APNIC GUEST POST: The role of cellular networks in the Internet

The growing key role of cellular networks for providing Internet connectivity in many places around the world makes the case for considering such networks as part of the critical infrastructure of these economies. An invited post for the APNIC blog. Read full paper here The tremendous growth of the mobile Internet, with over 11 billion devices … Read more

A Northwestern Professor Is Figuring Out Why Inflight WiFi Is So Terrible

Fabián Bustamante, a professor at Northwestern University’s McCormick School of Engineering, studies the interaction between flights and Internet connection, and his team of researchers recently developed an app called WiFly. Passengers put their flight number in the app once they’ve purchased inflight WiFi, and the app will show connectivity speed across the duration of the trip, plus contribute data to research that could improve the speed of WiFi on planes.

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Understanding Inflight WiFi’s Poor Performance

Within just a couple of years, inflight WiFi has moved from a luxury to a near commodity for most continental flights. Prices for the service range as widely as their apparent performance. In one extreme, JetBlue recently announced it will make WiFi available for free. With other airlines, a monthly access plan can set you back as much as $50.

Read more on Northwestern News

A peek inside the Internet’s favorite file-sharing network

More than a quarter of all Internet traffic belongs to BitTorrent, a file-sharing system that allows users to swap everything from music to movies. Now, for the first time, researchers have revealed a link between a country’s economy and the type of files its residents download from BitTorrent. The findings are shedding new light on online behavior and could help law enforcement track down Internet pirates.

Read more on Science Magazine