When looking at today’s broadband perspectives in the European market the battle on applicable technologies will go on and on, do we need to upgrade or overbuild the current HFC with fiber?
It will always depend on the goals which need to be achieved. If you just need to have fiber to all homes as a main reason and are able to overbuild your complete network with fiber, then go for it!
At the end the only important topic is to realize optimum customer experience and satisfaction and yes customers will be extremely happy having fiber to their home, so case closed! Investing without generating additional RPU or avoid churn, is useless..
As a business insider some remarks: Building a brand-new fiber network on top of(replacing) your existing HFC network will probably be done today by using XGS-PON from a speed and bandwidth availability perspective, it means theoretically 10 gigabit(Gig) down and upstream minus the overhead a nice 8 Gig will remain available for customer usage. Again, getting a bit less financial reserves and probably a though ROI/Business case but we achieved getting fiber to the customers home with 8 Gig so done you could say.
Understanding that bringing fiber to every home is highly attractive to every customer does that mean that every user will consume the full 8 Gig operator offer? Probably not. From a statistical point of view an extremely small user group is willing to pay for 8 Gig services therefore has the availability to the world wide web services using these 8 Gig speeds. EU targets getting 1 Gig to every home by 2025 are covered today by existing p2p and p2mp technologies in fiber as well as traditional HFC networks.
Is the EU target getting to “sandbag” the market? Or is it a bit of an old-fashioned statement?
Well, we don’t know, do we?
What we know:
Today’s HFC and FTTX networks are fully 1 Gig enabled so considering EU targets we are done today.
But did you know you can use your Hirschmann product enabled access network up till 8 Gig on a very short notice without digging and replacing costly central and network equipment? I guess you did not.
With the current product range of HFC nodes and amplifiers who are all enabled using flexible up/downstream frequency split between 65/85 and 205/254MHz and full usable load of 5 – 204 and 254 – 1218 MHz we have enabled all applicable networks as full load DOCSIS 3.1 HFC networks.
Our RFoG products range are designed and equipped with exactly the same frequency use and usable load enabling the same full usage of DOCSIS 3.1 on FTTH(x) RFoG Access networks.
DOCSIS 4.0 is coming up enabling even more bandwidth using the full functionality of DOCSIS 4.0 does mean that the Access and in home network needs to be upgraded to have the necessary up and and downstream spectrum of 5 – 684 and 108 – 1794MHz practical replacing all active and passive components in the complete network mean reason for the complete overhaul is that you never know where and when the first couple of early adapters are going to join, so full overbuild for a limited group of high end customers. An inescapable fact is that DOCSIS 4.0 is really able to have 10 Gig throughput compared to the roughly 8 Gig the XGS-PON is able to. I guess it’s just a matter of time when Marketing contests between the HFC and FTTH operators will start throwing offers based on this so beware.
Is fiber a no go or not a relevant technology, ofcourse it is! Fiber (to the home) will happen and is an absolute sure fact. But what are we going to do until we have reached 100% fiber to the home deployment?
Let’s assume you are already a Hirschmann product user in the 1218 and/or RFoG series. New deployed DOCSIS 4.0 modems as well as renewed DOCSIS 3.1 modems are made available with the latest Broadcom and MaxLinear chipsets enabling to use 4 OFDM downstream blocks. By using this modem(chipset) the applicable downstream speeds will be 8 Gbps and the Upstream stays 1.7 Gbps by using existing CMTS, up and downstream split 204/258 all based on the current passive and active components as deployed today in DOCSIS 3.1 enabled Access and in home Networks. This functionality is called Boosted 3.1 or DOCSIS3.1 + (plus)
There getting 8 Gig to the home in existing Hirschmann HFC and RFoG network does not require any upgrade or replacement of active and passive components as build in your current DOCSIS 3.1 enabled network. How cool is that! So no big investments needed to offer 8 Gig to the customer, that will create a bridge towards a full overbuild network .
Doing so Full IP based services (transport) is then accessible and a logical step towards the future and migrate to Full IP networks.
Our newest Product, the DMN1218 (a Digital mini node based on Remote PHY DOCSIS 3.1. technology) is a perfect example being a piece of the puzzle to move forward. Partnering with Harmonic enabling us to use DOSCIS 3.1 including 4 OFDM blocks so we have 8 Gig available for the customer but also enable XGS-PON FTTH connections via the same DMN1218. This enables another step that is integrating new FTTH customers within the existing DOCSIS 3.1 network and within the same geographical area without having to overbuild the complete core and access network.
So, we’re not just getting ready for the future, we’re actively working on it as we speak. We’ve already laid the groundwork for a functional and accessible future. Now you know!