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Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture

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Shamim Akhtar, Comcast's architect and senior director of network strategy, explains why the cable company is moving to a more distributed network architecture.
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Carol Wilson
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Carol Wilson,
User Rank: Blogger
4/7/2014 | 2:43:58 PM
Re: Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture
I don't think the distributed data approach would force locally distributed data into a centralized backbone - there's no reason that would happen. 

Comcast is working to make the most efficient use of its distribution networks and wherever its local point of distribution is, Netflix has to connect to that network to reach its customers. 
jabailo
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jabailo,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/7/2014 | 2:41:15 PM
Re: Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture
Yes, but suppose Netflix already has distributed data near the consumer because of the cloud.

Does Comcast then make it travel all the way up to a centralized backbone, and back down its pipes?

Or is this new topology desing to provide more local "on ramps" to data that is already distributed and replicated?

DHagar
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DHagar,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/7/2014 | 2:27:18 PM
Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture
@danielcawrey, that makes great sense! That is what provides a really competitive network.   And, as Carol points out, Comcast is in a great position to do that; particularly with their intelligence!
Carol Wilson
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Carol Wilson,
User Rank: Blogger
4/7/2014 | 1:53:19 PM
Re: Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture
Comcast is in a position to distribute data differently even from a CDN or other more localized access point, the key seems to be the intelligence to know where the most cost-effective place is for storing specific data and that seems to be what newer architectures will help them exploit.
danielcawrey
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danielcawrey,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/7/2014 | 1:09:41 PM
Re: Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture
Decentralization is key. For so long, cable providers have been pushing data from consolidated locations through fiber and then to copper. But why not spread things out? Why not implement content delivery networks like streaming video firms do?

This is what the all-IP network gives Comcast the ability to do, and it is something that is necessary for them to be able to compete in digital content areas like video streaming. 
DHagar
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DHagar,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/7/2014 | 12:46:11 PM
Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture
Good thoughts, jabailo!  Actually, it would make great sense for Netflix to do that; their unique capability to deliver what the customer wants would position them favorably.

True, Amazon is a host, but that does not preclude Netflix from developing its own networks.  Plus, Amazon is setting up more of a "utility" with their network, which is the channel - Netflix can take advantage of their customer relationships.
jabailo
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jabailo,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/6/2014 | 1:10:32 PM
Re: Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture
I wonder how much they'd reduce total traffic, just by putting a Netflix imager as close as they can to their subscribers.   Although I would think that Amazon Cloud, that hosts Netflix would already have been localizing those streamed videos.   
DHagar
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DHagar,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/4/2014 | 1:18:13 PM
Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture
Excellent perspective, from Shamim, on the  the advances in technology and architecture that is enabling new networking and virtualization models, with new economic advantages.

Excellent outline of issues, opportunities, and expanded architecture designs.  It points out the advancement of technology is such that the design now is becoming a key.
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