G.fast announcements are starting to roll in during the run-up to next week's Broadband World Forum in London.
The technology, which supercharges copper connections by increasing the frequency range, received a massive boost last year when UK fixed-line incumbent BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA) put G.fast at the very heart of its ultra-fast broadband strategy. (See Long-Range, High-Speed Gfast Is Coming – BT.)
A year on, and with trials still in progress, questions linger about G.fast's real-world potential and, indeed, its ability to meet European demands for high-speed broadband connectivity. (See G.fast Could Use a Boost.)
Yet the technology is undoubtedly improving. Next year, an Amendment 3 to the G.fast standard will double the frequency range and make it much easier for service providers to use G.fast from street cabinets served by fiber, instead of deploying it at distribution points close to customer premises. That should make the economics of a widespread G.fast deployment look far more attractive.
In the meantime, a recently ratified Amendment 2 is nudging G.fast into a faster lane in the broadband superhighway through techniques such as higher bit loading and by increasing the transit power. Innovations like dynamic time allocation (DTA), which adjusts downstream or upstream capacity depending on specific circumstances, could also lead to major bandwidth improvements.
Next week's show will provide an opportunity to see a few of these technologies in demonstration. But Light Reading here provides a quick round-up of the most significant vendor updates over the last few days:
Expect to hear a lot more about the technology in London next week.
— Iain Morris, , News Editor, Light Reading