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gfast map nov

Dark Green: 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

Mid Pink: Smaller carriers in Germany, Norway, Finland, Japan

Light Green: Incumbent likely:  France, Germany, Italy

Double spectrumDeutsche Telekom and NetCologne have tested it. Adtran thinks they will be able to ship soon, but NetCologne doesn't expect much until next year. Broadcom's Greg Fischer confirms to me, "We entered production with 212 MHz G.Fast devices last quarter and also released production standards compliant iDTA.  We’re working with standards groups to assure same with cDTA." 

212 MHz should deliver as much as a gig up to about 200 meters.

That covers most buildings. Almost all would be covered by a second system is deployed for the upper stories.

Broadcom has a "policy of not publishing data on our devices." That goes back to the days of Henry Nicholas, apparently a fan of ‎Sun Tzu. (Henry, a brilliant engineer, is a fan of many things. See this and other articles in the LA Times.) 

NetCologne's demo ran at 1.6 gig down, 200 meg up, close to the predicted maximum speed of the technology. The DT/Adtran was only specified as "over a gigabit." Lacking more details, I wondered whether there was a problem with chip performance. Questions like that are inevitable when information is limited. 

Vectoring noise cancellation is of course a challenge at the high speeds, so everyone will be waiting for demonstrations with a full binder. Australia and others are interested in remote power, also tbd. Broadcom has done innovative work with local error correction, and I'd like to see that shown as well. 

Most important, traditional industry practice is to have a second source. Broadcom has just been locked out of the crucial German market in a patent dispute. They also lost a preliminary decision at the U.S. Trade Agency. They happen to be right on the substance; Tessera is demanding an unreasonable royalty. But that holds little weight in the absurd patent system.

Stuff happens. A factory can catch fire. A huge customer can demand priority. A development program can fall behind. (35b was promised for 2016. DT now says it won't be ready until h2 2018.) Everyone wants to be protected.

Sckipio is hard at work on 212. It will be reassuring when the two demonstrate interop, as the lead at a very large telco discussed with me.

 Here's the pr from last fall


Broadcom Drives into the Mainstream with New DSL Infrastructure Device Family

Second-generation chipset delivers the most comprehensive solution, with industry-leading density, functionality, and power efficiency
SAN JOSE, Calif., and SINGAPORE , October 12, 2016
Broadcom Limited (NASDAQ: AVGO) today announced the availability of the industry’s most scalable platform for DSL service provider infrastructure. With a 4X reduction in device count and improvement in power dissipation of up to 40%, the Broadcom® BCM65400 family of devices enables the creation of a complete portfolio of systems with simultaneous VDSL and G.vector capability, from reverse-powered DPUs to high-capacity DSLAMs.
Improving on Broadcom’s production-deployed previous architectures, the BCM65400 incorporates eighth-generation FirePath® DSPs, a new vectoring core, and a complete set of 1G-to-10G datapath interfaces.  These new resources allow the family to offer the industry’s lowest power dissipation, scale to the highest line densities, and provide the benefits promised by recent amendments, including support for the new 212MHz profile, with aggregate speeds of up to 2Gbps, and dynamic time allocation (DTA).
Broadcom’s solutions offer the unique ability to fall back to VDSL2/ADSL standards, in addition to, with simultaneous, independent vectoring domains, enabling the operator to update central office equipment independently from the customer premise. Building upon this, the 65400 expands the addressable market for to point-to-point coaxial cable, often installed in multi-dwelling units (MDUs), apartment buildings and other high-density housing.
“With our second generation infrastructure chipset, we set out to deliver a scalable platform that system vendors could use for the full range of system densities,” said Greg Fischer, senior vice president and general manager of Broadband Carrier Access, Broadcom. “Aligning this new configuration with our ongoing commitment to build comprehensive, industry-leading support for the new capabilities of the standard, we believe the BCM65400 offers a uniquely competitive solution for our DSL system vendor partners and the operators they serve.”
“As we move from field trials to an expanded pilot, Openreach requires a flexible silicon platform that covers the full range of line densities in our diverse infrastructure and maximizes rate and reach performance,” said Peter Bell, director network portfolio, Openreach, British Telecom’s local network business. “We are encouraged that Broadcom has developed a scalable solution that is aligned with our roadmap.”
“Gigabit services for consumer households have become the gold standard for connectivity, and service providers have focused investment on deploying PON further into their networks,” said John Kendall, principal analyst, Connected Home at IHS Markit Technology. “Even as providers provision their networks for next generation bandwidth speeds, DSL is still a very important market segment. provides a powerful tool for providers seeking to deploy fiber to the most financially sensible point, in order to maximize return on capital investment.”
The Broadcom BCM65400 family of devices is sampling today and available through distributors worldwide.

The Site for gfast 230 News

I’m still working through remarkable presentations from the Broadband Forum events. Michael Weissman, Bernd Hesse and team did a remarkable job choosing the speakers.

Deutsche Telecom: 35b Supervectoring Delayed to 2019
Broadcom is now over 3 years late. DT briefed German reporters after their financial call and revealed 35b was now delayed until 2019. 35b should deliver 200+ meg downloads 500-600 meters, a crucial tool for DT, which is losing share to cable. Cable now covers about 70% of Germany and is expanding. DT now only offers 50-100 megabit DSL while cable is often 400 megabits, going to a gigabit. 

The problem is software; the hardware is shipping and supposedly will work. DT says 35b is not ready to turn on. Broadcom in 2015 said 35b was in "production" in the press release below. Alcatel in early 2016 said to expect complete systems very soon. "35g is very similar to 17a so there should be little delay."

Broadcom's problems are leading major telcos and vendors to have a plan B, using Sckipio DT itself is planning extensive deployments in 2019, mostly in apartment buildings.

Gigabit 100 Meters - Unless the Wires are Lousy
Speeds are fine, "Unless there's a line problem." I've been reporting for three years that ~10% of lines have problems. In the chart by Rami Verbin of Sckipio, he finds goes ~130 meters on good lines. Poor lines have about half the reach. 

His chart roughly matches the reports from Swisscom, Belgacom, and England for both & vectored DSL. The 10% with problems can cause the majority of the line-related complaints to support. The angry customers drive up cost.

Rami's solution to reach the gigabit is bonding, supported on the Sckipio chips. Verbin made some additional points:

  • 4 gigabits is possible by bonding two decent 2 gigabit lines.
  • Even in a service from remote cabinets, ~25% are close enough to get a full gigabit."
  • cDTA and iDTA are practical ways to deliver much higher upstream by switching some bandwidth from downstream to upstream only when needed.
  • 35B will probably be similar but Deutsche Telecom doesn't expect to deploy until 2019.

AT&T Wants Coax 2-5 Gigabit Very Soon.
AT&T faces intense competition from cable, talking about 10 gigabits in both directions. (Cable will only be 1 gig down, ~100 meg up, until ~2021.) AT&T wants something to brag about as well.

AT&T gained millions of lines of coax as part of the DirecTV deal. Alcatel and Huawei are leading the development of G.mgfast. That uses 424 MHz, full duplex, to achieve ~2.5 gigabits in both directions. The reach on telco twisted pair is only about 30 meters. On coax, those speeds can probably extend far enough to service most apartment buildings. Using 848 MHz, speeds can reach 5 gigabits. The ITU standards group has been aiming for 2019-2020 for G.mgfast, too slow for AT&T's marketers. David Titus wants a high-speed standard for coax "early in 2018." He believes that is "doable."

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