When the cable TV carrier-telco wars began years ago, pundits liked to compare the two sides by saying that when it came to networking, the cablecos played fast and dirty whereas the telcos were methodical and slow. But, in fact, the big cablecos have long worked together in an orchestrated way to advance their network strategies and networks. They’ve done that in large part through their R&D effort CableLabs (News - Alert). And they’ve discussed and demonstrated their work at events such as SCTE Cable Tec EXPO.
Well, SCTE Cable Tec EXPO is just around the corner once again. And at this year’s gathering, which will take place next month in Atlanta, Distributed Access Architectures, Fiber Deep, MSO access networks, and the new P2P Coherent Optics specifications out of CableLabs will be center stage. (Indeed, the Cable Tec EXPO says the DAA Pre-Conference Session has reached maximum seating capacity and is now closed.)
Distributed Access Architecture and Fiber Deep can serve to provide 1Gb and higher data rates to cable customers. DAA decentralizes and virtualizes headend and network functions. Deep fiber eliminates amplifiers and brings optical-to-electrical conversion closer to subscribers. That reduces the number of homes passed per node. And it moves headend functionality to the node for better performance. And it also allows MSOs to migrate to Remote PHY Devices.
Coherent optics serve to aggregate bandwidth, allowing for increased capacity of as much as 10 times what’s possible today on existing cable access plant. And the CableLabs’ specs relative to coherent optics allow for interoperability among vendors solutions at either end of a fiber link. That will allow cablecos to avoid vendor lock in and choose the best possible solution for the application at hand.
Edited by Maurice Nagle