BBC iPlayer success revives 'exaflood' internet bandwidth fears

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The recurring nightmare of the internet running out of capacity due to the rapid spread of high bandwidth uses such as video streaming and file sharing reared its head again this week after a sudden surge triggered by the BBC's iPlayer. John Stokdyk reports.

Observer technology correspondent David Smith touched on the subject last Sunday, citing warnings from sources such as the US-based Internet Innovation Alliance that the net faces a crunch because existing business models do not provide for the expansion needed to support exploding demand for bandwidth.

The IIA uses the term "exaflood" to describe the scenario in which a bandwidth shortage will slow down online services for everybody. The success of the BBC's iPlayer triggered the latest scare....

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