Stelia Blog

A blog post by Stelia’s CEO & Founder, Tobias Hooton

Terms like “high-capacity” and “low-latency” are frequently used without proper context, becoming part of the standard marketing lexicon, much like the term “cloud.” Light has a finite speed, and all major optical or transmission network vendors acknowledge this limitation. Ethernet presents its own challenges, while dark fibre is complex, costly, and lacks redundancy. 

Every ISP or carrier claims to offer “high-capacity, low-latency” services, but this practice needs to be re-evaluated by providers and scrutinized by the market. 

The definition of high-capacity is context-dependent, and providers should align their offerings accordingly. 100G and 400G refer to port speeds, not service levels, and do not inherently signify high capacity. Redundancy must also be considered. 

Without context, the terms “high-capacity” and “low-latency” are meaningless. A reliable 10Mbps low-latency service is preferable to an unstable 1Gbps consumer cable broadband connection. 

Latency is no longer the ultimate priority it once was, as modern applications have become more tolerant. OTT platforms running on TCP leverage encapsulation using UDP streams or novel protocols for encoding and recoding, enhancing efficiency. In media, this is achieved through time-sync delay, synchronizing audio and video with real-time flags. 

Security and encryption can adversely impact low-latency performance, necessitating a complete reassessment of encryption at higher bandwidths. The Nvidia BlueField 3 DPU running at 800G today will likely benefit from an embedded application to overcome this challenge. 

Stelia has ceased discussing capacity in isolation. We define “high-capacity, low-latency” within the context of our AI Availability Zones, where the maximum RTT is 0.1ms, and a minimum of 120Tbps of redundant on-platform interconnectivity exists between any two locations. By 2025, we aim to achieve a standard of 1Pbps. 

With a projected network aggregate surpassing 100Pbps by 2025, we are confident in our position as the world’s most capable data mobility platform, and we are only at the beginning of our journey. 

Tobias Hooton

CEO & Founder


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