Telenor became the first telecom operator in Scandinavia to offer the new terrestrial broadband ADSL (Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line) service on June 7th. Initially available in central regions of Oslo, Bærum and Tromsø, the ADSL service offers businesses Internet access at speeds from 5 to 30 times higher than an ISDN connection, at a price which is lower than a leased line.
According to Telenor Nextels Information Director Arne Cartridge, ADSL is not intended for the residential consumer market, but rather for small- and medium-sized companies in need of faster Internet access. Prices are higher than ISDN, but lower than a leased line connection.
“ADSL modems use digital coding to increase up to 99% more capacity out of a phone line without interfering with regular phone service,” says Cartridge. “Users can simultaneously talk on the phone or send a fax whilst surfing the Internet.”
However, he adds, unlike an ordinary leased-line connection, ADSL does not offer the same speed in both directions. While surfing the web goes extremely fast, sending e-mail or uploading from an ftp server can take 3 to 5 times longer. Telenor Nextel recommends users in need of the same speed both ways to opt for ordinary leased line or frame relay connections.
“We think ADSL will be very attractive for telecommuters,” says Cartridge. “We also believe that it will open up exciting new interactive multimedia applications such as multi-player games, video-on-demand and video catalogues.”
Telenor is currently offering ADSL only in sections of Oslo, Bærum and Tromsø. Access will is likely to be extended to Stavanger, Bergen and Trondheim later this year.