Light Reading

Harmonic Goes All-Out for CCAP

Jeff Baumgartner
LR Cable News Analysis
Jeff Baumgartner
9/5/2012
50%
50%

When it comes to developing products for cable's next-gen access platform, Harmonic Inc. (Nasdaq: HLIT) isn't messing around.

Harmonic, known for its edge QAM expertise, has been quietly adding Docsis know-how as it prepares to launch a full CCAP chassis, Light Reading Cable has learned.

That strategy will put Harmonic on a collision course with some of the industry's leading cable modem termination system (CMTS) vendors, including Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO), Arris Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ARRS) and Motorola Mobility.

Harmonic President and CEO Patrick Harshman hinted at the product strategy during the company's second-quarter earnings call in July, noting that Harmonic is making a "substantial investment" in its CCAP initiative. "We have scaled up our development team, adding a number of skilled Docsis experts, and have made amazing development progress," he added.

Harmonic hasn't said much about those Docsis-related hires, but an industry source says Harmonic has added some CMTS firepower by bringing on some engineers who were formerly at Terayon Communication Systems, a cable modem and CMTS vendor that's now part of Motorola. The bigger focus on CCAP also comes as Harmonic executed a strategic reorganization that put company veteran Nimrod Ben-Natan in charge of the company's new Edge and Access business unit.

So, what's Harmonic up to? It's not revealing all the details yet, but Harmonic VP of Cable Solutions Gil Katz confirms that the company will introduce a "CCAP-compliant" product at next month's Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE) Cable Tec-Expo 2012 in Orlando, and will be ready to take orders for it soon after the event.

That will expand the number of known full CCAP players to five, as Cisco, Arris, Motorola and Casa Systems Inc. have all announced plans to develop products for the power- and space-saving access platform, which combines edge QAM and CMTS functions in one box. The port densities envisioned for CCAP will put cable on an all-IP convergence path as more and more video traffic becomes unicast as MSOs adopt services such as the network DVR. (See Casa Puts Heat on Cisco, Arris & Motorola .)

Like other CCAP vendors, Harmonic won't have every part of the spec covered at the get-go, but intends to add features and components as cable operators require them. But Katz adds that Harmonic is also working on a complementary CCAP product that will introduce a new class of HFC transmitter and a broader optical transmission system that will help operators use the fiber portion of their HFC networks more efficiently. More on that is expected to come out before the SCTE event.

A race for number 3?
According to Infonetics Research Inc. , Harmonic still leads the edge QAM market. But its move into the Docsis realm will put it in a bigger fight with the cable industry's top three top CMTS vendors -- Cisco, Arris and Motorola -- as MSOs begin to test and deploy CCAP in the coming months and years. (See Cisco Keeps Stranglehold of CMTS Market and Comcast Issues CCAP RFP .)

And even if Harmonic can develop a CCAP product that differentiates itself from the field, it may have trouble loosening the grip of the main CMTS incumbents, despite ongoing questions about the fate of Motorola's cable business. (See Google Taps Barclays to Shop Motorola Home .)

"Two to three players in the full CCAP space is about all the market can bear," Infonetics analyst Jeff Heynen told Light Reading Cable back in May. (See CCAP Market Is Cisco's & Arris's to Lose .)

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable



(3)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Jeff Baumgartner
50%
50%
Jeff Baumgartner,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:22:00 PM
re: Harmonic Goes All-Out for CCAP


There's also a market developing for non-routing CCAPs that are akin to giant downstream only edge QAMs, with CommScope (via its LiquidXstream acquisition) notably in that group, which is also expected to include the other CCAP vendors, so there will be a few vendors and product types emerging from this market.  Expect to hear more about that and what else is new on the CCAP front during this Webinar on Monday Sept. 10. JB

craigleddy
50%
50%
craigleddy,
User Rank: Blogger
12/5/2012 | 5:22:00 PM
re: Harmonic Goes All-Out for CCAP


For awhile it's seemed like CCAP has been plodding along, looking like a technology in search of a marketplace. Comcast has been leading the CCAP charge and Time Warner Cable has been interested, both of which provide an initial customer base for suppliers, but what about other MSOs?


Some suppliers appear to favor their high-density edge QAM devices, but perhaps there's a hybrid that can meet the goals of CCAP. It'll be interesting to see what Harmonic comes out with.    

Jeff Baumgartner
50%
50%
Jeff Baumgartner,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:21:59 PM
re: Harmonic Goes All-Out for CCAP


Probably better defined as an emerging market since I don't think anyone's really making any money on ccaps yet. Will be interesting to see how this market develops and replaces or complements the existing edge QAM/CMTS architecture.  Looking like these full integrated CCAPs will be good in big markets, allowing msos to redeploy cmts and eqam gear into smaller markets, and perhaps use these non-routing ccaps in mid-size/small markets as well.  Hoping to get a good update on that Webinar next week. JB


 

Flash Poll
From The Founder
Ericsson's Hyperscale Datacenter System (HDS) 8000, featuring Intel's Rack Scale Architecture, caused a stir when it was announced at MWC 2015. For more on this revolutionary product, join me on Thursday, April 30 at 12:00 p.m. EST for a Super Webinar event, A New Hardware Paradigm for the Telco Data Center.
LRTV Documentaries
CableLabs' Clarke Updates Cable Virtualization

4|23|15   |   05:41   |   (1) comment


Former BT exec now leading CableLabs' NFV and SDN efforts explains key role of open source and updates efforts to virtualize the home network.
LRTV Interviews
Ericsson's CTO Talks Transformation: Pt. II

4|23|15   |   08:19   |   (1) comment


In the second installment of an in-depth two-part interview, Ericsson's CTO Ulf Ewaldsson talks to Light Reading CEO and founder Steve Saunders about cultural change, network slicing and technology advances.
LRTV Interviews
Ericsson's CTO Talks Transformation: Pt. I

4|23|15   |   09:27   |   (3) comments


In the first installment of an in-depth two-part interview, Ericsson's CTO Ulf Ewaldsson talks to Light Reading CEO and founder Steve Saunders about the incredible transformation underway in the communications networking industry.
LRTV Documentaries
LTE Paves the Way for the 5G Revolution

4|20|15   |   4:20   |   (0) comments


Håkan Andersson, head of 5G product strategy of the Radio Business Unit at Ericsson, discusses the role of LTE, the US and other industry verticals in building a true 5G ecosystem.
LRTV Documentaries
The 3GPP's Road to 5G Standardization

4|17|15   |   4:43   |   (0) comments


Satoshi Nagata, chairman of the 3GPP's TSG-RAN group and a manager at NTT Docomo, explains the standardization process for 5G, as well as the biggest challenges and opportunities.
LRTV Documentaries
AlcaLu CTO Makes the Case for a New 5G Air Interface

4|16|15   |   3:54   |   (0) comments


Michael Peeters, CTO of wireless at Alcatel-Lucent, explains why 5G will require a new air interface to meet its diverse performance targets.
LRTV Documentaries
AlcaLu + Nokia: The New Uber-Vendor

4|15|15   |   2:42   |   (4) comments


Heavy Reading Senior Analyst Gabriel Brown discusses the technological and competitive opportunities and challenges if a merger between Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia comes to pass.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Data Center Power Play

4|15|15   |   6:22   |   (0) comments


Huawei has developed industry-leading energy efficiency capabilities for its indoor and outdoor data center solutions, explains Dr. Fang Liangzhou, vice president of Huawei's Network Energy product Line.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei’s Routers, Switches Get the Green Mark

4|15|15   |   2:02   |   (0) comments


TUV Rheinland's Frank Dudley explains how Huawei's routers and switches have been successfully tested by energy efficiency experts and have gained Green Mark Certification.
LRTV Documentaries
A Finn, a Frenchman & a Guy From New Jersey Walk Into a Merger...

4|15|15   |   3:17   |   (0) comments


Stop us if you've heard this one before... Light Reading CEO Founder & CEO Steve Saunders weighs in on the technical and cultural implications of a Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent merger.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Accounting for Better Solutions

4|10|15   |   02:31   |   (1) comment


Murad Yousuf, CTO at Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Finance (Dept. of Zakat & Income Tax), talks about the benefits of deploying router technology from Huawei.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
What's in Store for Huawei & DataCore?

4|10|15   |   05:44   |   (0) comments


At the CeBIT trade show in Hannover, Germany, George Teixeira, CEO of software-defined storage (SDS) specialist DataCore Software, explains why he has just signed a partnership agreement with Huawei Technologies.
Upcoming Live Events
May 6, 2015, Georgia World Congress, Atlanta, GA
May 12, 2015, Grand Hyatt, Denver, CO
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 8, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 10, 2015, Chicago, IL
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
October 6, 2015, Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
November 11-12, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
In its latest survey covering network operators' plans and strategies for ICT transformation, Heavy Reading asked telecom operators worldwide to identify the most important goals and objectives for their ICT transformation initiatives. Heavy Reading also asked operators about the importance of a "digital first" strategy, which enables customers to complete an interaction across different digital channels, such as web and mobile self-service and social media.
Hot Topics
Comcast Formally Ends Its Bid for TWC
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 4/24/2015
What if the Comcast Merger Fails?
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 4/20/2015
Google's WiFi-First Mobile Service 'Fi' Is Here
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/22/2015
Adtran Is Developing White Box GPON Tech
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 4/24/2015
Comcast Merger May Hinge on Hulu
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 4/22/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Many leading communications companies can claim to have undergone significant periods of reinvention during their histories, but none have been through more major ...
Data Center Interconnect, or DCI, is one of the hottest sectors in telecom currently. Since coming back to Light Reading last year, prodigal-son style, I've ...
Cats with Phones
Learning Curve Click Here
Pierre could never remember how to use Excel.
Latest Comment