Cable operators aren't running scared from the 1 Gbps threat made by Google Fiber (NASDAQ: GOOG) and a growing base of telcos like AT&T (NYSE: T) and CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL), but rather are fighting back with the DOCSIS 3.1 standard, one that Cable Labs says will support 1 Gbps over their existing hybrid fiber coax networks. Read more here.
The cable industry is rushing headlong into the 1 Gbps future. Starting early next year, cable operators including Comcast and others are expected to begin rolling out the new DOCSIS 3.1 standard for their HFC cable networks. The technology will allow cable operators to increase the Internet speeds they can provide to customers from around 300 Mbps today to 1 Gbps and higher.
CableLabs, the nonprofit research and development consortium for cable operators, makes no secret of why it started work on DOCSIS 3.1: "Gigabit speeds were something very important" to the cable industry, explained Wayne Surdam, CableLabs' vice president of communications. DOCSIS 3.1 "ends up being a very effective way of delivering a high level of service using the [cable operator's] existing HFC plant." Indeed, DOCSIS 3.1 is the cable industry's answer to a range of competitive threats and market trends.
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