed as a "free" web service.) I wonder if this "free" model will work for video. Video is expensive to produce, hence suppliers will require payments, and it's very difficult to index. Also there remains the access network challenge where little can be found for "free."
nbsherid
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nbsherid,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:05 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet

Maybe I don't know enough about peering and transit costs (I don't work for a Service Provider), but doesn't this turn some of their peering costs into income generation?

If they have a huge inflows of data, then then are generating income from other service providers, to counteract the huge cost of outflows. On the other hand, peering costs are much higher (pay for the size of the pipe, not the data transferred) and they do not make any money off incoming data. Consequently, creating a transit network might significantly improve their bottom line.

Additionally, as the number of applications increases, the balance of data flow might become more even. If the incoming data volume increases relatively to the outgoing data volume, then their bottom line will continue to improve.

Is my theory anywhere near the truth?
mr zippy
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mr zippy,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:06 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
The obvious downside is that you are now managing a business that is very different from the one you started in. Success in one business does not always translate to success in a different business. (For example, investors regularly bring in "experienced" people who have no knowledge a new company's domain, and for some reason haven't coupled the traditional 1/10 success rate to this behavior. But I digress.)

A new guy just started working for them who has a fairly reasonable amount of networking experience - Vint Cerf.
Stevery
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Stevery,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:07 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
I am totally confused by why google does this.

I think it is quite brilliant actually.

Look at it this way: Every business has suppliers and customers.

Google's customers are the advertisers who are paying for the eyeballs that the search engine generates.

It's suppliers are
1. Dell (pc's, which google buys)
2. Internet service providers (which google pays for speeds and feeds.)

Now if you had a wad of cash, and you wanted to eat somebody else's lunch, would you go after your supplier's or your customer's lunch?

And vertical integration offers other benefits. Scott mentioned other services, which I think is obvious. I think there are less obvious ones as well.

The obvious downside is that you are now managing a business that is very different from the one you started in. Success in one business does not always translate to success in a different business. (For example, investors regularly bring in "experienced" people who have no knowledge a new company's domain, and for some reason haven't coupled the traditional 1/10 success rate to this behavior. But I digress.)

S
Scott Raynovich
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Scott Raynovich,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 3:01:07 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Geez, Panda, where you been?

Google famously built its own data center by stringing together thousands of cheapo Dell PCs with Gigabit Ethernet. It did all the software internally. This approach was used rather than by purchasing high-end proprietary solutions hawked by vendors such as H-P, Sun, and IBM, which were in fashion at the time.

Google's now doing the same thing in telecom. It's using cheap standard technologies such as DWDM and Ethernet to drive costs down and get "bang for the buck." Rather than buying an expensive "solution" from a service provider (hmmm, let's see, pseudowire Ethernet over Frame Relay over ATM over Sonet?), its going it alone with dark fiber, DWDM, and Ethernet.

I suspect that's where the bulk of the the world's telecom networks are going.

As for Google's applications, well, they will be more powerful if they can be kept on the network. Imagine how good the VOIP call will be if Google has control of the network and can connect your VOIP call directly from the NYC POP to the Hong Kong POP.

Panda, my friend, more on this later... I'm cooking up a column.



zher
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50%
zher,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:07 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
I am totally confused by why google does this.
zher
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zher,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:07 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
I don't understand why they want to do this, can someone give me some hints?
Scott Raynovich
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50%
Scott Raynovich,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 3:01:08 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
hmm, blender I think you need to think more deeply about this...

Think of Google launching dozens of business and/or consumer applications which they host on the world's most popular Internet backbone, fine tuned for performance. It could get quite interesting.

If they can do for telecom what they did for the data center...
rcblender
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50%
rcblender,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:09 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
Why make billions when you could make.....millions?

So it was Mini-Me I saw at Google HQ today!

;-P
phishphood
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50%
phishphood,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:01:09 AM
re: Google's Own Private Internet
I don't really understand the technical issues here, so please be gentle if this is a stupid question...

If Google have their own network will they be able to tell me that if I searchh through them and therefore get connected to a third party site through Google (and their network) that they can offer (at least imply) that I will be able to download this content faster than if I went through Yahoo, MSN etc? If so, they will grab an even larger share of the search/portal business and charge still higher for advertising.

Could it be that they will use a combination of massive storage/search technology/backbone capacity to become the source of choice for multimedia content? Sign up with Sony etc. host their content, deliver to consumers, take their cut and then sell information to Sony on what someone watching Spiderman does with the rest of their life.

It may be just be possible that Larry Page and Sergey Brin are sitting in a secret hideaway under a volcano petting a very white cat (one each of course)!
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