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Setting a Context for Networked Appliances Sandy Teger and David Waks System Dynamics Inc. The IEEE 4th International Workshop on Networked Appliances (IWNA4) January 15, 2002. Copyright © 2001-2002. About Us. Sandy Early career in analog and digital programming

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Setting a Context for

Networked AppliancesSandy Teger and David WaksSystem Dynamics Inc.

The IEEE 4th International Workshop on Networked Appliances (IWNA4)

January 15, 2002

Copyright © 2001-2002

about us
About Us
  • Sandy
    • Early career in analog and digital programming
    • Product management for innovative telecomm products
    • Almost 20 years with AT&T, ending as strategy director for multimedia and video conferencing
  • Dave
    • Early career in computer programming, engineering, and systems architecture
    • Developed many systems for telephony measurement and control
    • Network architect and founder of Prodigy Services Company
    • Dir of R&D at Prodigy 1984-1994
  • Together as System Dynamics
    • Consulting in broadband to service and technology providers
    • Technology, marketing and business analysis and planning
    • Projects have included cable modem rollout, VOD, interactive TV, digital cable, HFC and IP telephony
    • Industry analysts - website, newsletter
goals from iwna4 symposium description
Goals (from IWNA4 Symposium Description)
  • Network many kinds of devices
    • “Appliances (lights, toasters, washers and refrigerators)”
    • Entertainment ((TVs, VCRs/PVRs, radios, cameras, stereos)
    • Computing/communications (printers, storage, faxes, telephones)
  • Control and exchange information between them
  • Enhance them through interactive synergy
summary of our position
Summary of Our Position
  • Broadband networked PCs are establishing a context for networked appliances
  • Networked appliances seem more likely to succeed as members of the evolving “broadband home” ecosystem than as members of competing ecosystems or as stand-alone systems
    • Based on open standards
    • Accommodates diversity
  • We suggest that designers of networked appliances
    • Assume the presence of a broadband link to the outside world (any type)
    • Assume the presence of one or more home networks (any type, wired or wireless)
    • Assume the presence of one or more UPnP-capable “control points” -- built on PC core but might not appear to be “PCs”
    • Design “devices” around UPnP and/or SCP
broadband home
“Broadband Home”
  • Broadband access and in-home distribution network
  • Multiple devices connected to in-home network
  • Many kinds of media: data, voice, audio, video, control
  • High speed
    • Millions of bits per second
    • To the home, in the home and from the home
  • “Always on” connection
    • Continuous connection
    • From the home to the outside world
    • To the home from the outside - can “see” the home from the outside
the emerging broadband home



Cable Modem


Fixed Wireless




Digital Terrestrial

The Emerging Broadband Home





the promise of broadband
The Promise of Broadband

Digital radio and TV everywhere in the home

Big jukeboxes of music, movies, TV and games

Personal voice and video conferencing

Share photos and videos with friends and family

Work from home as easily as in the office

Control VCRs, AC, lights from anywhere

Untethered access

connected ecosystem
Connected Ecosystem

Applications and services




Supporting technologies:

hardware and software

networking evolution
Networking Evolution
  • Started independently based on different endpoint requirements
  • Except for data communications, most protocols are proprietary
  • As endpoints become increasingly digital, easier to integrate
    • Internet radio
    • CDs and DVDs, cameras and camcorders
    • Telephones (IP telephony)
    • Television (IP TV)
  • Full convergence mostly outside US
    • FastWeb in Milan (all-fiber, all-Ethernet, all-IP, all media)
  • Some home convergence visible (CES last week)
    • ReplayTV 4000 brings TV into PC world - show PC pictures to larger crowd
    • Escient “Fireball” connects audio and PC worlds
    • GE-SMART and Premise Systems building security around UPnP
    • AV installers moving quickly to incorporate home networking
    • Microsoft “Freestyle” brings PC into TV world
our observations
Our Observations
  • Successful networked appliances will be those that leverage the evolving ecosystem of the broadband home
  • PCs and broadband provide a context for home networking
    • US PC penetration now >60%, multi-PC homes approaching 50% of PC homes
    • Multi-PC homes are prime market for broadband and for home networking
  • Microsoft has staked out a position based on UPnP and SCP
  • Many vendors now collaborating with Microsoft, while others stake out independent positions
  • PCs exert a strong gravitational pull on other devices: camcorders, digital cameras, PDAs now in their orbit
  • Probably won’t be one all-encompassing network, but several interconnected ones
  • PCs are logical control points for networked appliances
  • PC core functionality can be embedded in consumer devices
addressing needs
Addressing Needs
  • Many constituencies
    • End users
    • Broadband access providers
    • Service providers
    • Vendors: PC, CE, appliances, networking, ...
  • Different groups have different needs
    • May be in conflict
what we think users want
What We Think Users Want
  • Be able to move from one context to another (e.g., play audio and video stored on PC on loudspeakers and TVs throughout the house)
  • Interconnect variety of physical networks
  • Network access and control from outside the house
  • Cost that matches willingness to pay
  • Easy and intuitive user interface
  • Reliability matched to importance
challenges for the networked appliances community
Challenges for the Networked Appliances Community
  • Understanding the broader ecosystem that they are in and their role in that ecosystem
  • Developing solutions within the constraints of the evolving environment
  • Understanding whose needs they're trying to address and what those needs are
  • Understanding who pays and how much they're willing to pay for a solution
the broadband home initiative
The “Broadband Home” Initiative
  • Formed to “speed the reality of the Broadband Home”
    • Rapid and competitive deployment of broadband to and within the home will enable the creation of new products, services, content and applications.
    • The "fat pipes”, home infrastructure, client devices and content must work together seamlessly to create compelling value for consumers.
  • Monthly newsletter: Report on the Broadband Home
    • Subscribers in more than 90 countries
    • Free to qualified subscribers
  • Web site:
    • Report subscriptions and back issues
    • Other resources and links
  • Conferences
    • Partnership with
    • Five held, most recently early October 2001
    • Community of more than 600 people, from 25 countries
    • Spanned all sectors of the industry ecosystem

For More Information:

System Dynamics Inc.

18 Beaver Ridge Road, Morris Plains, NJ 07950-1901

(973) 644-4739 Fax (973) 538-6003

dave @

sandy @