Mediacom Selects CommScope as Primary Tech Vendor as It Switches Network to Distributed Access Architecture

Logo of cable operator Mediacom Communications on a cellphone screen
(Image credit: Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

CommScope has announced a key customer win as it tries to maintain its position as the top cable technology vendor amid the cable industry’s “10G” network tech transition.

Hickory, North Carolina-based CommScope will be the primary tech vendor for the nation’s fifth-largest cable operator, Mediacom Communications, as it transitions its network to a virtualized Distributed Access Architecture (DAA) configuration.

In engineering-speak, CommScope will supply Blooming Grove, New York-based Mediacom, which serves around 1.47 million broadband customers, with its RD2322 RxD, “operating as a Remote MACPHY Device in the OM4120 Optical Node, configured with a high-split (204 MHz) upstream.”

CommScope and Mediacom have already collaborated on a successful trial in Ames, Iowa, of the vendor’s Remote PHY solutions, which featured CommScope products including the E6000 Converged Cable Access Platform (CCAP) Core, OM6000 node, Remote PHY Device (RPD) and Video Unified Edge (VUE).

The top cable operators, including Comcast and Charter Communications, have already begun the process of upgrading their 1 gigabit-per-second-capable DOCSIS 3.1 networks to the new Full Duplex DOCSIS 4.0 standard, which will provide symmetrical multi-Gbps speeds both upstream and downstream. 

Simultaneously, they’re virtualizing expensive, power-intensive proprietary cable-network hardware, migrating these devices’ functions to software running on commodity x86 servers, under the catchall heading DAA. (The cable industry has thrown both FDX DOCSIS 4.0 and DAA into an even broader bucket it calls 10G.)

Insurgent vendors including Harmonic have targeted CommScope's dominant market share in cable tech with new DAA software solutions. But the Mediacom win seems to show that CommScope is at least holding its own. Neither CommScope nor Mediacom disclosed how much money is involved in the commitment. 

“CommScope’s flexible solutions have allowed us to take advantage of our installed base of nodes, as well as the RD2322 RxD's ability to operate as a Remote MACPHY device, to make a smooth and efficient transition to our network of the future,” Mediacom chief technology officer JR Walden said in a statement. 

Added Guy Sucharczuk, senior VP and general manager of Access Network Solutions for CommScope, “This is a significant step forward for Mediacom's network, and it's a showcase for how CommScope is equipping the world’s leading operators for the 10G future.” ■

Daniel Frankel is the managing editor of Next TV, an internet publishing vertical focused on the business of video streaming. A Los Angeles-based writer and editor who has covered the media and technology industries for more than two decades, Daniel has worked on staff for publications including E! Online, Electronic Media, Mediaweek, Variety, paidContent and GigaOm. You can start living a healthier life with greater wealth and prosperity by following Daniel on Twitter today!