HUNTSVILLE, AL — ADTRAN, a provider of next-generation open networking solutions, announced that it has taken the next step in mobilizing Software Defined Access by successfully demonstrating non-service impacting wavelength agility and ultra-low latency with its NG-PON2 solution. These milestones were reached in April in support of ADTRAN’s SD-Access strategy for mobile networks. ADTRAN’s NG-PON2 wavelength agility delivers the reliability required to support service level agreements (SLA) for the most demanding mission critical applications. Non-service impacting wavelength agility also provides increased network resiliency and real-time elastic capacity, and delivers a mechanism to optimize utilization of available optical wavelengths in the access network.

According to a report by CIR, 5G densification promises to be a watershed application for NG-PON2, representing a nearly $1B market opportunity by 2026. This will be driven by NG-PON2’s ability to accelerate the path to 5G due to the scale advantages PON-based fiber networks have over P2P and mmWave Xhaul options.

“We expect NG-PON2 shipments to start ramping up in 2019, then nearly double every year for the next couple of years after that. This would be perfect timing to deploy NG-PON2 to backhaul 5G networks as capacity requirements on some 5G networks will be significantly higher than today’s 4G networks,” said Alam Tamboli, Senior Analyst, Dell’Oro Group, Inc.

Architecture to Ensure 5G Delivery
“Network operators are looking for a more cost-effective, scalable and highly available network architecture to ensure that 5G services can be delivered anywhere, to anyone, at home, work or play,” said Ryan McCowan, director of portfolio management for fiber access & aggregation at ADTRAN. “ADTRAN’s NG-PON2 solutions deliver the resiliency, multi-gigabit scale and latency requirements needed to support mission critical applications. These capabilities demonstrate how NG-PON2 can be a keystone access technology for the future of service delivery for both fixed and mobile broadband.”

To date, PON technologies, originally developed for FTTH applications, have not been considered robust enough for SLA-based services, including the upcoming wave of 5G and IoT services that operators are planning to offer and customers are hopeful to leverage. Addressing the variety of 5G backhaul, crosshaul, and fronthaul applications also requires very low latency, a trait not traditionally associated with PON technologies. ADTRAN’s demonstrating non-service impacting wavelength switching in less than 50 milliseconds on its NG-PON2 OLTs presents the market an economic, scalable solution for network operators worldwide. ADTRAN has also demonstrated sub-20 microsecond network latency through NG-PON2, enabling even the most demanding 5G fronthaul applications to take advantage of the economics of PON networks while retaining the resiliency and performance previously attainable only with point-to-point fiber. Combined with ADTRAN’s proven leadership in software-defined access networks, NG-PON2 can deliver the performance, the programmability, and the multi-gigabit ubiquity required to support small cell 5G densification initiatives and the high bandwidth and highly responsive mission critical mobile services they support.

SD-Access based NG-PON2 has the potential to rapidly accelerate the path to 5G, reducing the time to market for automatous cars, tactile internet, massive IoT, and enhanced broadband applications such as 8k video, augmented and virtual reality and artificial intelligence. As the leader in NG-PON2 technology, ADTRAN is well positioned to provide the fiber access infrastructure for 5G.

ADTRAN Creates Gigabit Accelerator Program

ADTRAN also announced the launch of its Gigabit Accelerator Program. The goal of the program is to provide needed resources to service providers that will enable them to accelerate their delivery of gigabit services, especially in rural areas. This comprehensive program includes a gigabit FTTH starter kit, installation services, training, marketing support and access to gigabit community partners. With this program, communities serviced by smaller carriers, who haven’t had marketing or community outreach resources readily available, can more easily market their next-gen broadband services to subscribers and evangelize broadband benefits within the community.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) continues to drive for expanding broadband coverage through programs such as the Connect America Fund (CAF) and Alternative Connect America Cost Model (A-CAM). Also, the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives have recently taken up the Gigabit Opportunity Act, a bill designed to bridge the digital divide and allow all communities to benefit from the advantages that broadband Internet brings to local economies, education and rural healthcare. The ADTRAN Gigabit Accelerator Program aligns with this vision by accelerating gigabit services rollouts through a comprehensive program targeted at A-CAM funding recipients who haven’t had the internal resources to do such.

Since 2012, a number of service providers have announced rollouts of gigabit services, and now about 18 percent of the U.S. population has access to gigabit services. That means that over 80 percent of the U.S. population still does not have access to gigabit internet, presenting service providers with a huge opportunity to expand services and gain market share. However, smaller carriers face several barriers to rolling out gigabit services, in addition to the cost of new access equipment, such as:

  • The cost of installing, testing and commissioning this equipment and the technical resources to do so;
  • The lack of quality marketing resources to help acquire new customers more rapidly, thus affecting their return on investment; and,
  • The lack of access to broadband use-cases and industry resources that would streamline community outreach, accelerate community buy-in, lead to higher service take-rates, and reduce barriers to construction.

Previously, there has not been a one-stop source for all things gigabit. ADTRAN has now packaged its experience from the over 400 gigabit communities that have deployed ADTRAN FTTH solutions and has used this experience to create a program that enables a service provider to market, roll out, activate, and monetize broadband services, as well as promote the economic value of Gigabit services into the community.

The ADTRAN Gigabit Accelerator Program allows service providers to overcome these barriers by:

  • Rolling out gigabit services faster
  • Improving operational efficiencies and lowering costs
  • Accelerating gigabit take-rates

“Increasingly, access to broadband is transforming communities across the globe, but resource stumbling blocks faced by our nation’s telecom service providers has slowed the momentum,” said Mark Ogden, director of sales, ADTRAN. “ADTRAN’s expertise and deep partner relationships can help bridge this digital divide. We believe that by approaching this challenge with the concept of a startup accelerator program, we will most effectively facilitate the best solution to accelerate gigabit rollouts here in the United States and allow all communities to harness the transformative powers of broadband.”