“Progress in Development Broadband Networks: Wired Access” Technologies, Markets and Applications
This report updates the status on wired broadband access technologies, their markets, applications and industries.
Wired broadband access technologies are playing an important role in today networks. However, until recently, technical and economic problems with such access did not allow effective use of a broadband pipe from a core to a subscriber side, minimizing a value of broadband communications.
The problems have been known for a long time, but absence of a cost-effective technology in the distribution plant prevented making any practical improvements. The specifics of access, such as the necessity to create highly distributed infrastructure and the price to support access service always contradicted each other. The situation changed with appearance Passive Optical Networks (PONs), their various modifications and progress in architecting of high-speed DSL, such as vectoring DSL.
The goal of this report is to address current and near-term advances in wired broadband access networks that are transforming them into broadband pipes with characteristics similar to characteristics of the core networks. Particular, the report concentrates on the analysis technologies and markets for the following access architectures:
Passive Optical Networks – standardized or planning to be standardized by the IEEE and ITU-FSAN. Evolving PONs will allow transmission up to 100 Gb/s (shared).
New generations DSL – in the development and standardization by the ITU and the industry, including vectoring and G.fast. The technology may support short reaches connectivity on the existing copper structures with speeds near 1 Gb/s (non-shared).
RFoG – technology that allows efficient use of fiber combined with a short coaxial path to the user, allowing to reach gigabit per second speed and improving the economics of broadband access. Note that cable accounts for 60% of the U.S. fixed broadband market.
The report shows that the copper infrastructure continues to play an important role for connecting last hundreds meters from/to a subscriber equipment (with the rest of network). Advanced gigabit speed access technologies, such as DSL (G.fast, VDSL2-vec), are key in creating a homogenous and cost efficient core-access infrastructure. For example, in 2017, AT&T has begun rolling out G.fast-based services in 22 metro markets across the United States, signaling the service provider’s desire to extend higher speed wireline broadband services in premises where it can’t make a business case for all fiber.
PONs provide cost-efficient connectivity of the core with subscriber’s equipment, supporting required by users characteristics, such as speed of transmission and other. Currently, service providers have three major next-generation FSAN PON paths: 10G-PON, XGS-PON and NG-PON2. Verizon, for example, plans to move directly to NG-PON2.
The IEEE NG-EPON standard 802.3ca, which promises the 100 Gb/s speed, planned to be finalized in 2018.
The report also stresses an important trend in the broadband wired access: utilization of multi-functional platforms that allow flexibility and cost efficiency to serve a diversified group of users required different technologies.
The standardization processes are analyzed in details. Marketing statistics have been developed (2017-2021). The report also presents detailed surveys of companies that are working in the related industries and their products portfolios. Attachments contain the survey of recently approved patents related to the report subject.
The report is written for a wide audience of technical, managerial and sales staff involved in the development wired broadband access networks.