Sponsored By

Hitron Snags 2 MSOs for New D3.0 ModemHitron Snags 2 MSOs for New D3.0 Modem

Equipment maker signs up Suddenlink & GCI for its new 'gigabit cable modem,' which bonds 32 channels to support downstream speed bursts as high as 1.2 Gbit/s.

Alan Breznick

August 3, 2015

2 Min Read
Hitron Snags 2 MSOs for New D3.0 Modem

Apparently beating other cable equipment suppliers to the punch, Hitron Technologies claims that it has become the first equipment maker to deploy a DOCSIS 3.0 modem that supports gigabit speeds.

Hitron Technologies Inc. announced Monday that it has signed deployment deals with two US cable operators -- Suddenlink Communications and General Communication Inc. (GCI) (Nasdaq: GNCMA) -- for its new CDA3-35 cable modem. Leveraging 32x8 channel-bonding, the new cable modem can enable downstream speeds as high as 1.2 Gbit/s in North America, the highest speed yet for modems.

A major though relatively unknown modem maker that ships more than 3 million DOCSIS units around the world annually, Hitron is referring to its new device as the cable industry's "first gigabit cable modem." The company says that both Suddenlink and GCI, which are both now launching gigabit speeds in their first markets, will use the modems for their 1-Gig rollouts. (See Suddenlink Goes Full Blast.)

The new Hitron modem is relying on Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC)'s Puma 6-MG DOCSIS processor and MaxLinear Corp. 's 32-channel MXL268 tuner, which are drop-in and software-compatible upgrades to those companies' prior 16-channel and 24-channel solutions. Sensing MSO demand for gigabit speeds even before the next-gen cable broadband spec DOCSIS 3.1 can be deployed, Intel and MaxLinear have been developing their 32-channel solutions since at least last winter.

Read more about Gigabit Cities and the expansion of gig services in our Gigabit Cities section here on Light Reading.

It's not yet clear how many other cable operators may start deploying the 32-channel modems as they seek to match the gigabit speeds now being introduced by such major telcos and fiber players as AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), CenturyLink Inc. (NYSE: CTL) and Google Fiber Inc. With the first DOCSIS 3.1 devices now being tested, and Cablelabs about to start certifying those devices, many, if not most, MSOs may decide to hold off and wait for D3.1 gear to become available so they can offer multi-gigabit speeds, even though that equipment will cost more, at least initially.

But what is clear is that the cable demand for deploying 1-Gig speeds and higher is strong and growing. In a recent survey of cable providers across the globe, for example, IHS Inc. found that, on average, providers expect to pass about a third of their residential broadband subscribers with DOCSIS 3.1-enabled headends by April 2017. In the US alone, that would translate to more than 17 million cable modem homes passed by D3.1, which is designed to support data downstream speeds as high as 10 Gbit/s and upstream speeds of 1 Gbit/s or more. (See DOCSIS 3.1 Seen Taking Off.)

— Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading

About the Author(s)

Alan Breznick

Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading

Alan Breznick is a business editor and research analyst who has tracked the cable, broadband and video markets like an over-bred bloodhound for more than 20 years.

As a senior analyst at Light Reading's research arm, Heavy Reading, for six years, Alan authored numerous reports, columns, white papers and case studies, moderated dozens of webinars, and organized and hosted more than 15 -- count 'em --regional conferences on cable, broadband and IPTV technology topics. And all this while maintaining a summer job as an ostrich wrangler.

Before that, he was the founding editor of Light Reading Cable, transforming a monthly newsletter into a daily website. Prior to joining Light Reading, Alan was a broadband analyst for Kinetic Strategies and a contributing analyst for One Touch Intelligence.

He is based in the Toronto area, though is New York born and bred. Just ask, and he will take you on a power-walking tour of Manhattan, pointing out the tourist hotspots and the places that make up his personal timeline: The bench where he smoked his first pipe; the alley where he won his first fist fight. That kind of thing.

Subscribe and receive the latest news from the industry.
Join 62,000+ members. Yes it's completely free.

You May Also Like