Move Over, CMTS: Here Comes DMTS

Arris Group Inc. is introducing a digital-multimedia-termination system (DMTS), a souped-up cable-modem-termination system that can deliver MPEG-2 (Moving Picture Expert Group) video, Digital Video Broadcast-C-based digital video and Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification-based Internet-protocol digital-multimedia content.

The new product reflects the beginning of the blending of IP and MPEG content, traditionally housed and delivered in separate cable infrastructures.

The "Q5 DMTS" combines Arris' quadrature-amplitude-modulation and DOCSIS and Euro-DOCSIS 2.0 CMTS technologies with MPEG and DVB video for the delivery of digital-video broadcast, video-on-demand, IP multicast, IP Unitcast and DOCSIS data content to a variety of MPEG-2 and IP set-tops used by broadband providers in the United States and Europe.

"Digital-multimedia delivery is rapidly moving into a phase where proprietary video-delivery architectures must seamlessly operate in parallel with emerging IP-multimedia architectures, such as those based upon the DOCSIS set-top gateway and PacketCable multimedia specifications," said Jim Lakin, president of Arris Broadband, in a prepared statement.

Arris said cable operators can lower capital costs by leveraging existing IP-transport and switching resources at headends and hubs. The integrated downstream multiplexer and block-converted QAM channels provide a migration path for wideband high-speed-data applications, Arris said, which can demand as much as 38 megabits in a single downstream channel.

Arris said the Q5 is a two-rack unit device with four gigabit-Ethernet ports and a flexible mix of up to six hybrid fiber-coaxial transport modules.

The DMTS can support any combination of 8-48 independently provisioned MPEG-transport downstream channels in four block-converted channel groupings, as well as up to 24 DOCSIS 2.0 downstream channels, 12 2.0 upstream channels and a next-generation "Phy-less" 24 upstream CMTS channels with a gigabit-Ethernet downstream interface.

The Q5 also allows for DOCSIS set-top gateway support, and it has the capacity to deliver 575 simultaneous constant-bit-rate video streams to MPEG-2 set-tops.

Arris said the DMTS will be available for third-quarter trials, with product shipments slated for year-end.