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5G Transport - A 2023 Heavy Reading Survey 2023 Open RAN Operator Survey Coherent Optics at 100G, 400G, and Beyond Open RAN Platforms and Architectures Operator Survey Cloud Native 5G Core Operator Survey Bridging the Digital Divide 5G Network Slicing Operator Survey Open, Automated & Programmable Transport The Journey to Cloud Native
I think that cheap labor is not the explanation. I think that "TO" based micro-optics devices and packaging technology are already semi-automated. Chip labor & real estate add only more competitiveness. Actually, BOM is the main cost of micro-optic device.
The problem with exponent and in general with silicon based integrated optics... is that it is not integrated.
You need assembly procedures to integrate separated active/passive components (Laser, PIN/APD, filters, etc...).
- Long BOM (management of supplier, qualify separate parts, usually custom for your process)
- You need expensive packaging equipment;
TO-based micro-optics is, on the contrary, there for more than 10 years. It already developed economy of scale, and for simple functionalities, like diplexer, triplexer, tosa/rosa are also unbeatable in terms of optical performance.
Silicon it is far from being and integrated platform for optics as for electronics. InP is the real platform for optical integration. Today, still too expensive.
I love technology, but it is true that we are not there yet.