Broadband White Paper - Bandwidth, Key Weapon in Cable-Telco Broadband Battle for Subscribers
Bandwidth Is a Key Weapon in the Cable-Telco Broadband Battle for Subscribers
By Greg Zancewicz, Director, Broadband Marketing, Microtune®, Inc.
Cable systems are using leading-edge techniques and next-generation tuners to satisfy consumers' growing hunger for bandwidth.
For years, cable service operators enjoyed excess network capacity and could rest easily. They had ample bandwidth to handle data and video services, and had no need to make serious upgrades to their systems, customer premise equipment (CPE), or plants. Then, telcos upped the ante and made broadband to the home, especially in terms of fiber to the home (FTTH), more competitive. The cable services industry responded by accelerating the advancement of its cornerstone specification, Data-over-Cable-Service-Interface-Specification (DOCSIS®), to deliver a new version, DOCSIS 3.0. This new specification offers a new competitive weapon in the cable arsenal as cable service providers also upgrade their infrastructure, ramp up new services, and expand networks for bandwidth-hungry consumers.
GROWING APPETITE FOR BANDWIDTH
Analysts tracking trends in home entertainment are now talking about networked home entertainment systems. As consumers are told about new opportunities to link their broadband audio, video, and data downloads to electronic devices and gadgets throughout their home, the potential for bandwidth usage grows. In this scenario, cable modems, digital video recorders (DVR), voice over IP (VoIP) systems, personal computers, and TVs will all be linked in a single home network. As each of the latest digital entertainment services come on line, the need for bandwidth increases (see Figure 1).
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