The demand for faster Internet connectivity is expanding at a staggering rate. Many industry analysts predict that Internet traffic will increase between 20 and 30 percent each year, and Cisco Visual Networking Index predicts that video traffic will increate to 80% of all IP traffic. Trends contributing to increased bandwidth demand include an increase in the number of connected devices per person and record growth in subscriptions to over-the-top video services, such as Netflix. In addition, the NCTA reports that the cable industry now has more broadband subscribers than video subscribers. With an ever-increasing bandwidth demand, 50 gigabit cities in the US and counting, and tremendous growth in the consumption of over the top video, many operators are looking for ways to reduce OpEx and build an all-fiber, flexible network that will satisfy the growing demand for many years to come.
Automate Service Delivery through APIs
Application Program Interfaces (APIs) provide an interface that can be used by a service provider’s back office systems to control network elements such as CMTSs, DSLAMs, and FTTH aggregation platforms. By selecting aggregation equipment that offers APIs such as REST, Netconf, and YANG, Cable MSOs, telcos, and other operators are able to automate provisioning processes, which reduces the headcount and time required to provision a new subscriber and eliminates problems with service delivery. Most importantly, automation in service delivery moves operators closer to software-defined networking (SDN) where end-users can choose from additional service offerings through an operator-provided portal without the need for a truck roll.
DWDM and NG-PON2 for Scalable Access and Transport Networks
Fiber optic cable has been a part of the service delivery network for decades. However, installing new fiber can be costly, especially in densely-populated areas where it is needed most. Technologies such as Dense Wave Division Multiplexing (DWDM) allow operators to layer multiple services on top of each other on the same fiber, which increases the capacity of the transport network. In addition, new fiber to the home (FTTH) technologies such as Next Generation Passive Optical Network Stage 2 (NG-PON2) provide scalability in the fiber access network by using Time and Wavelength Division Multiplexing (TWDM), allowing service providers to deploy a single 10-gigabit access network and add additional networks on other wavelengths as demand increases or to service businesses who desire point-to-point connectivity. By incorporating both DWDM and NG-PON2, operators can consolidate residential and business service delivery networks onto the same fiber without fear of degrading service level agreement (SLA) performance and reduce construction costs. The result is an agile, high-capacity, all-Ethernet service delivery network that will serve operators well for decades to come.
Modular, Upgradeable Access Platforms Eliminate Forklift
Upgrades At a time when capacity requirements on the access and transport networks are increasing faster than upgrades can be performed, many operators want to choose service delivery platforms that can be upgraded without a forklift upgrade as their network evolves. Platforms that are wholly based on a standard Ethernet switch fabric instead of proprietary protocols are aligned better with the technologies used in the rest of the network and are easier to upgrade going forward. Modular access platforms that implement technologies such as NG-PON2, GPON, xDSL, and packet optical transport on a card allow operators to upgrade their networks by purchasing a new card as opposed to a new chassis. In summary, MSOs, telcos, and other service providers are faced with the challenge of upgrading their networks to satisfy a growing bandwidth demand with an increasing amount of video traffic. For operators to satisfy the capacity requirements of the future, they will need to automate their service delivery processes, leverage their investment in their physical fiber plant with increased capacity, and invest in a service delivery platform that’s based on modular, Ethernet technology that offers the possibility of upgrading to newer access and transport standards without a forklift upgrade. With APIs to automate service delivery, DWDM in the transport network, and NG-PON2 in the access network, service provider networks will be more than capable of providing an excellent experience and additional video content to subscribers for years to come.