& cplSiteName &

RBOCs Cast Wide GPON Net

Light Reading
News Analysis
Light Reading
6/14/2005
50%
50%

More details are coming forth from the request for information (RFI) for gigabit passive optical networks (GPONs) that was sent to industry equipment suppliers by three RBOCs on April 29 (see Sources: RBOCs Are Gawking at GPON). And, though there is indeed a "fishing expedition" going on, the RBOCs are serious about getting their access networks up to gigabit speeds and delivering a different consumer experience than the cable companies.

While no formal request for proposal (RFP) has hit the streets yet, the three largest U.S. RBOCs -- BellSouth Corp. (NYSE: BLS), SBC Communications Inc. (NYSE: SBC), and Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) -- have asked for a wide range of data from suppliers in order to weigh how to use GPON in the new broadband buildouts.

The main focus of the RFI is on GPON systems, but there is definitely an interest in comparing BPON (broadband PON) and EPON (Ethernet PON) to GPON to see which method of connectivity costs less, is most widely available, and is easiest to deploy, sources familiar with the RFI say.

This new information is significant because it illustrates that, while the RBOCs have a keen interest in faster fiber-based access networks, they're still a ways away from nailing down the specifics about how much GPON they'll use and where they'll use it.

"We're going to have a significant amount of BPON out there before we do any GPON," says Verizon spokesman Mark Marchand.

Verizon, by the way, won't comment directly on the RFI's requirements. Neither will SBC, but the carrier remains bullish on GPON's future prospects.

"GPON is something we're interested in… and we're looking at it in our labs," says SBC spokesman Wes Warnock.

For BPON, the RFI asks vendors to say how much it would cost them to provide and support 200,000 ONTs (optical network terminals) annually and 1 million ONTs annually at four different bandwidth configurations.

Table 1: RBOC's ONT Cost Requests

BPON Downlink BPON Uplink
622 Mbit/s 155 Mbit/s
622 Mbit/s 622 Mbit/s
1.2 Gbit/s 155 Mbit/s
1.2 Gbit/s 622 Mbit/s


For GPON, the RFI again asks for pricing for 200,000 ONTs and 1 million ONTs annually, but this time at seven different bandwidth configurations.

Table 2: RBOC's Requested GPON ONT Costs
GPON Downlink GPON Uplink
1.2 Gbit/s 155 Mbit/s
1.2 Gbit/s 622 Mbit/s
1.2 Gbit/s 1.2 Gbit/s
2.4 Gbit/s 155 Mbit/s
2.4 Gbit/s 622 Mbit/s
2.4 Gbit/s 1.2 Gbit/s
2.4 Gbit/s 2.4 Gbit/s


For EPON, the RFI asks for pricing for 200,000 ONTs and 1 million ONTs annually at 1.2 Gbit/s symmetrical.

There are several ONT-specific questions as well, sources say, including one asking the cost of a three-port Ethernet switch in the ONT. There is also a question asking vendors to assess the costs of supporting ONT Ethernet connection with 35-, 50-, and 100-Mbit/s throughputs.

A final item of intrigue is the description of a different video network architecture than had been discussed two years earlier in the joint FTTP RFP. One section of the GPON RFI, sources say, talks about a satellite direct-to-home (DTH) relay service, where a satellite dish or an array of broadcast antennas would be located at each central office where optical line terminals (OLTs) are hosted.

That's a huge deal, too, because it shows RBOCs are considering a way of simplifying their previously described video distribution networks. Rather than using master headends and regional headends -- and all the high-speed connections between those locations -- the RBOCs appear to be exploring a way to take video direct from satellite to local distribution points, giving them a chance to further differentiate themselves from cable networks.

The fact that the RBOCs have cast such a wide net has led a few Light Reading sources to say that the phone companies are on a fishing expedition. However it's characterized, any written expression that the largest phone companies in North America aren't going to stop at BPON is a huge boon to PON vendors of all sorts.

"If a vendor is delivering BPON now and doesn't have GPON in their plans or on their roadmap, then they're so dumb they shouldn't be in the market," says Kermit Ross, principal analyst at Millennium Marketing.

The vendors this RFI will impact include fiber access vendors such as Alcatel (NYSE: ALA; Paris: CGEP:PA), Motorola Inc. (NYSE: MOT), Tellabs Inc. (Nasdaq: TLAB; Frankfurt: BTLA), Optical Solutions Inc., and Hitachi Telecom (USA) Inc. But it also includes broadband loop carrier vendors such as Calix Networks Inc., Entrisphere Inc., Occam Networks Inc. (OTC: OCCM), and Ciena Corp. (Nasdaq: CIEN) -- and, of course, ONT makers like Siemens AG (NYSE: SI; Frankfurt: SIE).

"The field is a fairly big one," Ross says, "but it's also fairly full."

— Phil Harvey, News Editor, Light Reading

(0)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Educational Resources
sponsor supplied content
Educational Resources Archive
From The Founder
Cisco's Conrad Clemson, recently promoted to head up the company's Service Provider Apps & Platforms developments, talks to Light Reading's Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about how he's bringing cloud video, mobile and virtualization together to empower network operators.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Custom TV
What Is MACOM's Role in Enabling the Upgrade From 100G to 400G Optical Connectivity?

3|30|17   |     |   (0) comments


MACOM's Vivek Rajgarhia, vice president and GM of Lightwave Networking Components, discusses MACOM's complete solution of innovative technologies and products that have achieved success in the PON access market, as well as in Long Haul, Metro and DCI networks with 100G to 400G technology.
LRTV Custom TV
Affirmed Networks Is Setting Up New Standards for IoT

3|30|17   |     |   (0) comments


As a market leader helping mobile operators embrace the benefits of virtualized networks, Affirmed Networks is seeing significant interest by service providers worldwide to deploy NFV-based networks as the foundation for IoT service delivery. This video interview between Heavy Reading analyst Steve Bell and Angela Whiteford, Affirmed Networks' vice president of ...
LRTV Documentaries
MLBAM: Live Sports Streaming Will Be Big

3|30|17   |     |   (0) comments


MLB Advanced Media EVP and CTO Joe Inzerillo explains why live sports streaming will take off over the next few years despite major technical challenges.
LRTV Custom TV
Xilinx Disruptive Technology Breakthrough for 5G Wireless

3|30|17   |     |   (0) comments


Xilinx has integrated multi-giga-sample RF data converters into its 16nm MPSoCs devices for the industry's first All Programmable RFSoC, eliminating the need for discrete ADCs and DACs.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Turkcell Challenges Turkey's Current TV Market

3|29|17   |     |   (0) comments


Baris Zavaroglu, TV and rntertainment business director of Turkcell, explains Turkcell's strategy in elevating the small and uncertain TV market in Turkey.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Altibox’s Infrastructure Synergy Strategy Reduces Deployment Costs

3|29|17   |     |   (0) comments


Thomas Skjelbred, CEO of Altibox, on how to improve efficiency and reduce deployment coast through infrastructure synergy in Norway.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Ismail Butun on the Changing Role of Turkcell

3|29|17   |     |   (0) comments


Ismail Butun, chief marketing officer of Turkcell, explains the importance of video and mobile services for the future of the company.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
IDC's Emir Halilovic on Trends of Cloudification

3|29|17   |     |   (0) comments


Emir Halilovic of IDC CEMA discusses the future and direction of cloudification. Also, the all-cloud approach taken by Huawei and others in the industry.
LRTV Custom TV
How Intel Is Powering the 5G Era

3|29|17   |     |   (0) comments


Light Reading tours a series of 5G "super demos" so see how Intel envisions the 5G-connected future. We take a look at a prototype connected BMW, a light pole with environmental sensors that provides 5G wireless to a smart home and a fully untethered virtual reality experience.
LRTV Custom TV
Source Photonics CEO Doug Wright Talks About the Future of Source Photonics

3|29|17   |     |   (0) comments


Source Photonics' CEO, Doug Wright, talks to Light Reading about how the company is continuously investing in its operations to meet not only its customers' current technology demands but also to deliver their next-generation technology needs.
LRTV Custom TV
Live Demo: DevOps in Service Chains & 5G Network Slices PoC

3|29|17   |     |   (0) comments


Executives from PoC collaborating companies – Patrick Waldemar, VP and Head of Technology at Telenor Research, John Healy, VP of the Datacenter Network Solutions Group at Intel, Vincent Spinelli, SVP of Global Sales and Marketing at RIFT.io, Mats Eriksson, CEO and co-founder of Arctos Labs, and Mats Nordlund, CEO and co-founder of Netrounds – review ...
LRTV Documentaries
The Year of Fat & Skinny Bundles

3|29|17   |   21:06   |   (0) comments


In this fireside chat, Roku's Andrew Ferrone predicts that 2017 will be the year of multichannel OTT video bundles and spells out other trends in the OTT and pay-TV markets.
Upcoming Live Events
May 15-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
May 15, 2017, Austin Convention Center - Austin, TX
June 6, 2017, The Joule Hotel, Dallas, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
Unlocking China's $194B Telecom Market
Robert Clark, 3/27/2017
Ericsson Tightens Focus, Warns of $1.7B Q1 Hit
Iain Morris, News Editor, 3/28/2017
WiCipedia: Supergirls, No More Excuses & Media Monitoring
Eryn Leavens, Special Features & Copy Editor, 3/24/2017
Welcome to the Wild West of Privacy
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 3/24/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
TEOCO Founder and CEO Atul Jain talks to Light Reading Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the challenges around cost control and service monetization in the mobile and IoT sectors.
At MWC 2017, Qualcomm's CTO Matt Grob talks to Light Reading's CEO and Founder Steve Saunders about the progress being made in the development of the technologies and standards that will underpin 5G.
Animals with Phones
Working From Home Doesn't Work for Everyone Click Here
You shouldn't nap on your keyboard, for instance.
Live Digital Audio

Playing it safe can only get you so far. Sometimes the biggest bets have the biggest payouts, and that is true in your career as well. For this radio show, Caroline Chan, general manager of the 5G Infrastructure Division of the Network Platform Group at Intel, will share her own personal story of how she successfully took big bets to build a successful career, as well as offer advice on how you can do the same. We’ll cover everything from how to overcome fear and manage risk, how to be prepared for where technology is going in the future and how to structure your career in a way to ensure you keep progressing. Chan, a seasoned telecom veteran and effective risk taker herself, will also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air.