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Fiber is being deployed everywhere and is the future-proof solution on everyone’s mind. Large public investments are being driven by initiatives like the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) and the European Electronics Communications Code (EECC), and private equity investments. The shared goal remains access to fiber and gigabit services.
Yet, actual implementations of fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) in rural areas and dense urban locations prove difficult. Taking fiber to rural communities costs a tremendous amount for little return in terms of average revenue per user. Urban areas suffer from physical obstacles such as roadways, rivers, or railroads, adding cost to an already expensive proposition. In addition, labor shortages and supply chain issues have led to a market ripe with demand but short on supply.
Can I Use Fixed Wireless for Gigabit Services? It may not be ideal.
Fixed wireless solutions have long been the staple for rural broadband, but bandwidth has been limited. Unlicensed 60GHz millimeter wave (mmWave) fixed wireless offers multi-gigabit backhaul and access and has now emerged as the ideal complement to extending fiber-like gigabit service. However, 60GHz technology has challenges, including limited range, required line-of-sight between nodes, and atmospheric conditions like O2 absorption.
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This is the first in a two-part series of articles exploring XGS-PON vs. Active Ethernet. In this article, we will explore why operators must seriously consider ceasing the use of Active Ethernet in their new fiber deployments. The second article will discuss innovative solutions that will enable operators to leverage XGS-PON with any existing Active Ethernet network deployments, thus providing substantial power, space, and equipment cost savings.
In prior blogs, we’ve explained what Combo PON is and discussed why deploying XGS-PON using Combo PON technology is better for a fiber network operator. Most fiber network operators now recognize its most basic benefit as a technology that empowers operators to enable both Gigabit Passive Optical Network (GPON) and Ten-Gigabit Symmetric Passive Optical Network (XGS-PON) on the same Optical Distribution Network (ODN) over a single, common OLT port. In this blog, I will focus on the power of PON coexistence using Combo PON and how it enables operators to extend the lifespan of their fiber infrastructure, specifically looking at when GPON can be expected to have fulfilled its useful life.
Since ADTRAN pioneered XGS-PON, there has been an ongoing industry debate regarding when and where a FTTH network operator should employ fiber broadband services using GPON versus XGS-PON standards. The availability of Combo PON capabilities built into second-generation XGS-PON solutions concludes the debate, as an operator can now leverage both FTTH standards without sacrificing in terms of cost or capability.
As first-generation XGS-PON solution costs have fallen over the last couple of years, XGS-PON electronics have leveled off at about 20 to 30 percent more that 15-year-old GPON electronics.
OK. You aren’t quite sure about the choice between Gigabit Passive Optical Network (GPON) and Ten Gigabit Symmetric Passive Optical Network (XGS-PON) to power your optical distribution network (ODN).
Let’s face it. The difference in the cost for a GPON based Optical Networking Unit (ONU) and an XGS-PON based ONU can be large enough, especially that when scaled to 100,000 subscribers or more, to tilt you to favor deploying your access network with GPON.
Many operators, though, look beyond the 20-30% increased cost of XGS-PON electronics over GPON and compare the overall cost to connect a FTTH subscriber. With the ONU making up a small portion of the overall connection cost, the cost adder for using XGS-PON over GPON ranges most of the time between 2 and 3%. So, is the extra cost delta justifiable?
In case you missed it, NBN Co announced that it has become the first Australian commercial network operator to join the Silicon Valley-based Open Networking Foundation (ONF). Why does this matter? According to NBN, this important investment “puts its vendors on notice that it is keen to explore the cost savings of open source network technologies.” As more operators around the world adopt this philosophical and business mindset, open ecosystems are sure to be the future of global networking.
As a valued strategic partner of NBN Co, ADTRAN welcomes the decision to join us in the ONF, which is focused on delivering open, disaggregated architectures and disrupting the status quo in the access network. This open architecture approach enables service providers to have the freedom to choose a variety of elements and control the introduction and rollout of new customer applications and broadband technologies, which helps eliminate costs and improve efficiencies.
FTTH subscriber connection costs and capabilities have evolved considerably in the last 15 years. Fiber installation techniques such as micro trenching and public-private partnerships leveraging existing right of ways and improved regulatory policies have all helped to reduce FTTH construction costs. Innovations in fiber optics and improvements in fiber connection and distribution methods have reduced the cost to connect an FTTH subscriber from several thousands of dollars per home to as low as a few hundred dollars today. PON technology innovation, Moore’s Law, and economies of scale have greatly increased capabilities while at the same time reducing the cost of an FTTH connection. The days of $500 ONTs and optics connected to expensive two-port OLTs have given way to $50 ONTs and high-density 16-port OLTs. Fiber access nodes have evolved from supporting dozens of 30Mbps residential services to supporting thousands of 100Mbps and Gigabit residential and business services – all on a single access node. It should be noted that this decade worth of increased FTTH service differentiation or utility has all occurred using
With that fascinating question, Jeremy Harris, ADTRAN Director of Subscriber Solutions and Experience, kicked off an insightful Light Reading radio show on "Virtualizing the Subscriber Experience."
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Historic $2 Billion CAF II Auction Will Provide Broadband Expansion Funding
The FCC is in the middle of planning a historic broadband funding opportunity. This initiative will provide as much as $2 billion in funding for broadband carriers who elect to bring broadband services to unserved and underserved areas of the country. Hailing myself from rural Kentucky, I am especially eager to see the benefits realized from these communities being broadband-enabled, just like those hailing from other densely populated communities. "Closing the digital divide is my number one priority, and through this innovative Connect America Fund auction, we are poised to take the next big step in reaching that goal," said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai in a press release announcing the auction.
History has shown how potential becomes artificially restricted with the presence of imbalance. The world we live in is forever evolving, with the old being replaced by the new.
Production and distribution models are being flipped on their heads, while the marriage of creation and consumption is being blown apart. The access networks that underpin much of this change will themselves be permanently altered by it. The good news is next generation platforms have the potential to capitalize on this new reality and shift the balance back in favor of their owners.
Symmetry: The Dominant Design in Evolution
Before we detail how symmetry can disrupt the telco industry, let’s take a closer look at its beginnings and how it’s disrupting other industries.
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