Pragmatic 5: The Next Ubiquitous Thing

23 December, 2013


John and Ben discuss the convergence of wireless communication from radio telegraphy to analog mobile phones, then from analog to digital, and handover-transition-unified devices and the importance long awaited jump to 100% IP-based telephony.

Transcript available
This is pragmatic discussion show, depleting the practical application of technology exploring the real retreat office we look at how greed ideas are transformed into products and services the content relates nothing is as simple as it seems that Alexander and Michael John Geagea region are very good and how you do about the site is like to make a quick correction are to a mispronunciation that I made in episode three arm as I had originally said that our Brad Fortin actually are I've now listen to an episode of one of his broadcasts are outcaste and its fracture pronounced Brad Forte sites wanted to apologise for mispronunciation of a bit like that with names like to make sure same correctly because I go we had last name so that only as usual universally accepted that UG is a bit weird so arm I was trying to be was names are so elaborate hopefully that's that's all good I also like say thank you to our entry clerk for the kind words he said about our bow pragmatic on his solo broadcast is a link to it in the ER show notes are the Andrew J Caster star and it's kinda funny sometimes and is even insightful sometime so I'll just check it out it's not too bad so why am I also like they have a special thank you to one Nathan Waters who sits very kind words on Twitter are you referred to pragmatic as the new hypercritical which for me is is very high praise whether or not I'm we we ever reach that sort of our standard or level arm I don't know but I think it's lovely with that other people are seeing is that way and dumb and that's great and thank you so much that I bet that's the sort of feedback bids are mostly one are keep keep keep going so appreciate that very much today's topic we can talk about is the convergence of wireless communication so those that don't know about my background I am an amateur radio operator which in North America run because man-made operators and I been playing with the radio are start out with CB radio back when I was 14 so I still have a very long history with with radio personally arm payable on matters of threesomes are you okay long-time County Mafia calculator being a twentysomething news and are always been fascinated by the idea of wireless anything and everything and it's only going more and more wireless are as as technology advances and wiser are disloyal wise are generally disappearing I think so certainly from products made by Apple but in any case so I think it's a fascinating area look at and where I will work towards as I will work towards our multipath our TCP so we will get to that but I think it's important to sorta put in context are one of the reasons why find so fascinating are so injustice assisting topic is when you sort of start just build a history lesson so bear with me if you know some the stuff that's fine are but anyway so let's get stuck in so way back when it goes on about Marconi and how wonderful he was and it was boats are actually was Hertz that originally demonstrated 1888 the Ian radio waves could be transmitted and received as she Hertz was really the arm that the person would have the most significant contribution to radio in terms of its invention but Marconi was the guy that scaled up and his initial his initial goal was to take radio and make it our long-range long-distance and essentially where previously telegraphed been around as we back she talked about a previous episode Telegraph was in Moscow Telegraph wide Telegraph been around for several decades by that point what Marconi want to do was take that wireless so that she could have our telegraph transmissions are wireless telegraph transmissions to between consonants we either separated by a large oceans or of course the ships who are at outset to our C can't drag cable behind them to talk, I wide Telegraph so why was a sort of a master that now the funny little thing that arm a lot of you don't know about Marconi was that Marconi was actually invited to sail the Titanic and he actually opted to take the Lusitania about three days earlier he was crossing to a crossing three days earlier our before the era of the Titanic unfortunately minutes are the man's iceberg and Saddam they did get on well so Marconi's wireless telegraph at that point was still pretty new air enters a premium I mean it was it was kind of modernising as a result not every boat had an Irish apparently overdid the other big ones did AA including the Titanic and is the nearby RMS psychopath the other thing is pronounced have spouse browse Mafia are they received a distress call that had been relayed from a land-based station are read from the tide about the Titanic and they actually were able to get there they got about two hours after the Titanic had actually gone completely underwater and they were rescue 705 people now the funny side if anything the interesting thing is that if that happened that incident happened a decade earlier is very questionable whether or not some people would eventually survive that long in the lifeboats and in the middle of the Arctic Ocean about time of year and it was no I don't think they would have saved quite some money so the whole move to wireless telegraph Marconi's are invention in Africa a couple of Marconi employees on the Titanic actually are when it went so well went down so our ice I think they survived another in any case there is some confusion with flair is that the Titanic was sending up and think that that would have been a knob that would have been the the frontline communication method before four radio really took off his and I guess elevators or scary wallets and get comported what you decided that they would have died because either deliberately put something up AA because it is of your wayfarer flair a red flare and they may lodge the wrong one and what is built that was nearby just that didn't didn't come and yet this year this is the thing is that although where they were was arm sort of a relatively busy sort of shipping lane men in a sense they that the problem was that the arm back then they didn't have all the aids that we have now and this is a relatively new technology so had had the Titanic not had are the wireless telegraph of the makos was telegraphed and it could have been a bit of a slightly worse sending what is already a terrible tragedy but anyway so I decided to make know that because a win when Marconi comes up that sort of popped into my head and I keep thinking about while you this is where it is transformative technology in a lot of ways so any case right will historical side that so what was been going on a course the telephones being developed in parallel services just to our wide telephone at the moment is right, both because we need to look at the convergence so a lot of people actually develops the telephone and this is a common misconception is that people think Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone and technically that's not true he was the deathly first person to patent it in the US in 1876 that a lot of people consider store about you undergone an extremely said, the next room and the guy comes rumours like how Jimmy was over speaker thing illogical consider story to be apocryphal whether that's true or not I don't know will ever know but that the point is that there are actually about five or six different people working on telephone around about that time each contributed different elements to it arm but in the end arm Bell was the one that got the patterns and many people see that as being okay with you in the pan therefore you invented it so in any case arm the telephone exchange are for me is kind of interesting as well because then the actual telephone exchange wasn't there had nothing to do with Bell and it was actually developed by a Hungarian engineer and on I really struggle with this name air out I think it's pronounced jemadar course gas and that was in the same year but the findings wasn't developed the telephone it was Ashley developed for the wired telegraphed because at that point because you Telegraph was gone all over the place so I had to do was glad they want a way of patching through a tell through a base for telegraph exchange so that you could connect up all these different telegraphs coming from where from all these different locations and passions through to other locations so that was the original idea behind telephone exchange and it was originally developed for Rav Edison actually so anyway it then got transformed to be used for telephones does telephone exchanges are the only couple years later so and from that point between 1919 60 you exchanges they became more advanced and may introduce rather than simply going tap tap tap to get the attention of the operators I cooperate I could get me to Bob's farm or whatever arm or Downton Abbey wherever arm if you show and his arm are which no sorry anyway and is in between 1996 today they started to use some a rotary dial system the only rotary dial symbol is that the rate at which the dial spins around are carried out a series of pulses and there was a pulse as they were literally like low-voltage dips or spikes are the one crucial dips actually and it would let you hear an audible click melodically quickly quickly clicked but because the rate of the rotary dial was fixed arm as your hand went one direction to dial around or seven you would get the A7 clicks at this that the correct rate so it wasn't possible to select game and so I go too fast or too far order drag it back it was all sort of barbecue must be of it was all control everything and she worked really well because you could then take those voltage dips tried a bunch of relays and they would literally be able tap out the number so you're essentially go it was a very basic form of digital communication because you are you transmitting that the phone number to the exchange surface exchanges use of the user bunch of are realising all electromagnetic electromechanical are sort of system to select the correct number and then wrap the call and this sort of stud to make the individual operators used to be a human mind sono sit there and patch the phone lines to literally with athletes and these exchanges became more advanced but that was all about a telephone conversation one audio line cake from point A to point B in and so on through multiple exchanges usually to get to where you going especially if you're going any significant distance outside of your home town and then in the 60s they came up with touchtone phones and they used our DTMF tones and this then allowed for digital exchanges so you no longer have to rely realising ago electronic go-go transistor a system which is far more reliable and far more compact than a more energy-efficient and less prone to breaking and that sort of thing so that the mould is gonna park the telephone discussion about the landlines peace and then we go switchback switch back to radio's hands held transceivers a.k.a. two-way radios so became widely available our junior time Second World War but the problem with them was that they didn't connect to the PSTN and you'll see PSTN come up in the literature expense of the public switched telephone network so essentially to a raise great if you want to talk to your mate round the corner or go maybe even 567, the way you put a repeater on top of the hill and you can all talk to the repeat on the top of the hill and that would then rebroadcast your signal on a different frequency.we would listen to you are now the split duplex operation, think so and are good for that but you couldn't dial someone you can say right away connect to your Job logs at 5551212 or whatever the hell and that was a problem because a lot of people when out now had landline phones at that point in history and they said well these two-way radios are great but you will amount about a wannabe Oracle someone who is not out and about necessarily Oracle summaries at home how I do that so in 1947 AT&T introduced the first I guess what you would call a mobile telephone society that is what they call it the MTS was shorter mobile telephone system and the because it was rather bulky jelly say it can only really be for the cars and if ever deduced a new need a car battery the amount of kicking in the car battery listings are final 10 W of power though a decent amount of power that you had to get out these have these big aerials in the centre of the roof because it's the best place with lantana and vehicle and star expensive though it is unbelievable you think $0.30 a minute is expensive for your phone calls for your voice will help these ruins might be equivalent.dollars of the times over $100 menacing insane ridiculous numbers absolute insane any systems were very basic you basically pick the phone up and you would get a line to operate another was a mobile operator make Apache through to the PSTN so you call anyone numbers that was fantastic but it was essentially your talking on that channel you own that so no one else could talk as your talking Alco and it was a very basic very simple and the high cost method that would work that was fine as well let's face it there were enough people that had these for it to be an issue obviously that was the last full of so in in the 60s was examined 60s they moved to an automated dialling system so the car phones basically got their own dialling system is in my keypad again with with DTMF just like you had with your landline phones at that point and a group of competitors in the United States created something called the radio common carrier or RCC you for short it covered more and different areas that AT&T system did but the problem was that they still have a roaming thing sorted out so if you left your home county district city and when a decent distance you a few hundred miles away than your fine was not guaranteed actually work so it was in is in essence it was better coverage and it was more interoperable but there were no guarantees so it was sort of role still very niche very expensive while cheaper much cheaper than the original system but it wasn't young it was it was basically still analog arm but the only advantage was that they'd they sort of essentially automated dialling process anyway incomes Motorola in 1973 with the first portable mobile phone that didn't have to be in a car and it was an atrocious brick of a thing and this thing essentially had 30 minutes of talk time and it took 10 hours to recharge the battery because it was back then you are there was a wave on the nickel metal hydride is parallel still using very low energy density NiCad and any a lot of them to generate the pouch and it was still analog and it would work with the AT&T system I believe arm it wasn't it's funny of all development has been happening you know was happening in America and also in Europe it in the interesting thing is that the first actual fully automated analog mobile phone system that had a lot of features that we consider to be no requirement for a cellular system was actually arm NTT and that was in our Japan and I was 1979 and that sort of generally considered to be what they call 1G so we are we are the 2G 3G 4G while this was what they consider to be 1G and is in North America they developed a different standard but essentially what same weight as differences of frequency slightly different bandwidth of the sort of thing and they called amps which is the analog mobile phone system that I was 983 to 4 years later but amps was different because it had a much better defined cell structure and frequency reuse pattern and wellhead use the concept of FTM a frequency our division multiple access which I was fond of your bit weird dialogue by the technology strange to me that because hackers have a frequency division multiple access is, a fancy way of saying you got a budget channel sit next to each other channel gates, there is no is a fancy about Ray so it really quickly are less assume a signal is an despond point is numbers out of the air I don't know what they were for amps but let's say 25 kHz channels CG 25 kHz channels backed up against each other you fit four of them in 100 kHz in a slice of the spectrum so essentially all you're saying is well you pick up the phone and it picks a chalice news well maybe channel one is a nice 700 MHz exactly Chelsea was 700.025 MHz to a new seal simply pick the Talbot is available and the new Gawain call the number in case through the exchange of the public network and away you go you from running nothing really to fancy not encrypted totally analog but at least it had some more structure about intelligence behind picking of spare frequency and the ability to handoff or handover as you move around it all the more about Hanover later or handle so what would you would you use same difference okay so fast forwarding to the 1990s and in the 1990s thing started going digital and digital had a whole lot of advantages over analog and there was much different systems like TDMA time division multiple access systems that started taking the frequencies of the individual channels and chopping in time as well is in frequency and of that of course the most popular one other time was European standard GSM global system for mobiles and of course the competing status TDMA our code division multiple access which is a switch technically GSM and CDMA are both are spread spectrum technologies so the not narrowband their wideband signals instead of having lots of little 25 kHz channels of a big yellow white 500 kHz one channel assay anti-separated data in different ways in this way were subsequent to G or digital cellular and there's all sorts of improvements by doing that the biggest reason you want do it though is essentially as channel utilisation so one of the problems that goes wide back to the analog that the public switched telephone system is the concept of essentially the channel of the connection so when I called you by phone line it will open up essentially will say okay fine line from your house to the nearest exchange is one physical piece of copper and that's gonna have audio longer here and audio I'm gonna send out to you so essentially I have the entire channel image directions is assigned to me I own that piece accommodates mine and that the bit rate on there might be 64 kb secular same want to go to an ex-telephone exchange it then says okay while I'm out I chop you up into pieces there was a time of course when everyone had to have an individual channel and you are simply patched through a bunch of leaves and you would amplify the signal and we get noisy and terrible and go to be really faint people yelling at each other from one continent to the other because the loss was so terrible noise was terrible when we went digital we could slice the slicer channels are and as they did with T1 C1 C3 these reasons on they take that 64 kb and they say okay will I gotta a 1 Mb per second connection here on fibre optics between two telephone exchanges so I'll put your little city for Gilbert's lot here in slot number one and you always get slot number one every so often such that your six difficult 64 kb per second is always going to be processed at that same speeds we always have your dedicated channel you can talk and talk, listen not in this whole concept of channelised data is a big problem it worked well back in the days when there were not as many people talking but the problem is it's terribly inefficient and why is inefficient is because when I'm talking to you is most will be saying is actually dead dead space and dead air so I'll say hey how's it going you will respond which time I'm not saying anything to my entire outgoing direction of the voice information is essentially nothing so it's just actually horribly inefficient and even a standard sentence are I think the statistics depend on the individual like how fast you talk and you will go depending on the medication you on whatever point is that the rate at which you talk is going to affect how much data as is actually contained in that so it was terribly inefficient and in many respects the public switched telephone network is still very inefficient in that way so when it came to radio and radio is even more of a precious resource because when you put a cable between point A and point B you one it's yours it's partyline it's got my eyesight is not a party line extended dedicated all the data is contained completely within that cable so if you want more data more bandwidth in the same from point A to point B just lay another cable next to it no biggie right so fibre-optic cable was a couple through 24 called now by the Apple near problem through 48 core double your money why not more fibres more data more bandwidth still good so the problem with radio spectrum as I saw how works so what you broadcast a similar power anything else on that frequency within a certain distance is yours your can be interfering with it if you try and do something else a few hundred metres away from another transmitter on the same frequency so that's a big problem so spectrum radio spectrum is a precious resource e-card is wasted with his dad air and that's what the original analog system did it was essentially just a replication of the mobile flow of the data was switched telephone system which was bad so the whole idea of of this this site this scrum does not really spread spectrum the more the digitisation of it is that we went from being an analog voice to located my voice coded local and vocoder's sole vocoder will turn your voice into a compression either an 8 kb or 13 kb stream is enhanced audio thing that Apple was messing with for a while and it's a slightly higher bit rate and attends the human voice into a much more condensed less than 64 kb second which is the point much less amount data and you can now digitally you can time splice it so you can say right you pursued John your calling Ben and you're going to get our this this part of channel 1 in and is GSM spectrum seen or even taking up a frequency anyway take up a small fraction of that frequency and time and you can slot in other people's phone calls and think of it like slices of bread right to stack up into the fold over calls in different time slots and away you go in GSM does Moyle is a discrepancy popping in to avoid interference loss lower spread spectrum stuff but that's not really the point of the technologies follows this discussion is concerned but the problem is even with that by cutting and compression is still a channel email be using less bandwidth as a step forward the 2G systems but it really is still just a channel so with 2G arm chair it was it was an issue because that was the time at which mobile Internet was starting to dare I say takeoff not really mean dear member WAP wireless access protocol year sadly Al Qaeda was terrible it was so bad was not and wasn't taking life is just that it began to be feasible rate you could potentially do some work but not really you exactly and the language that they had for it was such a stripped down version of what was acceptable and you have a WAP interface for RM had had a Motorola Company which was our resistive touchscreen phone the screen size was probably about half if you cut iPhones current iPhone screen and half was a sugary small that may be 1/3 and dumb I still got this somewhere I have nothing on I don't go to the kids to play with because it was well useless to me it was dead to me now anyway so why am smartphone circumference, long way in 10 years but anyway it had WAP and web browsing the Qantas flight schedule at the time while because I was flying to one to Sydney for an interview and had a look at on WAP was looking out at the beach Michael this is just the best thing in the world you know I'm surfing the web and onset by the beach it's all just so amazing but even that was tragically slow was terrible painful and the reason was that the data that had been provided was an add-on technology so was never designed for 20 2G came out and they really think too heavily about data so I did as I started to have these add-ons stub channels if you will have your think about it and that's when you start a GPRS edge and in the case of CMA EV DO and all the different technologies had a different acronym for like gum GPRS is our hike I feel GPRS stands for arm the videos like enhanced service sell southern data got I forget I promise it is get used to calling Edgeley Avenue Darwin you just forget what stands for but I would have undermined point is that these add-ons didn't support large bandwidth of data rates because that the format the actual frequency allocation in the way the channels are processed it was never designed for data the lease not the sort of nearby. IP-based data and therefore it was thought well you are you you're not gonna wire transfer a lot of data is the environment where where Rim really cable while an ankle blackberry really came to the forefront is because they were compressing all this data on the server side so you get this data through this really narrow point out to mobile devices so and that was when they really took off along comes 3G and 3G was cool because they actually decided to put a lot more thought into weaving data into it but the sad truth is that 3G was really just an enhancement again on the same old idea which was you have a channel for your voice it is the channels for your data were were bigger wider and better integrated in the CDMA CID city May 2000 standard additionally Ashley didn't natively support our data and voice at the same time and there was a lot of people originally when the iPhone came out and they though the iPhone and see my iPhone authorise my phone when frescoes iPhone for think when I came out it didn't actually support simultaneous voice and data and the reason was simply that the standard at the addition to the standard city May 2000 sales are single SPD overtures just as a simultaneous voice and data are that was something that had to be retrofitted to the network and the my understanding is I think Verizon sprints still haven't done that my understanding is that scholastic haste so and I would say the reason simply because a 40 Y retrofit something into your existing gear when you can just wear orientated upgrade your forgery stuff so was in GSM was designed so that essentially could run them simultaneously that was built in the standard for 3G when when I updated your substantive 3G rate having gone back and forth between Sprint Verizon and AT&T the idiot is 3G as is not as fast as the LTE button on Verizon but it's certainly faster than spread and arm and well into the Goodenough territory gets its you could clearly tell the difference is clear quite beauty the animus of the thing with the arm we now when I could talk about forgery and so forgery is where things start actually get excited because forgery is when after all these years decades now we're finally done with channelised voice data it is no longer here is a time slot is a frequency for his ears is a Walsh code in the case of CMA we are no longer separating it like that everything is gonna be IP are packet based so it is a lot of other things of course the 40 stand LTE winemakers which are 40 steady talking about knots not that other one day GPRS thing whatever not GPRS sorry ma'am what AT&T does the court forgery but it's not really that one hour feel it's good sacroiliac business scenario something else plus but you and is one of anyway the point is that the LTE winemakers and let's face it winemakers not doing so good sides can be LTE's LTE long-term evolution is the aim that's where the parties at the moment and it's really cool is a lot of stuff in the background is a very clever technology and the world is essentially Stan is is beginning to standardise on LTE hallelujah right is sick of his GSM CMA ship were finally standardising DA lovely good at IP-based which is fantastic because now the data rates are at a level where you can now pack up voice probably you can pack it all together and so is packet size data you no longer wasting it so you having to have channel section the channels was dead space anymore that you still have to keep allocated for a phone call you can now just dynamically adjust the bit rate based on the amount data needs to be transferred a beautiful brilliant that's just the way it should be so you LTE is a huge point massive bandwidths I think it's you it's several tens of megahertz depending upon chaotic video channels it's quite impressive army Overman are design point of view but that it be very challenging to be honest I have to admit bits are in any case so why forgery is such a big deal is because of getting rid of the whole channelised thing is now voice and data is essentially kinda like your home Internet connection so you can say whatever daily while crossing go scribing to browse the web you can you do whatever and all for Mr over same connection at the same time except now it's it's while she is one around to whatever there is no other source of compromises like that and it is at this point we now cause the mobile phone discussion just briefly and now this will talk a little bit about what I sort of experience when I was at Nortel so for those that don't know actually worked at Nortel for about 2 1/2 years in two stents one was in 97 the other one was in now to the end of 99 through 2000 and the early part of 2001 and during that to 1/2 years I did various roles but the moment the more interesting of the roles was when I was doing RFI would design our in the wilds development centre in Calgary and we are working on a new project and you are cycling wide enough R&D and psych we got a great concept with gonna do something called appliance BTS and this thing is going to become the next big thing our neural year the team you're pumped up a site right let's do this and I'm off doing your matching and so on and looking at the different now network performance for prototype designs and there are little pumps in the stock as the tank in Hebron gets laid off arm renewed appliance BTS oedema so that was kind of sad ending last resort pumped up bit but hey arm it's okay if it happens right stock as the take it happens and Nortel now no longer exist essentially so dumb there was a bit of a sad sad story really the point of the stories and that upon stories appliance BTS so way back when Nortel had and not does not idea was, that it was just you need to Nortel locator was lots of companies were thinking this the idea is you have a mobile phone you personal communication device would have your call it what does is it is capable of transmitting and receiving high and low powered signals but it will choose whichever is nearest and cheapest and easiest in order to make a phone call so the concept of appliance BTS is all the radio towers that you see around around the city a huge loss of power the overall PO 36 sector sells you there is quite a lot of ranges you get 30 yards or so 20 miles 30 mile range some of the more compact only a couple of miles in high density areas like in in a suburban like in the middle of the CBD are central business district of the city you would have dozens or if not 100 of these things just covering very short distances so and we talk about this previously I think so the idea is that the appliance BTS was the next level down so you've got macro cells are micro cells nano cells pico cells and you essentially get the idea that the small you going the less range you have so the appliance BTS was going to be a product that essentially would work within a building that was gonna be designed to have antennas on multiple floors that would work you 3 to 4 floors and you essentially would it would connect into a data bearer which would go out to whoever you are phone carrier was and would connect up the rest the system so you essentially have a pico cell within your building and I would allow anyone with a mobile phone connected to the carrier of course to essentially get much much cheaper signals when the building is a majority people that the commute work you'll have your phone at home in the Newell Drive and then you'll get to work you'll spend a day at work and you'll do a lot of phone calls when you're at work so the idea was that you could then have this feature in a building such that you weren't loading all of these other even if they are micro cells covering for five city blocks you have pico cells within the buildings would take the load off of the micro cells or in the case were was micros the macro cells and so on and this was the whole concept and the final automatically choose which witch to use the idea being he was in economics thing and it held the carriers as well as the individual but there were issues and the issues were really quite simple and that was that the mobile phone technology did not scaled down in terms of cost very well at all so customers were simply not interested in paying that amount money there was also resistance to people saying what I want a mobile phone tower in my building I will next to my house at home one of my building I will work there 89 hours a day and this resistance inevitably along with the price meant that the dream of having every smallest size are radio systems for your mobile phone system sort of petered out lost momentum now obviously my my opinions on every long talking about here is this is driven primarily from my exposure at Nortel so it was a CDMA product it was essentially are you stop when Nortel there may well be other companies like Motorola loose until Alcatel Erickson whoever else then they may well been working on their own versions of businessman is is most likely the case and I'm not aware of what they were doing all I know is at Nortel's Kent and anyway what's funny about that is I now look at what's happening with multi-party CPI sought a smile to myself because I'm thinking that's awesome why is awesome is something else came along it was actually happening at that time but no one saw it as being an opportunity because Erin saw as being on a mobile phone is a channelised system I'm going to have my phone call it's gonna follow me for a series of handovers between the different size cells in sectors and so on and is augur be switched mobile phone system what they didn't see was Lindsey coming was something called Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi is where things sort of gets very interesting so Wi-Fi is okay in Australia we are when I big country in terms of population although our big country in terms of area wide you most recover level and the list comfortably and is we like to pretend claim that with a lot of stuff and we have but most of it is normal and significant that's fine it's okay to fight not on every country invents everything aside a lot of things is often touted as being a straight invention is Wi-Fi truth is actually straight didn't invent Wi-Fi what we did do though is we have the Commonwealth science and our industrial research organisation and the essential CSIRO essentially government research organisation in a hot common funding to do all sorts of things everything from dust astronomy to agricultural to you name it if it helps the estate the economy of the country in some way the fund as a resort re-research organisation so what happened is the there were some bright CSIRO scientists that came up with ways of refining and improving aspects of the IEEE standard of course Piranesi IEEE standard bites name which is 802.11 and what they did as they essentially brought the technological side of forward making it more reliable improving all sorts of different aspects of it most importantly though they panted a lot of these things so you rather like Alexander Graham Bell panned the telephone therefore he invented people think of all well CSIRO Australians we we paddled a whole bunch of stuff about Wi-Fi not all of it but I want to things therefore stray must've invented it well know technically know it was actually not invented by an individual it was put together by a working group for the IEEE rate so as bunch of people from different market areas are put together so anyway that'll be a history Wi-Fi and essentially it was being developed during the 1990s but no one in the cellular business was looking out of thinking about it because you have nothing to do with channelised voice that had nothing to do with that at all and data was a sort of the ugliness in the eye of the people design of the mobile phone system at the time because they were thinking about voice and data really really start to be an issue when they realised or we can attack on data somehow add to G anyway so to 11 AM B are the standards were ratified for the want of a better way of saying it 1999 she was in 2003 and was in 2009 AC was in 2012 and the next one come along this, you 60 GHz band for why gig should be happening in 2014 has a ratification standard will assist obviously now that they're planning to doesn't mean well so funny I think I think you are going with this name and thinking back to visitors in the 90s that that Wi-Fi was what wended the arm, Samantha legally 90s early 2000 than that Alistair is shipping it arm in the first among those MacBooks but am I remember I remember the jump between and this is just like personal anecdote but the jump between arm daily entered genie or the local bulletin board services over the other the the PDS gather rate videos the most out out out and when we first got a retirement want a cable modem and it I discovery ethernet and I can think of just because you got these two worlds rate you have the big computer geeks and any got the phone geeks and computer geeks are all aware of this is that this idea what's happening and what was going on here in this and the sudden massive boost in bedwetting capability but it still tied up in his wires with NUC we always always always strange to me was with the the idea of some poor guy running a bulletin board having it in my head having just a bank of phone lines running into his house or General Electric writing genie having you know having all this crazy amount I read it's funny because I guess I was right like deviant intuition about it was just that others seem so horribly inefficient and how could anyone afford make any money doing that arm and obligated make any money but I doubt we're headed here that the the two collide with the the regatta that we can expect yet but that's just that that's where this is going the bottom line is that Wi-Fi transforms the way that people see collectivity in what Wi-Fi has become the common ubiquitous standard and that the thing about Wi-Fi that makes it ubiquitous azole site that has allowed to become ubiquitous I should say is the fact that operates in this and is only non-unlicensed spectrum so when you've got your your AT&T is the open whoever else of the world we different telcos out there told medications companies they have to bid for spectrum they have to go to the FCC or in Australia it's Acma a CMA and may have to beat every five years off have many years designing it it varies but some of the three five-year leases and you literally pay them millions of dollars for access to that spectrum in these locations over this period of time after which the rights go back to the government and the government go and they put it out again my civil revenue raiser and the spectrum is getting more precious and Neo and so therefore the price a goner competitions, anyway are the point is that unlicensed means you don't worry about it so hence Wi-Fi can put in 10,000 Wi-Fi base station sitting right on top of each other if you want to and I will stop you so no one owns that spectrum it's unlicensed everywhere in the world mean okay I say that everyone a world there are subtle differences some countries have a few additional channels that others don't like in Australia with an extra two that similar countries don't have and I think Japan has a couple of extra channels of models has so you it's not universal but it's a is universal and it's universal enough that makes the starch that makes the difference in the two bands at the moment of operating a 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz and they got some channel selections and their full forever Wi-Fi that all unlicensed mounted data has become now the Wi-Fi and the high data rate stuff like that and and now just starting to trickle through some EAC staff are leased from Apple and summary of manufactures if you are round is that I see now supporting a cease and make you ones I think and escalates to become the next year ubiquitous thing that Wi-Fi is a whole was grey because people are now saying well I need a what I don't need buggies the cable into my device is showing up on everything it's even if showing up in not just obviously laptops which is the obvious spot and smart phones now Wi-Fi showing up on everything from TV sets to printers and dumb lightbulbs which is no incredible to me so things that you would never think hey this is now potentially we can catch the instep because now you our motives ADSL modems BIOS Routers although stuff now supports Wi-Fi and because it never used to be that way you get an ADSL modem or a 66 Sevilla 50 6K US Robotics modem and you plug and it would have a USB or a serial or even a parallel connect via our barbecue ago and there was a dedicated link one computer one connection but now the reason why financiers put a Wi-Fi router chip in your modem and my umbrella and high-pressure you've got yourself a Wi-Fi hotspot and anything can connect to it in the house that you wanted to for your business or your public park or wherever you're installing a base station so Wi-Fi is become ubiquitous and Mrs had nothing to do with the cellular social science network anyway until recently and this is where we sort of converge out to wireless stories so we've got cellular on the one hand which is licensed expensive bandwidth and you've got on the other hand Wi-Fi Wi-Fi is in channelised its packet iced and what we do is done with 4G which gone packet-based heavenly Cinelli essentially got to IP-based systems and yes they do they get along together just fine and that presents the possibility for the first time of having truly arm seamless handoff and one is a big deal is that in cellular terms and cellular systems handoff is sometimes referred to as handover depends on if it's your UK or US to whatever midnight got it all my work in US I caught handoff because it's one of the terminology but in any case is different levels of handoff you've got LeSabre base station handling 20 phone calls and this in itself if you're an Excel thingy was a logo of honeycomb hexagon and so you move from there is this a slice of the pie from 0 to 60░ when they mostly moved from that that across from 6220░ so you move from sector alpha sector beta or Bator as you move between that that's a selected sector handoff or in CMA powers as a softer handoff because you actually handing off a phone call between a loss: one until was cut another could be a different frequency but your patio within the base station is at a softer handoff that is easy because that's controlled by the base station by status as the artist are you start here you go over there saw sweet then the next level out matters a solar cell so you're saying right my modern tower doubles hell number one Tower Hill number two you're moving from tower one sector alpha to town to sector gonna hike a great no problem arm where all talking to each other because we are now where we were on the same network were all yellow are Verizon so its lexical assault handoff is within the same network things get more difficult when you do a network to network are handoff amounts they call a hard handoff in the heart handoff is pain hours because you then have to go all the way back to the base station controller and it has then talk to the other companies PlayStation controller so you could so you could roam between Verizon and Sprint so you would you would then be able to go from a Verizon network and seamlessly continue your phone call going onto the spread network amass local hard handoff and hard meaning yet it's hard because more often than not you discovered tropical you're going to say on this slot available I think it's kind of a not too late router signal are there so it heart handoff is a pain hours is sought from the channelised article you think about what you've relentlessly in sector alpha and all the channels utilised and then someone comes into your sector and says hey there only a phone call about lose my signal on this other guys sector and they look at their they look at the list and this is well below what I've got details available so get bent which point you drop a focal psych great so anyway this is all issue are so when it comes to multipart TCP the idea is, funny actually arm I asked what the law cyclically about CDMA GSM I was in the city in a team is of course we think CMA is better and it is and the finding is that the reason CMA didn't do so well I think is because it was a technology was ahead of its time is a cynical direct strict sequence spread Spectrum and what does is essentially all signals are overlapping on top of each other and is by using orthogonal vectors which you can do is you can literally correlate the signal with a known code sequence and that will extract through by doing a correlation that will extract the bitstream you trying to get so you have a wash code for example to Goma was chosen that that that code 1 to 64 LeSabre original CMA standard Dell Palau channel 1 or channel to channel 3 appeal what you code you got and the wonderful thing about that is that because it was all done are in that way it was active possible for you to be simultaneously talking to 2 mobile phone towers at the same time so in in GSM systems if you're halfway between two towers you've got the worst signal to both towers but in CDMA what you're doing is you're taking the signal to both those two towers and you can add them together so actually get a significantly better signal CMA is a superior technology handle panels multipart a lot better and also develop their failing issues because it can do that of course as well as wasteful of course because that's a precious resource you see me one phone call you're taking up two sectors at the same time to different towers you've remastered you can't be doing that that's not fair so anyway bottom line though CMA is all I was superior technology didn't really take off as much because it lost momentum GSM was this had too much momentum and it just became my Qualcomm brought them brought technology to market because a bunch of guys from coal, makes military and undeveloped US military develop CMA for military applications and cilantro bring it to the consumer market and had no idea how to mass-produce a massive project product amass our mortal got involved is a long story in Donegal about too much maybe that's another topic for another day but the point is that arm had also the reliability issues Telstra essentially in Australia they wrecked all the CMA gear out they persisted with it for a few years and I said this is this is crap is terrible were riveted out by steel later and then they start installing what they call the next G network which is 3G and now 4G network that was all based on originally on on GSM so they played with it and then said that it's too unreliable this the countries of Stockwood obviously Verizon spreaders of jobs around the world the CMA by the numbers is not a very popular standard despite the fact the technologically superior to GSM but take that with a grain of salt boys and girls because I can't II admit I have some bias because I work in the CDMA team okay so eager sale Qualcomm's dark so I remember my bias et cetera I was there for the big ride up and down most of the ride back down on I only it's great the Qualcomm are stuck with what they're good at which is making ships and I say that what they're good at in air quotes that you can't see because back when we were doing reliability worker messed off the CSM channeliser ASIC was an absolute piece of crap it was terrible he was given such horrible yields had cope in our issues it was just a disaster and we hated it and them with a passion of mine that that some too much inside baseball so okay why is all this matter wide wave and care while I think this is amazing I think it's amazing because what we've done now is we have taken the idea of appliance BTS taken the idea of August softer soft and hard handoff and we have now is that you know what we now going to an IP based system we got IP-based system database system cited so back of a system and Wi-Fi in the home which is connected to a high bandwidth pipe going out into the Internet over a year over a data backbone and then you've got your mobile phone system and on exactly the same thing but wirelessly so what can happen can happen is Apple can say I'm gonna start a FaceTime audio phone call with you and I'm gonna start this because I'm sitting in my office I've got Wi-Fi through my office by also have a 40 radio Tower just outside I am going to start public data connection simultaneously between both of them which we did the owner that's exactly right yes we do know if you hours I was on the phone with no connection and all the contract on the and had you walked out of the building and gotten in range of a 4G tower and our range of Wi-Fi in theory if it works smoothly in theory the phone call should have continued without abatement now I tried people over a few people saying that it it's sort of works I imagine that what they're doing is they're simply saying it and I know that Apple adding a FaceTime audio in the 10.9.2 I think coming out shortly and everyone is raving that our because only FaceTime audio on the desktop and laptop as well as on a mobile system so you can do it on iPad iPad mini bejewelled on Mac gauge or anything that Apple makes and that the chucks go the game changer for you not just chucks like WCS that's the beauty of this is that what you essentially doing is is you've just finally all the water all these years of everyone being angry at the vector telco the charging $0.30 a minute for a cellular phone connection will you just turn them into a dumb pipe rate you turn them into your your home Internet provides why they've been fading about the longest that's the initial you're eating tea when they finally you had FaceTime with video clearly moored more data going to rate arm in this this conceit that somehow there is anything are precious laughed as is the Beano gives up on one of wild as well yeah I think figured out rate people are paying attention I was already over its it's inevitable now it's like the Iowa iTunes did to the music industry so it's it's it's all over one all over Bustillo I was a want our students thinking about the salt self we end up in desistance and the concept of a phone call because we are ultimately read because we got this as if channels disappear rate of this idea that we have to open up a lying and make the connection arm and we have this really weird bizarro audience for how we do it where I I decide I want to talk to you and then you're interrupted by a noise and you have like nine seconds to respond and then when your spine you have to give me all your attention on it this this whole thing doesn't seem to fit any more I think you if you've been using all the different messaging services in jumping back and forth between things like Skype and an Twitter and Facebook and I message and all the oldies different platforms like phone calls with a one weird bizarro handout at your standout old all-out hold-up and you'll culturally like it how long will that hold on when there is literally nothing underneath it that that makes it different while the bottom line is that that that such analysing of the technology is simply the method by which we you established medication between two people are not face-to-face so you that the concept of an idea of whether or not there such a thing as a phone call anymore I think that what we've done is we've augmented the idea of a phone call and the barriers that previously limiters in the same way the barriers used to exist whereby you couldn't call someone a mobile phone because modifiers didn't exist you know that change and the other in the late 40s but 19 late 1940s so we are reaching a point now where this is the next step in the next step is the idea that Nortel was exploring with the appliance BTS and what I find fascinating is how this was all made possible by two things Wi-Fi becoming ubiquitous and 4G essentially being admission that you know what we need to go to a packet-based network because we got so much experience of the Internet packet switching now that we know how to do this when you do this right and so they've done it afford the LLCs visit was wonderful stay in Scottish is obviously but it's it's such a big step forward from 3G its it's huge and it's massively significant and Wi-Fi has has sort of just come out of nowhere and because the guys in the industry didn't see it coming or if they did see it coming and never saw as a threat I guess it's deficiency are coming so that's why I find fascinating is that this is an inflection point in communication personal communication voice medication anyway and obviously also softwoods talk about applies the data as well if you're downloading a file let's say you'll you got pocket Castle downcast Rent-A-Car store the overcast all summer, cast whether cows and fishing rod from another when you doing that you walk out the door you offer three download it should in theory be a consumer download if you got 4G connectivity when you walk out the door without interruption without a broken download and don't go and do it again but Ashley tried that unfortunately on a 4G coverage when I walk out of my door I have to go about half a kilometre down the road 3G data for Geo has to be 44 at the work so anyway arm essentially that's what that's that's that's really were what my thinking ends on this is that this is extremely call where it's going and it's fascinating the way that the technologies have evolved to essentially converge in in a way that was not foreseeable a decade ago but now just so clearly makes so much sense about another question shall arm insisting on so it's predictably thinking of this mix and self arduously this is in this is no great news for the carriers though this is arm I think the Gaelic right the property being dragged kicking and screaming into this yet you even got this whitespace spectrum that we have your your arm in a user terminal is a precious resource in a minute it it still is a precious resource rate we just don't have an economic value attached to it and I see that thinking about were at Burgoyne for our Christmas dinner at an eight and screaming my mum's house which is next to a big apartment complex which means if I try to get on Wi-Fi honesty about each sales and instances of two wire 263 and are and although in basically all the built-in Wi-Fi completely un-configured garbage modems that came from Time Warner I just set up in images is just not pictured as the phalanx of these things are surrounding her house and then the the Wi-Fi there is terrible and interconnections bound to begin with sole is this can add up stressing both and is a bit rate because if if if the carriers are our having financial pressure for putting up more towers never seen Time Warner's flooding homes with the with you not with noise are we gonna is can be good to read how the EIR okay so you know absolutely look bottom line is that if you have this two paths you can go with you with frequency allocation the intake are fully regulated round and you can prosecute people that are essentially interfere with those who are legally licensed and that's what happens with mobilephone cellular spectrum and is I want to work a lot with telemetry for example telemetry system is the same deal you get your frequency allocated to you to the Council and the uses for transferring data about sewage pump stations at say all response awards for reward for dams and signs of water employs white stuff that's all regulated by the SEC or by Acma and or whatever European authorities may be in your country of choice bottom line though is if you go unregulated got my leg to stand on if you've got 10,000 Wi-Fi hotspots stacked on top of each other which is again I salute with the ridiculous example I paid earlier no one's gonna stop you and no one can stop you I have exactly that problem in the office building that we've moved into is are we now work in an office building it's a 13 story building and there's lots of small offices lots of Wi-Fi hotspots are wide done is no knowing that this is an issue is I specifically make sure that we had a Wi-Fi router support 5 GHz sorry you scan the 2.4 gig spectrum just like you said there are hundreds hotspots and it's insane and I'm here out thankfully go ahead but one of the four extremes and a resource case gutter scanner out from iPhone and I if a drop-down that you were for gigahertz are it you know you to see just everywhere they show up there absolutely and and going to the AED standard of Wi-Fi there adding 60 GHz as well so that's in a new nearly unrestricted license than most countries have agreed on as well is adding 1/3 band beyond that because 5 GHz is getting crowded as well so you know there is a recognition that this is an issue and all they can keep doing it if Wi-Fi continues to go the way that is going on everything supports every house has multiple Wi-Fi hotspots or pupillary apartment buildings ever more people in the apartment buildings are previously at say you had 100 apartments and apartment building which is a 20 of them had gigs in it that had these things or maybe people going Time Warner Cable were maybe 20 people had Time Warner Cable ever as that number grows and grows and it will is mesh essentially I have that problem so you need to open up more bands and they realise this is why they're progressing that way so you got 5 GHz band and you'll have 2060 stay until 5:30 and 60 gigs 9060 gigs about the nightmare to get through a wall as it is five gigs doesn't like a wall 2.4 is not uncommon either especially if you've got anything conductive in the walls of your steel frame house or very little significant given the problem that I see my mum's house rate is that yeah marking the size of the network is down well it might be helpful well another another alternative idea would be in a little bit of discrete shielding in there may well get reach a point for example our display UK example my wife spent some time living over in the UK and in London letters like terraced houses and Russell was on top of each other in space is at a premium SVS very expensive place to live in London so they have very very strict laws about sound insulation so you have to have standard/on the walls in the floor-to-ceiling building so that the people above you and besides you don't you annoy the hell out of you which you it in and said it can be strictly enforced now who is to say that in the next 10 to 15 years that we do not get similar standards and apartment buildings but for Wi-Fi shielding designed specifically to create a Faraday cage to contain Wi-Fi signals with an apartment to stop just the sort of problem I mean I can perceive that that would be great from our point of view mind you if you're trying to get cell phone signals that would be a killer because it that the cage works both ways he stopped off getting out your sister. Get men so are Wi-Fi connected and marginal are you worried right bound and only this offer that exactly right so the problem would solve a self-made so that I can see that potentially happening in some cases so anyway it's it's it's missing to think about what's going but arm yeah where is the mum I'm honest I'm very excited because this is this is what we envisaged when we are working on price BTS over a decade ago and we reach this point through a means on a path that I never would have predicted which is done which is awesome so the last thing I really talk about though is the problem we face someone I'm going on about multi-participated face somebody at all wonderful and beautiful is a wonderful thing in Yaya and it is but the problem is face some audio is just as an Apple standard and yon the difference is that I can take a phone call right now which is operating on IEEE standards and I can make that phone call to talk to whoever I want anywhere in the world through a whole series of compliant network hardware and mobile phone systems everyone well I can't do that I face some audio unless the people on the other end have got an Apple device and so that's the problem is that it sounds like it's effectively we are so close but the problem is that a lot of people don't use Apple devices so until four until we reach a point at which arm it is a standard that Apple that everyone else complies with you we won't have actually been able to dig voice the voice component of a carrier and carries will not become dumb pipes until we reach that point so essentially will then happen is that the carries or simply do I do now for iPads I have like a data plaque database data plan dataset you won't have a voice component was over dataset and that's where I will end up until we have that unifying standard you we we still have this is what could be isn't this great now but until we have a national standard we don't have an end result yet so it's were still a few years away from that I think is very slow all arm the Malaga canal with a series of marks going up and down the gradations of what's possible and arm there is a big is probably a component there with the our so-called subsidies and the way that the iPhone drives an organisation that amount and the carriers have at least some sort of vision of a soft landing at the end of this an Apple as a role here and you can bet your learner the 80 EE convertible doll that Apple was was to drive this way the same way they did with music in iTunes is that this is a better end result for the technology and the usability of users and it's going to great with the carriers and they just doing a little piece of the time children away to chip away at you your meeting was money for a person but you're reaching more people driving making less money per interaction with drive more interactions analogous to sit at the centre of the that the thing it would if it did just have an alternate you would have filed current economic collapse for a for everyone involved and if you have to situation yeah that's true I think carriers need to get used to the idea that they are just going to become data pipes and that this was a switched on realise it's inevitable but you this gives them a transitional period to build out the data networks and switch to LTE which point in time a lot of this discussion will become academic and or despair given Malpas be no different to the open variety come file saw, castor whoever you got over there over here going the Telstra BigPond or radio whatever your home ADSL fibre RISC that with Faisal with copies of Verizon which has our movement and allows the fires rate that there are there are moving into the keeping of what is the demeanour of the company's sole are coming it is you could you could just see that this is been kind of plan to BEP managed sort of deleveraging gas like movie resources into the new technology rather than just selling everything down in putting up with the disruption that would be exactly if you want to talk more about this you can find John on Twitter at John Geagea the same on out that that is unsafe to distortion outcome is an email you consented to giant attack distortion outcome and then identity can reach me on Twitter at the likes of Sam reconsider show announcements and related materials by following the Falcao pragmatic shall thanks for listening everyone given´┐Ż
Duration 1 hour, 13 minutes and 8 seconds Direct Download

Show Notes

Related Links:

Premium supporters have access to ad-free, early released episodes with a full back-catalogues of previous episodes


Ben Alexander

Ben Alexander

Ben created and runs and Fiat Lux

John Chidgey

John Chidgey

John is an Electrical, Instrumentation and Control Systems Engineer, software developer, podcaster, vocal actor and runs TechDistortion and the Engineered Network. John is a Chartered Professional Engineer in both Electrical Engineering and Information, Telecommunications and Electronics Engineering (ITEE) and a semi-regular conference speaker.

John has produced and appeared on many podcasts including Pragmatic and Causality and is available for hire for Vocal Acting or advertising. He has experience and interest in HMI Design, Alarm Management, Cyber-security and Root Cause Analysis.

You can find him on the Fediverse and on Twitter.