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Zoom! Kabel Deutschland Hits 4.7 Gbps In Field Trial Of Arris DOCSIS Gear

In a demo staged to flex the muscles of cable's network architecture, Kabel Deutschland announced it has successfully field-tested DOCSIS 3.0 equipment from Arris Group delivering an aggregate of 4.7 Gigabits per second.

KD, Germany's largest cable operator, used a EuroDOCSIS 3.0-based Arris C4 cable modem termination system and 12 of the vendor's Touchstone CM820S cable modems -- each accessing eight bonded 8 MHz channels -- to deliver 4.7 Gbps aggregated data throughput in the downstream.

With a pipe that huge, a feature-length movie can be downloaded in 8 seconds. But such speeds far exceed any real-world demand from a single premises -- indeed, it's faster than a standard PC or cable modem can even process today, KD chief technology officer Lorenz Glatz noted.

However, the 4.7 Gbps test shows that "today's broadband cable network is already a high-performance and sustainable infrastructure offering huge untapped potential," Glatz said in a statement. "Our field test with Arris... underlines the unique selling proposition of our cable network as the only extensive ultra-fast network in the German broadband market."

The MSO conducted the tests on a live cable network at a school in the city of Schwerin, Germany, where KD recently upgraded the cable plant to 862 MHz. The 4.7 Gbps field test was based on the use of currently available standards, technology and hardware.

"This demonstrates that today's [hybrid fiber-coax] plant has the capacity to deliver a full IP video load, and that the entire HFC plant can be converted into one or more enormous pipes to meet future consumer bandwidth demands, using current technology and networks," Tom Cloonan, CTO of Arris's network solutions group. "We congratulate Kabel Deutschland on pushing through existing barriers to deliver their customers the services of tomorrow, today."

The EuroDOCSIS specification uses the 8 MHz channel-spacing convention used by European operators, whereas DOCSIS employs the 6 MHz scheme used in North America and other regions.

Kabel Deutschland has been an Arris CMTS customer since 2007. In 2010, the operator topped 1 Gbps in a DOCSIS 3.0 field trial with Cisco Systems gear.

Kabel Deutschland operates cable networks in 13 German federal states and serves approximately 8.7 million households. 

At the 2011 Cable Show in Chicago, Arris set up a demo of a CMTS delivering 4.5 Gbps downstream and 575 Mbps upstream, using 16 DOCSIS 3.0 modems. Also at the show, Comcast demonstrated a 1 Gbps connection over live HFC plant.