Open Source

Altice cooks up RDK-powered broadband gateways

Representing another major service provider to put its weight behind the Reference Design Kit (RDK), Altice Labs has introduced a lineup of broadband gateways powered by the open source software that it will make available to service providers on a global basis.

As an increasing number of MSOs and telcos operate multiple types of access networks, Altice Labs is debuting gateway models that support both hybrid fiber/coax (HFC) and fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) networks.

Its initial set of RDK-powered devices include a GPON gateway and DOCSIS 3.1 gateway with integrated WiFi 6; and a DOCSIS 3.0 gateway with WiFi 5. Altice Labs said an RDK-based gateway that supports XGS-PON paired with WiFi 6 will debut "in the coming months."

Those devices initially will be used by Altice Europe and Altice USA, which operate both HFC and FTTP networks. Altice Labs plans to show the new lineup off to other service providers at next week's Broadband World Forum event in Amsterdam.

The RDK GPON gateway has already been deployed with SFR (part of Altice Europe) in France, Alcino Lavrador, GM of Altice Labs, said in a statement.

Why this matters
Altice Labs believes that the RDK-based gateways gives service providers a common platform for key broadband functions, including WiFi management, device diagnostics and data analytics, that can reach across multiple types of access networks.

Adoption by Altice USA also marks a sizable win for the Reference Design Kit, a preintegrated software stack that is managed by a joint venture of Comcast, Liberty Global and Charter Communications. Today's announcement builds on the dozens of service providers that are either evaluating, testing or deploying RDK. Outside of Comcast and Liberty Global, examples of other operators with announced deployment plans for RDK include J:COM (Japan); Melita (Malta); NOS and NOWO (Portugal); Tele Columbus and Vodafone (Germany); and Rogers Communications, Shaw Communications and Videotron (Canada).

Altice Labs' involvement could also provide RDK with additional competitive footing against other open source platforms, such as OpenWRT and Prpl, a carrier-class option with ties to OpenWRT that is being optimized for service providers.

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— Jeff Baumgartner, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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