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CableLabs Stamps Another Batch of DOCSIS 3.1 Devices

A set of modems and gateways from Arris, Kaon Media and Technicolor passed the DOCSIS 3.1 test at CableLabs following certification wave 121.

Certification means those modems are interoperable with DOCSIS network gear, and is a requirement for retail distribution. Most cable operators also require DOCSIS certification on modems and gateways they distribute themselves.

This round, Arris got a passing grade for the Touchstone TG3452 a DOCSIS 3.1-powered gateway that supports high-speed internet and home telephony and has an integrated four-port gigabit router and dual-band 802.11n and 802.11ac Wave2 WiFi access point, plus a battery backup. It also bakes in MoCA 2.0 for high-speed networking over home coax lines.

Arris’s model also supports RDK-B, the broadband flavor of the Reference Design Kit, the preintegrated software stack for set-tops and gateways managed by Comcast, Liberty Global and Charter Communications.

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Arris hinted at the new model during its Q3 earnings call. Larry Robinson, president of Arris’s CPE division, noted that the company had started deployments on a new DOCSIS 3.1 voice modem with a key, but unnamed U.S. cable operator. Comcast, which has been aggressive with D3.1, is Arris’s largest customer.

Update: A reader inquired about which vendor is supplying the silicon in Arris's new model, pointing to recent complaints about the performance of DOCSIS 3.0 cable modem products with Intel Puma 6 made by suppliers that included Arris and Netgear that has since been dismissed. Arris declined to identify the chipmaker for the new TG3452, adding that it "works with a variety of partners" and that the company typically does not "disclose our technology providers or our plans or agreements with them." Arris also did not disclose the chipmaker for its first D3.1 model, a retail device called the SB8200, though it's believed to be powered by Broadcom silicon. However, this data sheet on the model in question, which notes the TG3452's use of a "Multi Processor Technology with ARM and ATOM based Application Processor," suggests that it is using Intel's new D3.1-powered Puma 7 chipset, the reader added.  

CableLabs also stamped the VM3000G telephony D3.1 gateway from Kaon Media, a supplier based in South Korea. That device also embeds dual-band 802.11ac WiFi, four gigabit Ethernet ports, two phone ports, and an option for MoCA 2.0.

CableLabs documents show that Technicolor won certification for a model called the CGA4131. As of Friday morning, the vendor had yet to respond to a request for more details about that model.

The latest round of D3.1 certifications arrive as several cable operators, including Comcast, RCN, Mediacom Communications, expand their deployment of the technology, which currently brings gigabit speeds to the downstream. Liberty Global and Charter Communications are among major MSOs that have D3.1 in their near-term plans.

Arris and Technicolor have also gained D3.1 certifications on other products, as have Hitron, Humax, Askey, CastleNet, Netgear, Sagemcom, Technicolor, and Ubee Interactive.