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Gfast map July 2017

Dark blue: Firm commitments from incumbent: BT (10M), Belgacom, Australian NBN, Swisscom,  Austria, Bezeq Israel, Chunghwa Taiwan, Telus Canada, Telekom South Africa, SK Korea, (U.S.) AT&T, Century, Frontier, Windstream, Belgium, Omantel

Light blue: Smaller carriers in Germany, Norway, Finland, Japan

Green: Incumbent likely:  France, Germany, & Poland  

Not a gigabit but pretty darn good. AT&T, assured the DirecTV merger is going through, is about to go public with the long-planned upgrade of ~5M U-Verse homes to hundreds of megabits. They will take four years and reach about 15% of their homes. Gigabit gear won't be available for several years.

Randall Stephenson in 2004 told Wall Street AT&T was using fiber, not copper, for all “new builds,” although I believe it took a few more years. “New builds” are 1-2% of the network each year. That suggests four million to eight million homes are ready with FTTB.

With most of the construction already done, the upgrade will easily fit in AT&T reduced capital budget. I estimate G.fast will cost $75-250 per home passed. The cost over four years is is only a few % of annual capex and will be recovered in months from customer charges. It would be stupid not to upgrade and AT&T's top management isn't stupid.  

The 400-700 megabit down speed of today's G.fast is confirmed by the early field trials. I previously reported that Swisscom, "Gets between 285 and 402 Mbps downstream and between 85 and 109 Mbps upstream. Results depend on copper cable length: on short copper cables (ca 24 meters) we were even able to reach 624 Mbps Downstream / 151 Mbps Upstream in field but without connected customers." Telekom Austria measured 536 megabits down and 116 up.

The chart below, from Alcatel, shows combined upstream and downstream speeds in early testing. Combined, the speeds up to 150 meters are 500-800 megabits. Subtracting 100 megabits for the upstream yields 400-700 megabits downstream, what I had estimated from a different data set.

Telcos in France, England, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Belgium, Canada and across the U.S. are scrambling to upgrade to counter the gigabit coming from cable. 

Separately, The “concession” of offering LTE “broadband lite” to 13M ? homes is more stage magic. AT&T has already built the LTE network for 97-98% of the U.S. and is already serving these areas. These are mostly rural or semi-rural homes where AT&T has unused capacity on the LTE network and isn't even using most of their spectrum. Some people think these are homes unserved by broadband. That's highly unlikely since there are only about 5M “unserved” homes in the U.S. Most of those 5M unserved are in the same extremely small pockets where LTE also isn't offered. 

From Alcatel, a rate reach diagram for G.fast. 

Alcatel G.fast speed data

 

The Site for gfast 230
 

G.fast News
A remarkable 400 people attended the very strong Broadband Forum BASE events in Berlin and Las Vegas. Trevor confirmed BT would pass the million this year. Cioffi projected “Waveguide DSL” could carry 10 gigabits a kilometer as well as a terabit 100 meters. Werner sees a 4X improvement in upstream with cDTA. Much more in next issue.

Deutsche Wants a Gigabit, Finally Realizes 50 Meg Isn't Enough http://bit.ly/2zeZ5oZ
Deutsche Telekom is finally realizing that 50 megabit DSL won't make it against gigabit cable. VP Franz Seiser is blunt. "We must change radically, become disruptive and, above all, throw away things," he proclaims at BBWF. After years of DT insisting 50 megabits is plenty, we now hear "it is about Gigabit products" from DT's Robert Soukup.  
    A lucky building in Frankfurt will receive 500+ megabit service as ultra-conservative Deutsche Telekom experiments with G.fast. Soukup told BBWF, "We're going to have a field test in Frankfurt with G.fast and Fiber To The Building (FTTB.) We will know by the end of the year if this is the right way to go." Hint to Soukup: Yes it is. G.fast is working well at a dozen telcos I;ve talked to.
     The details are surprising. DT is going for CORD, Open Source, Calix, and Radisys. http://bit.ly/2zeZ5oZ

*** The new Telebyte Guide to Testing Gfast follows the Broadband Forum IR-337 Gfast test specification, the same used by the University of New Hampshire (UNH-IOL) for Gfast certification testing. Free download http://bit.ly/telebyte (ad) It is the best technical guide to G.fast  I have seen. Grab it. Dave

1.6 Gig in Sckipio-Calix Test http://bit.ly/Calix16
A telco tells me they are getting impressive early results from the Calix 48 port DSLAM with the new Sckipio 212 MHz chips. There still is work to do but this is encouraging. 
    Carriers want DSLAMs with more than 16 ports to reduce the deployment costs from the basement or larger field cabinets. Speed matters to the marketing side of the company; AT&T's CEO believes he must offer a true gigabit to match cable. (They've been getting ~750 megabits with first generation chips. http://bit.ly/Calix16

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Beyond-the-Box visibility and control extends quality-of-experience (QoE) beyond the gateway to the end-user device for every device in the home. Based on ASSIA technology, proven across 80 million subscribers http://bit.ly/2dj7FJk (ad)

Reverse Power 4 Port DSLAM for Australia http://bit.ly/NetcommRP
Australia is connecting 1M homes to G.fast, some with a Netcomm distribution point mini-DSLAM. It's a small unit designed for pole or pit mounting. It's waterproof, pressure proof, and temperature resistant. Their matching home modem is bittorrent friendly, with two USB ports for a hard drive dedicated to sharing.
     A reverse power unit at the customer, the NDD-0100-01, can save the cost of bringing power to the DSLAM. They don't expect many orders until the second half of 2018, as nbn is waiting for the second generation chips. Netcomm demonstrated RP with BT Openreach in August. http://bit.ly/NetcommRP

*** Sckipio's Three advances are taking G.fast to the next level.http://bit.ly/Sckipio (ad)

Australia Makes it Official: G.fast to Million Plus http://bit.ly/GFAussie
No news here. In September, 2015, I reported Australia's nbn Going G.fast. This June. I reported the million home fiber to the curb (kerb?) was beginning. Unfortunately, they are no closer to figuring out where to find the needed $10B to $20B to cover the cost overruns. Instead, the parties are battling in Parliament about who is to blame. http://bit.ly/GFAussie

2 Bonded 212 Lines = 3 Gigabitshttp://bit.ly/twobonded
Sckipio at BBWF is demonstrating 3 gigabits down, nearly a gigabit up, over two phone lines, bonded. Twice the bandwidth (212 MHz instead of 106 MHz) times two lines is fast. Sckipio does great demos; at CES, they showed G.fast first generation chips delivering almost 1 gig upstream.
    “Sckipio is pushing Gfast to astonishing speeds with production silicon,” CEO David Baum proclaims. Calix is using the SCK23000 chipset in their 48 port gig+ DSLAM at the show. http://bit.ly/twobonded

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