COLOGNE -- Today’s cable hybrid fiber coax (HFC) plant has grown from primarily a residential video network to a wireline aggregation network for all types of access markets, including small-medium businesses, Wi-Fi and LTE backhaul, and IoT and M2M.
Cable operators are looking to meet the broadband needs of their customers, including support for new applications like OTT streaming video and 5G mobile backhaul.
To meet these demands, operators are looking to simplify their networks, increase capacity, and speed time to market for new services while keeping costs under control.
As part of its strategy for distributed access architecture for cable operators, Cisco today announced availability of its ‘Infinite Broadband’ Remote PHY solution (RPHY) for Cable Access networks.
Remote PHY and DOCSIS 3.1, two CableLabs standards, work together to expand capacity of the cable HFC plants. Building on the Cisco cBR-8 converged broadband router and GS7000 node platforms, RPHY allows for a reduction of power, cooling and hub site sizing, providing significant total cost of ownership (TCO) benefits. It is the foundation for Cisco’s virtualization and Full Duplex DOCSIS strategy.
Cisco’s RPHY solution is based on open, standardized software that was contributed to Cable Labs OpenRPD forum in 2016. This open source initiative creates an ecosystem of Remote PHY device (RPD) vendors, allowing operators to select an RPD vendor that best meets their needs, without being locked into a single vendor’s proprietary solution.
Cisco is also planning to provide for interop testing between these OpenRPD vendors using a third-party testing facility. Among the companies planning to participate in the test are VECTOR Technologies, BKtel networks, Teleste and others.
RPHY has been shipping to customers in multiple countries since April 2017.
Also available today is Cisco’s RPHY deployment automation software based on model-driven network configuration protocol (NETCONF) and YANG technology. Cisco’s cable automation software ensures that the new Remote PHY devices can be easily and automatically provisioned, resulting in significant savings over existing manual provisioning solutions.
“Remote PHY is an exciting innovation, and as we continue to evolve our network to provide the best broadband experience to our customers, we are looking to leverage technologies such as this that support our goal of building a distributed, intelligent, IP-based architecture,” said Dr. Robert Howald, vice president, network architecture at Comcast Cable.
“Remote PHY plays a key role in the continued evolution of the access network at Cox and will allow Cox to innovate and improve the customer experience,” said Mike Latino, vice president, Service Infrastructure and Delivery, Cox Communications. “Cox remains a strong supporter of open standards that drive innovation in the market; DOCSIS 3.1 and RPHY are key examples. Cisco’s support of the Cablelabs’ open-source OpenRPD program for RPHY is important in order to drive fast adoption. As we work closely with Cisco to test and integrate this technology, we continue our network evolution to support the data, video and voice services of the future.”
“Evolving our access network is part of our long-term strategy to build the next generation of cable access converged networks based on open standards,” said Colin Buechner, managing director, Access Network, Liberty Global plc. “Remote PHY will allow Liberty Global to continue providing the best customer experience, based on the highest bandwidth, cutting-edge technology and interoperable ecosystem.”
“We’ve seen huge success with our cBR-8 platform after just two years,” said Sean Welch, vice president and general manager, Service Provider Infrastructure Group, Cisco. “RPHY is the next step in the evolution to an all-IP network that is faster, more scalable, and simpler to operate. RPHY provides a foundation for further network evolution, such as Infinite DOCSIS and Cloud Native technologies, allowing our customers to reduce the total cost of ownership, while keeping their cable networks competitive for the future.”
Cisco is building the simplified, automated and virtualized network platform of the future based on industry-leading software, systems, silicon and services. This enables service providers, media and web companies worldwide to reduce costs, speed time-to-market, secure their networks and sustain profitable growth.
Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO)