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1.
Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification defines interface standards for cable modems and supporting equipment.

Other devices that recognize and support the DOCSIS standard include HDTV's and STB's

DOCSIS specifies downstream traffic transfer rates between 27 and 36 Mbps over a radio frequency (RF) path in the 50 MHz to 750+ MHz range, and upstream traffic tranfer rates between 320 Kbps and 10 Mbps over a RF path between 5 and 42 MHz. But, because data over cable travels on a shared loop, individuals will see tranfer rates drop as more users gain access.
DOCSIS is the standards used by these companies:

NTL
Telewest
WightCable
by Ben Atherton May 17, 2006