The latest: South Korea's Hanaro Telecom Inc. said it's using the Cisco uBR10012 cable modem termination system (CMTS) to deliver an Internet service that caps the downstream at 100 Mbit/s. In addition to access to the Internet, the operator is using the service to pipe in its "HanaTV" video-on-demand service over IP. (See Hanaro Picks Cisco.)
It appears that customers are clamoring for the channel-bonded service, as about 200,000 customers have signed on for it since the launch in April.
While operators like Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) have started to test 3.0, most of the deployment and trial news is occurring outside the U.S. Here's a snapshot:
- In February, Canadian MSO Vidéotron Telecom Ltd. teamed with Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) to deliver a 100-Mbit/s downstream service. (See Videotron Plans 100-Mbit/s Service.)
- Virgin Media Inc. (Nasdaq: VMED) is seeking volunteers to join a "Phase 2" pilot of a service based on Docsis 3.0 channel bonding. (See Virgin Bonds With Docsis .)
- Vidéotron Telecom Ltd. of Singapore, in tandem with Motorola Inc. (NYSE: MOT), has launched a 100-Mbit/s MaxOnline Ultimate tier across the board.
- Jupiter Telecommunications Co. Ltd. (J:COM) of Japan is using modems and CMTSs from Arris Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ARRS) to support a service that caps the downstream at 160 Mbit/s and the upstream at 10 Mbit/s. (See Japanese MSO Moves 160 Mbit/s.)
- Also in Japan, three operators -- Akita, Hino, and Baycom -- are using the BigBand Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: BBND) universal edge QAM as the downstream component of a modular CMTS design that's capping speeds at 120 Mbit/s. (See BigBand Edge QAM Goes 'Universal'.)
- At the recent IBC conference, UPC Broadband announced it was working with Cisco on a channel-bonding trial in the Netherlands.
Although some MSOs might be considering pre-3.0 technologies to stave of pockets of fiber-to-the-home competition, it appears that most are waiting for modems and CMTSs to come through CableLabs testing with flying colors. That could happen as early as mid-December, setting up the beginning of a deployment cycle sometime in 2008. (See CableLabs Preps for Docsis 3.0 Tests .)
— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News