Cable to take on FTTH with 4.5Gbps breakthrough

The need for expensive fibre-to-the-home technology could well be staved off with the news that HFC (Hybrid fibre-coaxial) networks could be pushed to deliver multi-gigabit speeds. Cable equipment supplier Arris said at that the NCTA 2011 show in Chicago on June 14-16 it would demonstrate data transfers of up to 4.5Gbps running over an upgraded DOCSIS network.

The current DOCSIS 3.0 standard underpins cable networks used by companies such as Comcast in the US and Virgin Media in the UK. The latter currently offers a 100Mbps downstream service and is running 200Mbps trials.

The Arris DOCSIS upgrades then are clearly an order of magnitude faster and the company said that these will be achieved by bonding 128 DOSCSIS channels into a single fibre Node using an Arris C4 CMTS configured with 32 Downstream Cable Access Modules (32D CAMs).

The ante has also been upped on upstream bandwidth, with the planned demo taking it to 575Mbps, transmitted over 24 bonded channels.

Arris said that that the record breaking speeds will be required for large scale video IP systems and would help to protect cable companies’ investment in their HFC (Hybrid fibre-coaxial) networks.

Cable modem connections account for just over 53 per cent of all end user connections in the USA and 20 per cent in the UK, according to Informa WBIS subscriptions.

A recent report by Ovum said that fibre-to-the-home connections were on the up worldwide at the expense of DSL connections.

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One comment

  1. Avatar William Gacquer 15/06/2011 @ 10:10 am

    Counting a common Shannon limit at 5 bit per second and per Hertz, we are reaching the cable limits at these 4,5Gbps under 1GHz. This is a very good step from Arris but It will never compete against fiber whose limit is far above 5Gbps. A simple rule of three gives us approximately a maximum of 300 000 more bandwidth available in a standard fiber, which means roughly 1500 Tbps.

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