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
- Published: 23 January 2017 23 January 2017
5%-10% disparity between ECI & Huawei. Tests in December show Huawei VDSL DSLAMs in Britain have a mean download speed of 32.6 Mbps. ECI DSLAMs measure 30.5 Mbps. The chart below, by Andrew Ferguson of ThinkBroadband, has a series of readings over time that are fairly consistent. Ferguson notes, "Huawei has been slightly ahead since July 2016 after years of being neck and neck." He goes on to speculate the difference may be due to the implementation of G.INP, a very fast error correction method. Broadcom introduced G.INP years ago with some fanfare, but the results were very modest. I had heard things had improved, so this data doesn't surprise me. Andrew writes me he will also be watching the lower target noise margins BT is testing. They now use 6dB but will be testing 3, 4, 5dB. These are log scales, so even a few dB makes a difference. Lab tests suggest a significant speed increase.
- Published: 19 January 2017 19 January 2017
Slow in the first half, probably ramping in the second half. AT&T is being officially coy, but a senior source confirmed they are definitely moving ahead on G.fast. Tom Starr played an important role in the standard and they were one of the first in trials. Their top executives have been enthusiastic several times. They have been making quiet moves in D.C. to get out of their commitment to 12.5 million fiber homes, presumably using G.fast instead.
G.fast is logical for them. They've built an enormous amount of fiber the last few years, going first to businesses. In many places, fiber can be extended inexpensively to nearby buildings. They are also expanding their trial of WTTR - Wireless to the rooftop - beyond Minneapolis. Wall Street is riding them for the lines lost to cable, now going to a gigabit in most of the U.S.
They have millions of lines of coax connected to rooftop antennas from the DirecTV buy.
- Published: 15 January 2017 15 January 2017
The Chinese chipmaker has been almost invisible for two years, at least in the West. They are a substantial company, now ten years old. Their CEO is a U.C.L.A. Ph.D who was successful in American chip companies until he founded Triductor in 2005 in California. The funding and market developed in China and they moved. They have a substantial business although I've seen no figures. Huawei, by far the largest telecom supplier, has a close relationship. I covered Triductor a while back, when they were considering extending their VDSL line to G.fast. Good to see another supplier confident of G.fast demand.
Lincoln Lavoie's University of New Hampshire Interoperability Lab is crucial to the future of G.fast and is strongly supported by the Broadband Forum. Broadcom and Sckipio are working hard to make their chips fully compatible because their customers want more than one choice. As so many vendors cut back, any smart buyer wants the protection of a second source.
- Published: 10 January 2017 10 January 2017
Hundreds of megabits to apartments for a very low cost. For a decade, millions have been getting 100 megabits from fiber to the basement + VDSL on existing building wiring. Now, there's a surge of wireless to the roof, led by AT&T in Minneapolis and Webpass (bought by Google) in San Francisco. Speeds range from 200 megabits to nearly a gigabit and system latency is good. The very visible and ambitious Starry is starting to test WTTR in Boston. They are running mmWave to the rooftop for backhaul and using G.hn to reach apartments.
** Update: I had a chance to talk to CEO Chet Kanoja. They have not seen a G.hn congestion problem and he doesn't expect problems going forward. Everyone's watching for field results. They found an ODM supplier for the G.hn at the transmitter and design their own gateways. Even more interesting, they are going millimeter wave to houses and apartments in volume. He's designed a 5 gigabit mmWave transmitter built up from 802.11ac that is point to multipoint. He says his cost is $800-$1,000, which will transform the economics. It implies he will be delivering something similar to Verizon's 5G at a much lower cost. I'll remain skeptical until that's widely deployed in the field, but the details he provided were convincing. Dave **
- Published: 04 January 2017 04 January 2017
They don't intend to be left behind. AT&T's Tom Starr is one of the key engineers behind G.fast, which was developed based on the plans of British Telecom and AT&T. Their top execs have been enthusiastic about G.fast but carefully didn't commit. January 4, 2017, they announced "Experiments expanding" and that they were "encouraged" by results in Minneapolis. Cable is making strong inroads against U-Verse and destroying AT&T where they never upgraded decade-old DSL. They have to do something. They intend to abandon landlines and go completely wireless to 10M homes. The 12.5M fiber home lines are only about a quarter of their future footprint.
G.fast from basements and rooftops is the natural cost-effective choice and has strong advocates within the company. AT&T spent $billions expanding fiber to 1,000,000 business addresses. Much of that is very close to residential buildings and easy to extend. AT&T is speeding up their fiber home build, now at 4M. The 12.5M target is now moved up to mid 2019. They acquired millions of lines connected by coax to a DirecTV rooftop antenna. G.fast performance over coax is exceptional.
I've reported that T is actively looking for more buildings for WTTR, which likely will migrate from dedicated lines to G.fast.
- Published: 03 January 2017 03 January 2017
"DSL is terrible, but it doesn’t have to be," writes Rob Pegoraro, who has written regularly for The Washington Post and USA Today. He's on target that the telcos offer about half the country an awful service, 10-15 year-old DSL at speeds of 2-10 megabits. That's terrible today and customers are flocking to cable. But he also reports that #1, AT&T and #3, Centurylink, are getting serious about G.fast at 500 megabits and more.
Rob picked up my comment, "G.fast will be a real factor in 2017 but for a relatively small number of homes," and went on to call G.fast "A new hope." My guess is that both AT&T and Century will start deploying widely in the second half of 2017.