Cable-Tec Expo To Spotlight DOCSIS 3.1

The Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE) and CableLabs say they will offer a “360-degree view” of DOCSIS 3.1 during an event that will precede this fall’s Cable-Tec Expo at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta.

The DOCSIS 3.1 Symposium, set to run from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. ET on Monday, Oct. 21, will focus on key technical elements that will make up the budding CableLabs platform, which is poised to support downstream speeds up to 10 Gbps and upstream capacities of more than 1  Gbps.

Engineering topics on tap for the DOCSIS 3.1 event include the downstream physical layer, the downstream convergence layer, the upstream physical layer, upstream framing onto the PHY, and the MAC layer. The symposium will also address network preparedness and an “overview of MSOs’ deployment plans.”

This year’s symposium follows a tag-team effort by CableLabs and SCTE at last fall’s Cable-Tec Expo in Orlando, which featured a panel discussion that provided the first public glimpse of the aims and goals of DOCSIS 3.1. At the time, the SCTE also announced the formation of a special working group within the Society’s standards program  tasked with developing best practices and requirements to prepare cable networks for DOCSIS 3.1.

“The seamless rollout of DOCSIS 3.1 services will play an important role in the deployment of next generation services,” said Ralph Brown, CTO of CableLabs and a member of the SCTE Board of Directors, in a statement. “Our partnership with SCTE is designed to provide the cable technical workforce with enhanced understanding of the specification early on in order to accelerate its deployment and maximize its value to the industry.”

“We’ve created this symposium with an eye toward building on that success—combining subject matter experts and increased time availability to provide an optimal learning environment at Expo,” added SCTE SVP of engineering and chief technology officer Daniel Howard.

CableLabs is expected to complete the DOCSIS 3.1 specs before the end of the year.  During a technology panel at The Cable Show in Washington, D.C. earlier this month, Comcast EVP and CTO Tony Werner said he expects DOCSIS 3.1 trials to start in 2014, with commercially-ready 3.1 products becoming available by late 2014 or early 2015.

Also at the show, CableLabs demonstrated downstream speeds of 6 Gbps using pre-production hardware from Broadcom that uses a new, more efficient channelization scheme that’s being baked into the DOCSIS 3.1 specs.

SCTE Cable-Tec Expo is set for Oct. 21-24. SCTE said it plans to run a separate, concurrent pre-event symposium – “Creating the Cable Generalist” – on Monday, Oct. 21.