Intel, Arris Working on Firmware Fix for SB6190 Modem

Arris said it is working with Intel on a firmware fix for the SURFboard SB6190, a DOCSIS 3.0 cable modem with Intel’s Puma 6 chip, that has been the subject of complaints about jitter and latency.

DSL Reports shed light on the issue on Tuesday, as a Cox Communications customer reported that the model was experiencing connectivity issues and latency spikes.

"ARRIS has been working actively with Intel to address the issue, which resulted in some SURFboard® SB6190 users reporting latency concerns. We plan to quickly issue Intel’s firmware updates to resolve any latency. We remain committed to providing the best broadband experience for all users of ARRIS devices and regret any inconvenience this issue caused," Arris said in a statement. 

UPDATE: A person posting to the DSL Reports message board said a beta of the firmware update, a version called 9.1.X,  is starting to be distributed. CableLabs also stressed to DSL Reports that its role is to test for interoperability, as performance of the devcies falls outside its jurisdiction. 

The SB6190 is a model on the higher end of the DOCSIS 3.0 product spectrum, as it can bond up to 32 downstream channels (enough to support bursts up to 1.4 Gbps), and eight upstream channels.

It’s not clear if the issue is isolated to this one Arris model with the Puma 6, or if others with the chip are running into the same issue. However, DSL Reports said consumers on its forum have lodged similar complaints about other makes and models that use the Intel chip.

Intel, which pairs its DOCSIS chips with silicon from MaxLinear, competes in the sector with Broadcom.

Earlier this week, Hitron announced that its Coda-45 modem is first with Intel’s Puma 7’s chip to obtain CableLabs certification for DOCSIS 3.1  D3.1 models from several other vendors, including Humax, Arris, Askey, CastleNet, Netgear, Sagemcom, Technicolor, and Ubee Interactive have also achieved that distinction on products powered by Broadcom silicon.