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Juniper, Gainspeed Shed Light On Virtual CCAP Plan

Juniper Networks and Gainspeed, the startup formed by DOCSIS pioneer Shlomo Rakib, fleshed out earlier disclosed plans to develop a virtualized  form of the Converged Cable Access Platform (CCAP), a super-dense architecture that will run all services under the same roof and combine the functions of the edge QAM and the cable modem termination system.

Juniper, whose  VC arm headed up a $10 million “B” round in Gainspeed late last year, said it will integrate Gainspeed’s vCCAP technology with  its MX Series 3D Universal Edge Routers and EX Series Switches.

Those details emerge more than a month after Gainspeed identified four initial vendors that it will partner with on the development of an interoperable virtual CCAP ecosystem. In addition to Juniper, Gainspeed is also working with CommScope, Netgear and JDSU to help it create an interoperable ecosystem. CableLabs, which handles interoperability specs for the cable industry, has initiated a project that will investigate a vCCAP, with a technical report expected to come out by the second half of the year.

Gainspeed and Juniper said one aim of the architecture, which is more distributed than first wave of more centralized, monolithic CCAP-pointing products, is to help operators better automate and scale their edge/access network infrastructure while also reducing costs.

The resulting vCCAP architecture isn’t rolled out yet, but the vendors claim that their approach can reduce total cost of capacity by as much as 67% by reducing power, space and cooling constraints on existing facilities and by eliminating the “physical” CMTS.

And the approach appears to be gathering some interest among the operator community.

"We are excited to see innovation in our DOCSIS edge and pleased to see a networking partner like Juniper working with an innovative company like Gainspeed to help bring this forward,”  Sam Chernak, SVP of network architecture at Comcast, said in a statement.

"The rapid transition to IP-based video services has turned the cable industry on its head. Cost effectively delivering new IP-based services will require new and innovative approaches. We're excited to be working with Juniper Networks and Gainspeed. Their new Virtual CCAP solution promises to revolutionize the network and enable an accelerated migration to IP,” added WideOpenWest chief technology officer Cash Hagen.