Gfast map

gfast map copy


In 2016, looked very promising.
Thousands worked at developing and deploying.
It wasn't enough. 
Most carriers are investing
in fiber or 5G instead.


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

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

Light Blue: Incumbent likely:  France, Germany, Italy

The Site for gfast 230 News

35b: Ready or Not? Germans Say Not, Some Say Yes
A reader wondered about my 35b story writing, "35b to my knowledge is already in market." I know Fastweb in Italy is already selling to consumers at "Up to 200 megabits" but without vectoring they will often be much lower. On the other hand, Deutsche Telecom, the largest expected customer, says it won't be ready until 2019. I believe what's going on is that Broadcom is selling 35b chips but the vectoring isn't ready for large deployments.
     The reader asked what were my sources for the story Deutsche Telecom: 35b Supervectoring Delayed to 2019? That's always a fair question.
     I've been reporting 35b since 2015, but this story was inspired by an article by Achim Sawall. The official statement from DT did say 2018, so I checked with Sawall, a respected reporter. He confirmed to me that DT had updated the timing at a later press briefing.
    All of us are waiting for detailed results from the field.

Qualcomm's Not To Be Believed Comeback in
Qualcomm Ikanos division and product killed in 2016. This was widely reported and officially confirmed after I broke the story. A link from Google News took me to a "research report" from, with the four leading chipset vendors identified. They correctly identify three chipset vendors, Broadcom, Ikanos, and Metanoia. But I strongly doubt the "report" is worth its $2900 price given they claim Qualcomm makes chips. If anyone knows who is behind this fake news, please tell me.

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."

PLDT Puts Philippines on the Map - Slowly
"The telecommunications duopoly is about to end,” President Duterte promises. expecting the competition to improve services and lower prices. He invited the Chinese to be the third player in the Philippines in a meeting with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.

Incumbent PLDT is responding by connecting 100 buildings with and 35b Super-vectoring and some other places. PLDT is buying the gear from Huawei. Foreign-owned PLDT has a near monopoly on the Philippine Internet (85%) and minimal regulation. Their capex has been going down despite a dismal Philippine Internet. Filipinos have the slowest Internet in Asia, as you can see in the chart below from Akamai.

China Telecom is expanding internationally, including putting $6B on the table for bankrupt Oi Brazil. China Telecom has fiber to "essentially all of Shanghai and many other cities." Working with the Russian Railways, they have fiber across the "Belt and Road" and on through Europe. China Mobile has major investments in Thailand and Pakistan. Without a doubt, either could build throughout the Philippines in a very short time. Think Gig LTE to 85-95% of the country in 18 months, with Massive MIMO in the densest areas.

Nov 8
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
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 Soukup told BBWF, "We're going to have a field test in Frankfurt with 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. 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.

*** 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 (ad) It is the best technical guide to  I have seen. Grab it. Dave

1.6 Gig in Sckipio-Calix Test
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.

*** Self-Healing Wi-Fi With ASSIA Real-Q 
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Reverse Power 4 Port DSLAM for Australia
Australia is connecting 1M homes to, 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.

*** Sckipio's Three advances are taking to the next level. (ad)

Australia Makes it Official: to Million Plus
No news here. In September, 2015, I reported Australia's nbn Going 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.

2 Bonded 212 Lines = 3 Gigabits
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 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.

20 Gigabit DSL - Live Demo
The meter reads 20 gigabits.  Jack Zhu had just said, "You have to see this," and pulled me over. It was the first demo of Huawei's four port bonded G.mgfast. 
Two boxes perhaps five feet apart, were connected by four lines of cat 6 cable. Each line carried 5 gigabits of prestandard G.mgfast.  The total is 20 gigs, They expect that speed to go 30 meters. They are finding good performance out to 100 meters. more and a picture

*** At Broadband World Forum Berlin, make sure to visit Sckipio in Booth E101B for the latest advances in Don't miss our CTO, Rami Verbin, at the Broadband Forum Access Summit. Sckipio, the leader as deploys around the world, continues to deliver performance. (ad)

Calix Showing 48 Port DSLAM
Testing in a major telco lab. The new Sckipio chip allows daisy-chaining 24 port boards for up to 96 ports. (Other approaches require an external vectoring controller.) Calix has wasted no time developing a 48 port DSLAM, showing this week at BBWF.
The new Calix/Sckipio DSLAM also supports "up to 2 gigabits," although it best to think of that as 1.5 gigabits. The cDTA allows near instantaneous switching of an individual subscriber's bandwidth from downstream to upstream, allowing much faster upstream. more

*** Two remarkable Broadband Forum Access Summits will feature speakers including Tom  Starr of AT&T and Trevor Linney of BT. In Berlin at BBWF October 24 In Las Vegas before the Calix Connection event October 29 (psa) See you there

Will BT's 10M be Fast Enough to Protect the Company?
BT is close to a million homes passed with Trevor Linney is now leading a rapid rollout, on track for 10M in 2020. BT remains at the forefront of research and is showing impressive technical capability.
At the management level, BT's beleaguered boss Gavin Patterson quietly made a decision that is enormously risky. To save money, he canceled the original plans for a gigabit network with fiber to the distribution point. Instead, BT is putting DSLAMs at the existing cabinets, reducing speeds to 160 or 330 megabits. That's G.halffast.
New chairman Jan du Plessis may sack Gavin, more gossip

*** 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 (ad) It is the best technical guide to  I have seen. Grab it. Dave

212 MHz Likely Late 2018
Ryan Ding of Huawei is waiting for updated Broadcom firmware, which he expects before the end of the year. He will then be able to supply units for telco trials "in the first half of 2018."
Ding and everyone else are working diligently to get the DSLAMs ready to deploy in volume as soon as possible, I think late 2018 looks most likely. We won't know for sure until we have several months of tests.
Preliminary reports are that both the Sckipio and Broadcom chips are reaching 1.5 gig. more

Some of the best in the industry will be at the Broadband Forum’s BASE in Berlin and Germany and BBWF in Berlin. See you there.

10 Gigabits 500 Meters Over Phone Cables?!; Who needs fiber? Backhaul By a Dozen Bonded DSLs; Bonded 35b Tester From intec; What Will Broadcom, Huawei, Metanoia & Nokia Bring To Berlin Broadband; Newsbreak: Nokia's Hidden New SX-16F DSLAM10 Gigabits 500 Meters Over Phone Cables?!
John Cioffi theorizes that 1 Terabit/s over 100m is possible. Several world-class engineers have confirmed the theory appears correct. The same higher-order waveguide modes could deliver 10 Gbps at 500 meters, which is exciting some of the most important companies in the industry. It could drastically reduce the cost of backhauling 5G small cells in the required millions of locations. 

Some are using the name Surface Wave over Copper (SWoC) instead of TDSL as the system moves closer to test. Building a test system and proving the real challenges can be met will be expensive. The frequencies involved are at 50 GHz and higher, 200 times higher than the new 212 MHz

*** At Broadband World Forum Berlin, make sure to visit Sckipio in Booth E101B for the latest advances in Don't miss our CTO, Rami Verbin, at the Broadband Forum Access Summit. Sckipio, the leader as deploys around the world, continues to deliver performance. (ad)

Who needs fiber? Backhaul By a Dozen Bonded DSLs
12 bonded lines of 35b VDSL should be able to deliver 2 gig downstream ~400 meters. That's comparable to the most common backhaul, 2.4 gig GPON. Telcos are confident few will use the high speeds simultaneously so the high over-subscription is realistic. Upstream on the older DSLs is lower, so the upstream will probably be limited.

Kurt Raaflaub says Adtran has trial units at customers. As far as I know, this is the first public description of bonded 35b and I hadn't anticipated this possible use. Deutsche Telekom says 35b will be ready for deployment the second half of 2018.

*** Two remarkable Broadband Forum Access Summits will feature speakers including Tom  Starr of AT&T and Trevor Linney of BT. In Berlin at BBWF October 24 In Las Vegas before the Calix Connection event October 29 (psa) See you there

Bonded 35b Tester From intec
intec and Adtran have working parts for testing bonding. 35b uses double the spectrum for double the speed, 200+ megabits at 500 meters. It's not ready for the field yet, but test gear is now available from the German firm intec.  Look for them at the Broadband Forum Interop exhibit.

Jeff Waldhuter of Verizon told me not investing in testing was the biggest mistake they made in the early days of DSL. BBWF will also feature Lincoln Lavoie, who has led the UNH/Broadband Forum testing for years. You can now buy the testing software they use for your own work. UNH uses Telebyte hardware, who will speak at the show.

*** Make sure to visit Adtran Booth E102 to see important new products. Please join us on Tues 10:05 Werner Heinrich DTA 10:35 Ryan McCowan NGPON2 11:20 Kurt Raaflaub Fiber to the DP without fiber 11:35 Robert Conger NGPON2; Wed 10:30 Ronan Kelly Keynote 14:00 Robert Conger Open Networking 14:20 Gary Bolton Platform Economy 16:50 Heinrich, Chris Thompson, Jeremy Harris (separate panels); Thurs 16:50 McCowen (ad) 

What Will Broadcom, Huawei, Metanoia & Nokia Bring To Berlin Broadband
Companies time releases for BBWF, the biggest event of the year. Here are some possibilities for the companies that haven't provided me news yet.

Huawei will brief me at their Hangzhou event this week. For now, I know the 96 port external vectoring boxes are doing well in customer labs and probably ready. Two telcos were impressed.

(Huawei, Calix, and Adtran are very generous with the press, hosting regular events. All three do a good job trying to answer questions when they can. The result is they get far more coverage. I make a point of reaching out to those who tell me less, including writing this as a reminder.) 

Metanoia is the third chipmaker that joins the UNH interops. Nokia and Broadcom have yet to speak so I make a few guesses.

*** 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 (ad) It is the best technical guide to  I have seen. Grab it. Dave

Newsbreak: Nokia's Hidden New SX-16F DSLAM
Buried deep in an SDAN announcement is a mention of a Lightspan SX-16F. They call it  "The world's first 16-port reverse-powered micro-node which can be safely reverse-powered from the home." No more details available at press time.

*** Two remarkable Broadband Forum Access Summits will feature speakers including Tom  Starr of AT&T and Trevor Linney of BT. In Berlin at BBWF October 24 Las Vegas before the Calix Connection event October 29 (psa) See you there

Broadband Forum BASE: Berlin Oct 24 Las Vegas October 29
Free BASE? Yes, no charge to hear 30 of the most informed people in the industry/  Trevor Linney of BT, who tells me they are pas 550,000 homes, a million are close, and the build to ten million is going well. David Titus and Tom Starr of AT&T, moving aggressively to buildings across the U.S.Vincent O'Bryne of Verizon, the leading proponent of NG-PON2. 

See you there. Look for the round fellow with a beard and point me to news I missed.

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Volume 18, #5 Oct 16, 2017 News - AT&T Sees 1.5 Gigabits
Eric Small of AT&T tells Sean Buckley "In generation 2, you get about 1.5 Gbps of throughput," confirming what the vendors promise. "Not that you would use more than a gig in either direction, but it gives you the flexibility to use a gig in one direction and 500 Mbps in the other direction."

He adds, "The really interesting part of the second generation of Gfast is it allows for reverse powering, which means the power could come from the individual subscribers." Fierce Telecom

Randall's Xmas: 144 Gigabits, 212 MHz, 96 Port, DTA From Sckipio
More Gear Passes Interop at UNH

Tom Starr, Trevor Linney Headline Berlin Oct 24

Broadband Forum BASE Las Vegas October 29

Randall's Xmas: 144 Gigabits, 212 MHz, 96 Port, DTA From Sckipio
Randall Stephenson at AT&T "needs 1 gig speeds."and promises "1 gig speeds ubiquitously." Sckipio is ready with 212 MHz Amendment 3 chips soon to sample to selected customers - including AT&T suppliers. Using 212 MHz of spectrum almost doubles the capacity of, reaching close to 2 gigabits between upstream and downstream in lab conditions.

96 ports at 1.5 gigabits is 144 gigabits. It should be achievable over the short loops typical in apartment buildings, although they will nearly actually all be a maximum. Adtran and Huawei have demo'd external boxes that can vector 48-96 ports, but Sckipio does not require the complexity of external vectoring. Instead, the first DSLAM supports 24 or 48 ports and can be daisy-chained with others on demand. This reduces the initial capex. cDTA allows switching between upstream and downstream for each line. Much more

More Gear Passes Interop at UNH

Lincoln Lavoie sees "cross chipset interoperability and performance at all levels including device software for management and control." Gear with chips from Broadcom, Metanoia, and Sckipio are working with each other at a good speed, usually 600 megabits or higher. EXFO and Viavi testers also passed.

He adds, "Gfast testing has already been more rigorous than any previous certification testing and we are testing individual features more deeply than we have on any previous technology."Interoperability" is considered to mean working reasonably together, not necessarily at maximum performance levels.

*** At Broadband World Forum Berlin, make sure to visit Sckipio in Booth E101B for the latest advances in Don't miss our CTO, Rami Verbin, at the Broadband Forum Access Summit. Sckipio, the leader as deploys around the world, continues to deliver performance. (ad)

Tom Starr, Trevor Linney Headline Berlin Oct 24
Linney is deploying past ten million British Telecom homes, with more connecting daily. Trevor, speaking for BT, has always been open about the practical results. Starr has led DSL standards and the Forum for 25 years, seen it all and done it all. AT&T is moving aggressively on from basements around the U.S., so he too will have lessons from the field.

The new Broadband Forum Access Summit is free. Register through the BBWF website at BBWF registration on site wasn't free last I looked so make sure to register in advance. The Forum is doing a sister event in Las Vegas on Sunday, October 29th. See you at both. Look for the round fellow with a beard. After Robin Mersh opens the event, Roland Montagne of iDATE, a respected analyst, will review deployments around the world. See you there

Broadband Forum BASE Las Vegas October 29
Reverse power. DTA. Profile 212. Now is the time to start taking advantage of the advanced features, as deployments are approaching one million homes passed. Registration is free at See you there. Look for the round fellow with a beard. David Titus of AT&T will present details from their nationwide effort.

*** Self-Healing Wi-Fi With ASSIA Real-Q 
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 (ad)

Scared By Cable, Bell Canada Chooses Fiber Over
Better TV software long kept Bell's DSL ahead of cable, but both Shaw and Rogers are now deploying Comcast's respected X1 software and will likely catch up. CEO Cope hinted to Wall Street he has little choice but to find the necessary capital. was considered until very recently but Bell decided to accelerate their fiber home. They have done  most of Montreal and are working on Toronto.

212 GHz and cDTA are soon shipping from Adtran. True gigabit is here. Sales takeoff is almost in sight, probably Q1 2018.
Australia confirms 1M, AT&T is ready to ramp, DT finally is moving. Omantel and Telkom South Africa are now on the map. Almost all telcos are now choosing for large buildings when they don't go FTTH. MNet Cologne and Chunghwa Taiwan have changed from fiber all the way to in the basement.

212 MHz and cDTA Are Ready: Adtran
Frank Miller of Century: Will be Important to Us

Carl Russo: Since 2007, I've Been Turning Calix Into a Software Company

Adtran Chosen for Australia nbn Fiber to the curb.

nbn looking to a million lines. This one is big. Adtran is on a roll, with DT & AT&T also looking good for 2018.

1,400,000,000 In The Works. 1.4 Gigabits
South Africa & Connecticut Go Nokia

Omantel: 90% Fiber & News
With over 100 deployments, momentum is growing. Telkom South Africa joined in, while Century & nbn Australia are going large. Sckipio and the other chipmakers are working on the next generation chips, easily over a gigabit 100 meters.

BT and Swisscom have 48 port vectoring units working in the labs. ttp://
Australia's nbn has begun building 1M ports of FTTC.
Calix: We Can Produce Miracles (Sometimes) With the right cable in place
Nokia-Frontier Announcement Claims 30M Vectored Lines Shipped Far more than are operational
Metanoia Surprises With Interoperability Great to have another chipmaker
60+ Previously Unknown Deployments As Calix approached 100 customers
(Summaries below or follow the links.)


BT's Trevor Linney "A 48 Port Vectoring Engine is Working in Our Labs."
96 ports promised and even more sought. Burri of Swisscom confirmed he has a similar unit. Probably Huawei.

*** Telebyte, the leader in testing, offers a free guide. It's 43 pages of solid information. (ad) The ebook is excellent and essential for any engineer. Telebyte, a new advertiser, supplis the equipment for the BBF/UNH Interoperability testing.Terabit DSL for the Interested Layman

Australia NBN Begins Million Home Fiber To The Curb
Officially, it's not but they aren't stupid. When they run "fibre to your driveway," they will be within 100 meters of most people. That allows 500-800 megabits of today and over a gigabit as amendments 2 & 3 are delivered next year. Presumably, the final announcement is waiting for a government plan to deal with the over $10B in cost overruns. The good news from Australia is that finally construction is catching up, "The nbn network is currently available to almost one in two Australians, is scheduled to be three-quarters built by mid-next year and complete by 2020."

nbn is the most politically driven network in the world. Julia Gillard's election as Prime Minister in 2010 was decided by a single voter in Parliament, who attributed his decision to her support of a full fiber nbn. The Conservative government that succeeded Gillard switched much of the network to DSL, hoping to save money. The savings have proven modest; the real cost problem was not the technology choice.

Calix: We Can Produce Miracles (Sometimes)
The right (straight) cable allows remarkable choices. Bill Bittencourt startled the Summit with new results from the lab and the field. They said it couldn't be done, but Calix customers are proving it is possible to use multiple DSLAMs. Instead of being limited to 16-24 customers, that can be doubled and possibly tripled. In early testing, the second DSLAM resulted in less than a 2% loss. Many North American buildings have straight cable – otherwise known as CAT1 or “station wiring” – from a distribution point to each unit. Geoff Burke explains, "In essence, what this means is that typical MDUs have insulated wiring from the Distribution Point to the unit, which greatly minimizes cross talk and loss. VDSL2 and have minimal interference over in-building cabling.

*** Sckipio's Three advances are taking to the next level. (ad)

Nokia-Frontier Announcement Claims 30M Vectored Lines Shipped
Shipment claims are so far ahead of sales that needs an explanation. Nokia is proud they won the order from Frontier in Connecticut, a U.S. company with over 4M DSL & fiber subscribers at the end of Q1. They gave no details of when, where, or how many, so it wasn't worth a headline. In the release is the claim they've shipped, "30 million vectoring lines." I'd be surprised to discover that even 10% of those are actually deploying vectoring. Similarly, Adtran claims 10M vectored. There are remarkably few vectored lines in service. The claimed vectored ports are probably 10x or more the number of actual vectored lines. There just aren't many homes connected with vectoring.

Metanoia Surprises With Interoperability
Great to have another chip source. Broadband Forum/University of New Hampshire has announced the first six products to pass their testing: ARRIS, Calix, Huawei, Metanoia, Nokia and Technicolor. Nokia/Alcatel has long been #1 in DSL, with Huawei #2. Calix is coming on strong with, telling me they are adding so many new deployments they are about to have over one hundred customers in service. Technicolor and ARRIS/Pace/2Wire have long been top modem suppliers. But few in the industry know Metanoia, a Taiwanese chipmaker almost invisible when searching news, even on

*** Virtual fiber by Sckipio. Extend your fiber with 100-300 meters of single-port It can save expensive trenching for cell towers, small cells, basement fiber, commercial customers and others. A very thin management layer allows operators to keep their existing GPON management layer. Sckipio makes it effortless to add to any GPON network. (ad)

60+ Previously Unknown Deployments
Especially in the U.S. and Canada, there's a stampede to reach MDU customers with five hundred megabits to a gigabit. If you want to win customers in large buildings, it's becoming a no-brainer to go to - today. About six months ago, I predicted that would be the trend, but until Calix shared their customer details, I hadn't seen evidence I was right.

There are ~30 announced deployments worldwide, so I was startled when Calix told me they have about 90 customers in active deployment. I've known the Calix people for a decade or more, and don't doubt their claim. Some undoubtedly are just a building or three, but I know others, including Century/Qwest, are far beyond that stage. Geoff Burke writes, "There is no doubt that we are seeing a major shift from promising 'pilot' technology to live commercial deployments. Calix alone has now over 90 commercial deployed customers and increasing with a dozen new customers every month. They are installing in both low-rise to high-rise MDUs, from towns to the largest cities, Business MTUs and parks and even campus environments such as universities." 74% are in the U.S., 12% in Canada, 9% in AustralAsiaPac and 5% in the rest of the world.

BT: performance "pretty much spot on"
DSM Could Increase Speeds 25-50+ Megabit
DT: No 35b VDSL before 2018, modems not available
AT&T confirmed (unofficially.)
Andrew Ferguson: DSLAMs can be different
Energia Selling Nokia in Japan
Calix Clobbered by Services Cost
Switzerland: We're going; Forget fiber home except in new builds 
Nokia takes XG-FAST to 8 gig in the lab at nbn 
Huawei jumping in to G.faster 
Paris Summit 2017 9 to 11 May will be a great show
100,000 modems sold by Technicolor - running VDSL Australia: 
700,000 "FTTdp homes." Should use but may go VDSL. 
Tens of millions lines predicted 
"Study" predicts $200/line chip price in 2022 !? 

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Our communities are being destroyed by racial tension and we're too polite to talk about it. ... If this is a dialogue that's to begin at AT&T, I feel like it probably ought to start with me" Randall Stephenson, AT&T CEO

Marcelo Claure says mobile costs are “minimal,” allowing Sprint to give away a million mobiles to poor kids. Free in France is selling 50 gigabytes+ for $22; Ambani in India is selling 10 gigabytes for $7.40. An EU estimate of mobile data cost is between 0.4 and 0.8 euro per gigabyte, which is probably high. Finnish consultant Antonios Drossos calculates the marginal cost of a gigabyte is about 0.1 euro.  See Ambani pricing isn't crazy. France, Finland, and Denmark are similar.
    David Small of Verizon estimates the cost per bit will go down 30-40% per year, confirming what I’ve written about the efficiency of carrier aggregation, advanced LTE & MIMO. That’s a drop of about ~50% in two years and ~80% in five years.Mobile speeds have gone up remarkably, putting the lie to the lobbyists’ and politician’s “spectrum crunch.” Back in 2009, the U.S. broadband planners and Glen Campbell of Merrill Lynch convinced me the fears were hogwash. Every year since has seen an increase in mobile speeds.
    The telcos need to buy much less equipment, leading to agony at Ericsson and other suppliers. The Big E has lost half its value in 18 months and is firing thousands. Verizon just fired another 3,000 while AT&T wants to chop 50,000+ jobs in the next few years. 
    Efficiency is great for consumers but many in the industry are living through nightmares.  John Donovan of AT&T says the survival of his $250B company is uncertain. 

This week’s Broadband World Forum in London will have some excitement. I have to skip the show so everyone please keep your ears open and send me the news that isn’t in press releases.

*** @ BBWF Wednesday 19 Oct, Sckipio hopes you will join Peter Bell of BT Openreach; Oliver Lamparter of Swisscom; Werner Heinrich of Adtran; Hubert Mariotte of Orange; Hyung Jin Park of Korea Telecom; David Renehan of Eircom, and our CEO, David Baum for Deployment Strategies and Results (ad)

Headlines without articles yet. News is breaking faster than I can write it.

  • "F-yes for F-cell! Flying F-cell Fantastically Free of wires" Marcus Weldon of Nokia shows off the 8x8 MIMO small cell efficient enough for solar power and small enough for delivery by drone. Great picture. No delivery date.
  • EU’s new policy:  “share spectrum in all the spectrum ranges, particularly in bands below 6 GHz” The telcos will fight very hard, but “use it or share it” is the right policy for more capacity and lower prices. This is huge for spectrum policy.
  • AT&T wireless to the rooftop, below, is in Century’s Minneapolis. T plans to go after Verizon as well. Only a world-class game theoretician can predict how this will play out.
  • Comcast is building a low power wide area network with Semtech. LPWAN is remarkably cheap, which AT&T is acknowledging with an order of magnitude price drop.

Upstream 300 meg+ in 2017 at Comcast
Jorge Salinger is ready as soon as the vendors can deliver.  Casa Systems has already demonstrated 400 megabits upstream and will soon show 600 megabits. They will offer gigabits downstream only in 2016, Daniel Frankel reports, “because 3.1 was not available in upstream. ... I think it’ll be in 2017.” Comcast's $70 gigabit downstream is available today in parts of Chicago, Nashville, and Nashville with a promise to cover over 40M homes by 2018. The upstream is limited to 35 megabits, but that's about to change. 
   I had heard from cable people that they would wait for Full Duplex before upgrading speeds, so this is good news. Full Duplex - sending both upstream and down in the same spectrum - is an active project at CableLabs but likely 3-7 years from volume deployment. Comcast instead will use dedicated spectrum for upstream, possibly eight 6 MHz channels. AT&T is serious about adding 12M "gigabit" homes, using GPON and, and Comcast wants to be able to match the gigabits soon available to about 30% of the U.S.
   But when will they bring it to my house? Much more

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Sprint's mobile bandwidth cost is so low they are giving poor kids 1M free lines and phones
"The new program’s cost to Sprint is minimal" Cecilia Kang quotes NYT. She added  "It doesn’t require additional network upgrades; instead, it would be the equivalent of adding more cars to a highway, the company said." That's an exaggeration, of course. Sprint may have the emptiest network in America, but some of their $3B capital budget is required for the congested areas.
    The cost of bandwidth, even on mobile, is low and getting lower rapidly. A recent EU study found fully loaded cost often one euro/gigabyte or less. Consultant Antonios Drossos emails, "the actual incremental cost of mobile data which depending on the network topology, configurations, vendor pricing etc ranges from €0.05/GB to €0.5/GB."
    Drossos is more likely on target than the EU. Free in France and several in Scandinavia are selling 50 gigabytes+ for $22.  Even if we assume people only use half their allotment, that's 80 cents retail for a profitable product. Ambani in India is selling 10 gigabytes for $7.40.
     David Small of Verizon estimates the cost per bit will go down 30-40% per year, confirming what I’ve written about the efficiency of carrier aggregation, advanced LTE & MIMO. That’s a drop of about half in two to three years and three quarters in about five years.
     Mobile speeds have gone up remarkably, putting the lie to the lobbyists’ and politician’s “spectrum crunch.” Back in 2009, the U.S. broadband planners and Glen Campbell of Merrill Lynch convinced me the fears were hogwash.

AT&T/DirecTV ready to go "Wireless to the Rooftop" + DSL or Ethernet
AT&T needs a tool for both coax and existing telco twisted pair. I believe they are not using at this stage, although it will be a natural choice going forward. AT&T's WTTR looks to be the same as Google's new Webpass division. Companies like Towerstream have been beaming mmWave to rooftops for commercial customers for more than a decade. Hundreds of wireless ISPs rely on mmWave backhaul as do most mobile towers around the world. The technology is old but few have done WTTR for consumers.
     AT&T has several million lines of satellite TV with roof access and wiring throughout the building, a natural for this kind of deployment. Their initial buildings are in Minneapolis. They are also planning Denver, Phoenix, and Seattle, where Century has only limited upgrades. I was surprised T is also discussing prime Verizon FiOS territory: Boston, New Jersey, New York City, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Seattle, and Washington D.C. The headline includes "Outside of Traditional Wireline Service Area."
     For $3,000, you can buy a pair of Ubiquiti radios to carry a gigabit. Siklu, which supplies Google/Webpass, and Ericsson have 5 gigabit units available with low latency. Boris Maysel of Siklu tells me they will have 10 gig in a box next year. 
     T is getting scared as gigabit cable is spreading around the country.  Ed Balcerzak expects WTTR will not just save money but will reach customers quickly. AT&T's current plan, fiber or to 12M by 2020, leaves more than two/thirds on older DSL. Cable should win most of those not soon upgraded.

*** Columbia CITI November 10th 2016 First Impressions for the New Administration and Congress: What's on the Telecom, Internet, and ICT Agenda? Online via Webex 12:00pm-2:00pm. Registration (psa) My suggestion: begin by counting. Obama promised affordable broadband for all Americans in 2008. Since then, prices have gone up by a third. $7B of stimulus reached very few of the unserved. Hillary is making the same promise, without a plan for results.

AT&T, Ericsson public demo of mmWave webcast Oct 18
A chance to watch.  Press releases sometimes are as credible as politician's speeches, so I'm looking forward to watching Tuesday's live demo of a 5G network. At the Texas Wireless Summit, Arunabha Ghosh of AT&T will present Designing Ultra-Dense Networks for 5G at 9:40. At 10 a.m., AT&T will demonstrate their state of the art 5G testing. This will be one of the first public demonstrations of a 5G mmWave system. Webcast by RCR Wireless.
     AT&T & Ericsson are working on phased arrays with ultra-fast beam steering, feedback-based hybrid precoding, multi-user multiple-input/multiple- output, dynamic beam tracking and beam acquisition. Beamforming and related technologies seem may be a breakthrough that extends the reach and throughput of mmWave systems. mmWave Works!, as Ted Rappaport proclaimed a few years ago. The question now is where it will prove financially practical. All those small cells and backhaul can be very expensive.

*** Sckipio and Calix introduce world’s first solution to support DTA over multiple phone lines (twisted pair.) When Sckipio announced the invention of DTA, it was only available on low crosstalk environments such as coax applications or single line scenarios. Now, DTA works on higher density, higher-crosstalk environments. Visit the Sckipio booth (D20)  London, October 18 – 20, 2016 (ad)

KT Giga to 9M Korea homes, Spain, Turkey
Moving from to Wave 2 at "up to 1 gig." has grown beyond home powerline into a legitimate contender for in-building broadband. KT, using Marvell chips, has been offering hundreds of megabits since late 2014. KT reaches several million apartments now and intends to cover 95% of Koreans who can't get fiberhome by the end of 2017. That puts a year or more ahead of
    KT, working with Ubiquoss and Lightworks, has begun exporting the system. They have a deal with Turk Telecom and a  demonstration building in Barcelona near Mobile World Congress. Chano Gomez of Marvell believes Wave 2 can match today's chips. I haven't seen test data from an independent source.

*** Silicon Harlem 3rd Annual Next Gen Tech and Media Conference
Friday October 21 MIST 46 W. 116th St. FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel, Jennifer Hensley of LinkNYC, Alvin Bowles of Facebook, and two dozen more presenters. Nona Hendryx will both present and perform - but she ain’t gonna play Sun City. (psa) Clayton Banks and Bruce Lincoln have built a thriving community. Come join. News 

A dozen telcos have deployed 10's of thousands of lines. It works. 

Centurylink: works as promised
Curtis Frankenfeld tells me produced "No disappointments on performance. The results in the field on real cable approach the lab results The results using coax were flawless, with slightly better performance than twisted pair. The installers only had to do a small amount of repair, splitter removal and similar."

*** HFR and Sckipio Announce World’s First 24-Port DPU
Sckipio Technologies and South Korean network infrastructure equipment maker, HFR, Inc. announce the world’s first distribution point unit (DPU) that supports up to 24 subscribers in a single DPU. Visit the Sckipio booth (D20)  London, October 18 – 20, 2016 (ad) amendments 2 & 3 for more than a gigabit
Longer reach, reverse power, downloaded upgrades for the customer equipment, DTA over coax, and a dozen other improvements. At an ITU SG-15 meeting in Geneva, Amendments one and two were approved. Amendment three was consented but very few changes are likely before final approval. The major chip vendors, Broadcom and Sckipio, are already hard at work. The carriers are hoping for equipment in the second half of 2017.
     BT needs longer reach. was designed for 50-200 meters but existing cabinets are often 350 meters away or more. The new standard increases the maximum transmit power up to +8 dBm, with a practical goal of 300 megabits 300 meters. AT&T has been vocal they want a true gigabit to compete with cable, not "up to a gigabit."

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24 Port DPU shipping from Sckipio, HFR
Until now, no one made a DPU with more than 16 ports. Curtis Frankenfeld of Century recently told me, "I would like to support a larger vectoring group than the current 16 ports." For now, Century is only using in smaller buildings. Many buildings have far more than 16 apartments, with wires in the same bundle.
   HFR of Korea has the first 24 port DPU and a giant customer ready to go. Sckipio is first with chips designed to work with VDSL 30a, the faster form of VDSL used in Japan and Korea. $15B SK Telecom is Korea's largest wireless carrier and #2 in fixed. They are targeting the 9M apartments in Korea served with VDSL and copper LAN, most running at 100 megabits. Korea Telecom is actively deploying GIGA Wire, their version of, and intends to upgrade 95% of those units by the end of 2017.  Japan is similar; millions of their "fiber" lines are fiber to the basement + VDSL.

Nokia 8 port
The headline is the whole story. Two North American telcos have told me they need a smaller unit. They don't want to pay for 16 ports when they only need 4 or 5. Nokia has announced one. The unit is shipping. Price is undisclosed, which means the price is based on how hard you negotiate and how much Nokia wants your business. 
     I would love to add to this report that Nokia's new gear supports longer loop lengths, as they claim below. Unfortunately, they don't say longer than what, provide an estimate of rate/reach, or release test data.

Single port The fiber extender
Sckipio's single port is an ideal solution if you need hundreds of megabits a few hundred meters from fiber and digging to extend it is too expensive. A telco engineer tells me that is a common situation. It's easy to imagine a small radio station with a dozen people on staff across a highway from fiber, or three homes about 200 meters beyond a telco GPON network. 
     I live about 50 meters from Columbia's Engineering School, with probably a terabit of connectivity. Verizon can't deliver more than 6 megabits to the fifty apartments in my building (Columbia-owned) or the ~800 more within 150 meters. If you could find a simple wire run from Columbia and connect that copper line to a unit in the basement, everyone in the building could have several hundred megabits 95+% of the time.

*** Jeff Pulver (@JeffPulver) will host #140conf/State of Now Los Angeles  November 14th. (ad) Jeff created the now-legendary VON conferences. Guaranteed no long boring speeches. Folks who define the tTittersphere can do fine in under ten minutes. 

Eric Small of AT&T: is essential.
WTTR + for coax. In an interview with Sean Buckley, Small said “The other thing that we have separately talked about is we’re exploring the use of That technology can work over coax or twisted pair so that’s an essential companion way to deliver service where a property does not have Cat 5 or Cat 6.” DirecTV has millions of lines with an antenna on the roof and either coax or ethernet cable throughout the building. 
     They want to use for 500 megabits or more but continue to be coy about whether they will turn their trials into volume deployment.

*** Sckipio Technologies, the leader in, announces the first single-port DPU design. The solution acts like virtual fibre by extending GPON networks with twisted pair or coax. A very thin management layer allows operators to keep their existing GPON management layer. Sckipio makes it effortless to add to any GPON network. Visit the Sckipio booth (D20)  London, October 18 – 20, 2016 (ad)

BT delays rollout 6-9 months to 2H 2017
Pioneers get arrows in their back and schedules do slip. 
BT had originally promised to start their 10M home rollout late this year or early next. They are expanding the trials to 140,000 homes.  BT wants 48 or 96 ports while today's tech only supports 16-24 ports. They also want the higher power and longer reach of the Amendment 2/3 chips. 
    The original plan, promised by CEO Gavin Patterson, would go to local distribution points for speeds generally 500+ megabits. Then the bean counters jumped in and insisted on using the existing cabinets, Trevor Linney and a strong team of BT engineers did the research to go 300 meters rather than 100 meters, now in the standard. I'm going to call the downstream speed 200+ megabits, rather than the "up to 330" in the BT pr. It's time to use actual speeds that most users can achieve.

Nokia & Huawei win BT's (delayed) G.fast
BT decides to stick with the big guys. Alcatel-Nokia and Huawei have been #1 & #2 in DSL for a decade, both with excellent products. They both jumped in early to and their gear works well. They've now won the next stage of BT's 10M home servable offering, another 100,000 homes in the next six months.  BT's Seeley is hopeful they will get production amendment 2/3 chips, but their main supplier Broadcom is not committed to delivering the chips so soon. Ray Le Maistre, a first rate British reporter, believes Adtran has a chance to get back in at the next stage of DSLAM procurement. BT has surprisingly few choices. The vendor community has shrunk drastically. I know only four DSLAM makers and two chip vendor likely to be ready to serve a customer like BT.

To come: Technicolor ships 100,000 modems; first interop from UNH/Broadband Forum; 11M subs/year in 2021 predicted by nbn/Ovum; BBWF: How well will chips talk to each other?; 700,000 FTTdp Australia; Graz 50.000; DTA over phone lines