In a packed session entitled Wireless Broadband rapid growth in India, Mersh said that broadband was being re-defined because convergence meant that it was no longer possible to separate out fixed from mobile. The Forum, whose 200-strong membership comprises service providers, vendors and research centres, is involved in wide-ranging standards-focused work, from mobile backhaul to GPON and IPv6.
We deal with helping real-world problems that are being encountered by operators as they struggle to meet all sorts of challenges from simply providing basic broadband to coping with major issues such as network convergence and IPv6 migration, said Mersh.
While many of these challenges are common to all, some are specific to individual countries and regions. By being part of the Forum, operators and others in India can not only get the support of a wealth of knowledge and experience, but can actually help shape the way future technology decisions are made and ensure they take Indian requirements into account.
His comments came shortly after Mersh had revealed that India had been one of the top three countries in the world for broadband growth over the last year and could possibly emerge as one of the top ten countries in total broadband as early as the end of the year. India added 2.5 million new broadband lines in 2010 and was positioned at 13th in the world a massive rise from being 56th just six years previously.
There has been tremendous and consistent growth in broadband across India in recent years, yet this is just the tip of the iceberg, said Mersh.
Both fixed and wireless broadband options abound and the Broadband Forum is doing all it can to help Indias service providers engineer smarter and faster networks.
This had been the Broadband Forums first appearance at Convergence India. As well as revealing the regional and global figures for broadband and IPTV penetration, Mersh had showcased the new Broadband Forum IPv6 Toolkit known as BroadbandSuite 4.0. This defines the network support of IPv6 from core to user, allows remote management of IPv6 devices, is scalable to address trillions of devices, and future enhancements have the potential to enrich the user experience (supporting secure, mobile and nomadic applications). Most importantly, this IPv6 toolkit will help service providers reduce the impact of IPv4 protocol exhaustion on their services today while ensuring the growth of new users, devices and applications continues unhampered.
The global industry has just exhausted its stock of IPv4 addresses and so this new development has come just at the right time and especially for India, where an enormous number of new Internet addresses can expect to be demanded as the millions of unserved consumers come online, added Mersh.