Cable One makes its case for DOCSIS 4.0 upgrades

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Though fiber upgrades and overlays have grow to be more and more in style with some cable operators within the US and Europe, Cable One believes that DOCSIS 4.0 is the most effective path to take for economics and efficiency.

Cable One makes use of fiber for greenfield deployments and market expansions, however inside monetary research discovered that overbuilding present hybrid fiber/coax (HFC) plant with fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) presents a a lot totally different story.

“The web of it’s that overbuilding ourselves with fiber is three to 6 instances as costly as merely going to a DOCSIS 4.0 improve. And it offers us the identical relative efficiency,” Ken Johnson, Cable One’s SVP of expertise providers, stated Thursday on the firm’s first-ever investor day. “The rationale for that’s the delta within the preliminary capital funding for the fiber overbuild is so excessive that ongoing operational financial savings cannot offset it.”

Cable One provides gigabit providers on the overwhelming majority of its DOCSIS 3.1 community as we speak. Upgrading to DOCSIS 4.0 will allow the corporate to ship multi-gigabit symmetrical broadband service together with enhanced safety and low-latency capabilities.

Cable One has already sketched out some particulars on its plans for DOCSIS 4.0, asserting final November that it’ll pursue the Prolonged Spectrum DOCSIS (ESD) configuration somewhat than the Full Duplex DOCSIS (FDX) possibility that Comcast is pursuing. The ESD taste of DOCSIS 4.0 envisions upgrading the HFC plant to 1.8GHz whereas maintaining upstream and downstream visitors working in a separate, devoted spectrum.

Cable One can also be pushing forward with an IPTV transition that can allow the corporate to reclaim the spectrum for broadband providers that as we speak is getting used to ship QAM-based digital providers. Johnson estimates that conventional QAM video takes up about half of the HFC plant’s capability.

In line with a slide offered as we speak on Cable One’s roadmap, the corporate plans to begin launching DOCSIS 4.0 in late 2022 and into 2023.

“We’ll proceed to push fiber deeper in our community as we carry out system upgrades. However we don’t see the necessity to overbuild ourselves with fiber to be aggressive with the options that fiber brings,” Johnson stated. “Now we have a transparent roadmap outlining the detailed steps essential to execute on this dedication of manufacturing multi-gig, highly-reliable, symmetrical, low-latency providers to the house.”

FWA has its place

Johnson stated that Cable One isn’t overly involved concerning the emergence of competitors from mounted wi-fi entry (FWA) service suppliers. “Because of limitations in spectrum availably and expertise, we don’t really feel that cell or mounted wi-fi networks signify a major risk to our enterprise,” he stated. “They can’t scale as much as meet the extent of demand required by rising consumption.”

However that does not imply Cable One sees zero alternative for FWA expertise. It has invested in two mounted wi-fi ISPs – Wisper Web and NextLink – to supply a cost-effective technique to serve much less dense areas which are near its wireline footprint.

“Mounted wi-fi appeared like a logical place to go together with that,” Steven Cochran, Cable One’s CFO, stated. “We do not suppose it is a fantastic expertise to compete head-to-head with a Gig service, however we predict it is an unbelievably economical expertise as we transfer outdoors [Cable One’s footprint].”

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— Jeff Baumgartner, Senior Editor, Gentle Studying


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