One Step Closer to "Electric Broadband"
Besides the obvious advantages of leveraging power outlets for online access, Matshushita's system delivers speeds up to 170 megabits per second -- faster than conventional Ethernet. The system could also bring us closer to the pervasive computing environment, in which electrical devices of all sorts could be networked.
UPDATE: Several alert readers have noted the irony that Japan has for now banned Internet access through electrical lines (or power line communication [PLC]), citing interference with radio frequencies in the 2-30 MHz range.
Sources: USA Today, Smart Mobs