(Einquirer) - Boffins Based in Wales' Bangor University claim to have discovered a means whereby data can be downloaded over 100 times faster than today's typical broadband speeds.
According the university's Dr Jianming Tang, "Importantly, it works with the existing fibre optic technology we have, so there is no need to rip out the cabling which runs the country's telecommunications network."
The discovery comes as a result of research into remote working for the EU-funded Alpha project. In certain parts of Wales almost a quarter (23 per cent) of people don't even have access to broadband.
To give an idea of the technology's speed, Bangor is claiming that it would be possible to download up to 15 typical Hollywood films in just one minute. But Dr Tang says it will offer a host of other possibilities in such fields as tele-medicine.
The research team also reckons that its technology may cut as much as 75 per cent off the cost of supplying broadband to consumers. Curiously, the same team hasn't been able to estimate how much the necessary black box would cost the consumer.
Critics of the system say that current communications aren't always asymmetric. That is, upload speeds are becoming just as important as download speeds.
A good example of a hugely asymmetric comms network was the UK's Prestel system. That worked well with certain industries such as travel and insurance but overall wasn't a massive success.
Here's an interesting piece of history for you. The Science Department of the university remained in an old coaching inn called the Penrhyn Arms until 1926.