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NFV Specs/Open Source

AT&T Wants OCP to Consider uCPE Spec

AUSTIN -- Big Communications Event -- AT&T is hoping to form a team within the Open Compute Project that can develop specifications for an open approach to virtual customer premises equipment, an AT&T Labs executive said here today.

Addressing the Open Compute Project Summit, one of the pre-conference workshops at BCE, John Gibbons, lead member of technical staff, laid out AT&T's approach thus far to developing an x86 box that sits at the customer prem and hosts various virtualized network functions, under its Flexware brand.

"One of our goals with OCP is to take advantage of the OCP community to define a reference architecture spec for uCPE," Gibbons said. "We want to bring the innovation and requirements from across our industry to provide a high-quality, cost-effective solution for our end customers."

By creating a hardware standard, AT&T hopes to allow its traditional network vendor community to focus its resources on software innovation, he added.

OCP was launched by Facebook in 2011 to build industry support behind common open data center designs. AT&T is a platinum member of OCP, as isD eutsche Telekom. A number of other operators are silver members.

The move comes as Verizon, also part of OCP, is preparing its own uCPE, which it discussed publicly at another recent event. In responding to Gibbons's suggestion, one audience member at the OCP Summit suggested the carriers come together and present their ideas for uCPE. Gibbons said he welcomed input and involvement from other network operators. (See Verizon Readies Its Universal CPE.)

AT&T has already shared its specifications for access devices for both XGS-PON and G.fast, two access services the company is planning. At today's OCP Summit, Tom Anschutz, distinguished member of technical staff, updated those plans to include the addition of 24-port, one rack unit pizza box style access device, designed for XGS-PON service to multi-dwelling units.

— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading


Ming-Hung Liu 6/28/2017 | 4:23:31 AM
uCPE is achievable Since from more than 10yrs ago, lots of senior prophets dreamed of if there's a generic CPE platform to support the EPON/GPON through a pluggable PON TRx. Yet, there's without anyPON processor can support this platform. So, there're lots of strange PON stick solutions and specific EPON or GPON CPE during these 10 yrs.

But now, you can find lots of PON chip support GbE/EPON/GPON through SGMII interface. You can even find the ready xDSL/G.fast SFP solution in market as pioneer SwissCom adopt for their StarGate platform.

It means this anyPHY uCPE may come with this flexible SFP today. If all operators are still willingly kidnapped by system or CPE vendor using specific SoC box, it's no matter why they can only keep on replacing their CPE again and again to pursue any new technology. Then, we can find uCPE will still be a fantasy on paper!!
Duh! 5/16/2017 | 12:53:05 PM
Network equipment To clarify: AT&T's OCP contrributions to date have been network-side equipment: (x)PON Optical Line Terminations (OLT) and G.fast Distribution Point Units (DPU). It's going to be interesting to see how open uCPE plays out with respect to access, particularly whether PON- and G.fast- line-side interfaces will be integrated with the uCPE or remain is single-purpose ONT or NT-1 boxes, whether line-side functions will be modular.
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