DOCSIS 3.1: offering fibre speeds for cable customers

Dennis Steiger

Dennis Steiger

A new technology standard that promises to deliver gigabit speeds is planned to be rolled out across Australia from 2017, NBN Co announced today.

NBN Co is set to become one of the first telecommunications companies in the world to introduce the high-speed cable technology, known as Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification (DOCSIS) 3.1.

DOCSIS 3.1 supports download speeds of up to 10Gbps and up to 1Gbps upstream and by delivering data more efficiently can deliver up to 50% more data than is possible over current cable networks. Field trials of the technology will launch in the United States later this year.

More than three million homes and businesses in Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide, Sydney and the Gold Coast are earmarked to receive the National Broadband Network over the Hybrid Fibre Coaxial (HFC) cables that currently deliver broadband and pay-TV services to Telstra and Optus customers.

In deals struck last December, NBN Co will progressively take ownership of these cables and incorporate them into the National Broadband Network.

“NBN will utilise a network that is already deployed across millions of homes and businesses in Australia,” said Dennis Steiger, NBN Co’s Chief Technology Officer, at Cable Congress 2015 in Brussels. “By re-architecting the ratio of homes to a node and the use of the latest technology underpinning DOCSIS 3.1, Australia’s HFC network will become one of the most state-of-the-art technologies used to deploy broadband services.”

Steiger added that the new technology has the potential to offer speeds equivalent to what’s on offer by full fibre to the premises and up to 100 times faster (up to 10Gbps) than what is currently provided by today’s HFC network.


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