IBC 2015: Vendors Trot Out DOCSIS 3.1 Wares

Chip and gateway makers at this week’s IBC show in Amsterdam are showing off a new line of gear based on DOCSIS 3.1, the emerging multi-gigabit platform for HFC networks.

DOCSIS 3.1 trials and deployments are expected to start late this year and begin to ramp up in 2016. CableLabs has opened up certification testing for DOCSIS 3.1-based products. 

-Broadcom unveiled trio of DOCSIS 3.1-based devices for the Converged Cable Access Platform (CCAP), a high-density system that combines the functions of the cable modem termination system and the edge QAM./

Broadcom said those products – the BCM3047, BCM31442 and BCM3222 -- enable CCAP vendors to build and deploy DOCSIS 3.1-compliant equipment. Early adopters of Broadcom's DOCSIS 3.1 technology include cable operators such as Comcast and Liberty Global, and CCAP equipment suppliers such as Arris and Harmonic, Broadcom said.

"Today's new CCAP infrastructure devices, combined with the BCM3390 cable modem platform, provide a complete DOCSIS 3.1-based silicon solution with advanced capabilities that effectively compete with speeds offered by fiber deployments,” said Dan Marotta, EVP and  GM of Broadcom’s Broadband & Connectivity Group, in a statement.

"End-to-end DOCSIS 3.1 technology, in both cable infrastructure and cable modems, is critical for subscribers to receive Gigabit speeds in the home," added Balan Nair, Liberty Global’s EVP and CTO. "DOCSIS 3.1 is making it possible for Liberty Global to deliver enhanced services to consumers later this year."

The BCM3047 is a single-chip transmitter that can enable transmission up to 1.2 GHz on the cable plant; the BCM31442 Receiver is a burst receiver built on D3.1 specs that can support up to 300 MHz of upstream spectrum; and the BCM3222 MAC device is capable of supporting up to 25 Gbps, Broadcom said, noting that all three chips are currently sampling.

-Intel will be showing off the Puma 7 systems-on-chip, which is built on the company’s 14nm process technology. The platform, Intel said, will also integrate support for 4x4 802.11ac WiFi. Arris is evidently one of its early D3.1 CPE partners.

“We are continually evolving our advanced HFC network to ensure that our customers have the best, fastest high-speed Internet service available. DOCSIS 3.1 is a pillar of that evolution and fundamental to our plan to offer new gigabit speed tiers to our customers,” said Tony Werner, executive vice president and CTO at Comcast, in a statement. We are excited about Intel’s use of its latest generation 14nm process technology to drive better energy efficiency and enable compelling new form factors for cable broadband gateways.”

-Sagemcom introduced the F@st 3890, a DOCSIS 3.1-based media gateway equipped with 4x4 MU-MIMO 802.11ac WiFi. Sagemcom’s entry, like other early D3.1 modem entrants, will be hybrids that can support both DOCSIS 3.1 and DOCSIS 3.0-based traffic. The device also bakes in SWAN, the French supplier’s modular software suite for apps and services.

-And there’s some news on the DOCSIS 3.0 front. Celeno Communications has teamed with STMicroelectronics on a D3.0 reference design that integrates Celeno’s WiFi 802.11ac and 802.11n chips with ST’s Alicante CableLabs-certified chipset.