Usage: The ISP described itself as a “facilities-based” provider, because it owned and operated the server array that provided connectivity and firewall protection.
Usage: The big topic of debate among FCC watchers in 2005 was whether it would tackle a re-write of the ’96 Telecom Act.
Usage: Quality materials and craftsmanship matters in the correct installation of the F-connector, whether in the plant, or in someone’s house – which makes customer-installed F connectors a frequent source of upstream noise problems.
Usage: When more bandwidth is needed by connected homes, fiber nodes can be “split” – meaning more transmitters and receivers are attached to the dark glass. A serving area is comprised of four or more 500-home fiber nodes.
1) Optical fiber needed to be wrapped in a cladding (still in use today), so that light wouldn’t disappear when traveling.
2) Impurity-free glass for the optical cables made light go much farther – upwards of 30 miles, these days, for that same 10 percent of remaining light.
Optical fibers are made of glass, plastic, or plastic-clad glass, and are smaller in diameter than a human hair. They’re flexible and bendable, much like monofilament fishing line. Fibers are packaged together in bundles, encased in a flexible tube. Because they’re so tiny, the process of attaching two fibers – known as splicing – is an intricate and craft-sensitive process that requires specialized equipment. On either end of a fiber bundle is a light source, and a light receiver.
Usage: Fiber optics is the “F” in “HFC.”
While FTTx isn’t new, it is definitely in vogue again, driven by the renewed appetite for video by telephone companies. Three big telephone companies made big “fiber to the” announcements in 2004: SBC Communications and BellSouth said they’ll stop at the curb; Verizon said it’ll go all the way to the side of the house.
Verizon’s plan emerged in July of 2004, when the telco earmarked portions of California, Florida and Texas for a fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) deployment. Since then, the telco announced plans to take its FTTP work everywhere it can.
A few months later, SBC expressed plans to become “the number-two video provider” to 18 million homes in its footprint, within three years. By “curb,” SBC means within 3,000 to 5,000 feet of connected homes, with 20-25 Mbps of downstream/forward bandwidth. They figure it’ll cost between $500-$600 per connected home in the early years, until scale kicks in with a price tag in the $300-$450 range. That includes set-tops, in-home wiring, and truck rolls. Total, SBC is estimating to spend $4 bil. for implementation, and another billion on “success-based” capital (money that is spent only when a revenue stream is created).
Verizon’s work is probably the closest to cable’s HFC, because it reserves a full wavelength (color of light) to carry 860 MHz worth of cable services. That means Verizon’s bill of materials for its big project looks a lot like the lists cable operators made during their last big upgrade push.
Cable, of course, also uses a “fiber-to-the” methodology. They just don’t call it that. They call it “HFC,” for hybrid fiber-coax. By comparison, cable’s HFC networks are roughly equivalent to “fiber to 500 Verizon-premises,” or “fiber-to-20-SBC-curbs.”
Usage: Charter Communications and Samsung Electronics are working on a sort of “smart firewire” arrangement, to make two-way TVs out of one-way TVs.
Usage: Advanced digital set-tops generally contain at least 8 MBytes of flash memory.
Usage: A milestone of the 2005 Consumer Electronics Show was a 102-inch flat panel display made by Samsung – just for the sake of being biggest.
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