|Thu Apr 17, 2003 - 4:21 PM EDT - By Michael Ducker
Over the last month people have been constantly sending me data from the program Bmeter on the speed of their Treo. As Bmeter is described on its website:
"Unlike PING command which is common way of measuring connection speed with ICMP packets, Bmeter downloads stream of data over TCP connection, just like you do when talking to your mail of web server. Performance of TCP connections depends on many factors: packet loss, TCP window size, PPP protocol overhead, etc. By using TCP connection Bmeter simulates real-life performance of typical networking application on your Palm as close as possible."
The data at the end speaks for itself, but it also raises many questions about the viability of GPRS as a sustainable platform for high speed data. Its high cost, and low speed improvement raises the question of whether always on is really worth it. On the other hand, Sprint Vision with its affordable unlimited plans was undeniably the fastest; however it also was the one that varied the most in speed. Plain old dialup connections through CSD maxed out at the physical speed limit of 9.6 kbps, but it appears that if you are using Cingular Wireless Internet as your ISP you are only getting half of that potential speed.
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