AT&T Inc. is seeking to boost U-verse speeds with new customer trials that feature a bonded VDSL2 gateway from the former Motorola Home product portfolio (now part of Arris Group Inc.).
DSLReports broke the news, citing documentation from an inside source with orders for installers in Dayton, Ohio and Madison, Wisconsin to begin phasing in the NGV589 gateway hardware. The pair-bonded gateway is capable of speeds of up to 45 Mbit/s downstream, much faster than what U-verse can offer now.
With its reliance on DSL technology and copper pipes, U-verse is never going to match the top speeds of competitive cable broadband services and Verizon Communications Inc.'s FiOS, which now clock in at well over 100 Mbit/s. But AT&T is making the most of the copper infrastructure that it has. By bonding two VDSL2 lines together, AT&T can double its capacity, increasing the bandwidth available to a given subscriber group. That extra capacity equates to service that's twice as fast or to bandwidth delivery that reaches twice as far.
As a side note to the U-verse trials, the VDSL2 gateway represents an interesting product group for the new, bulked-up Arris. Motorola acquired DSL-based customer premises equipment (CPE) when it bought Netopia in 2007. DSL technology, however, is hardly central to Arris's cable-dominated product portfolio. No doubt Arris will continue to support existing DSL hardware, but whether there is any future development in the works remains to be seen. (See Moto Closes on Netopia.)
On the other hand, the Netopia acquisition was also responsible for bringing in Motorola's network management software. That technology now merges quite well with Arris's existing service assurance products. (See Arris Shows Off New Mojo.)
— Mari Silbey, Special to Light Reading Cable