SINGAPORE — With ultra-broadband technologies on target to become a transformative next generation solution for high speed Internet, ultra-high bandwidth and faster Internet speeds of 1 Gbps will be achievable when using, cable technology DOCSIS 3.1 or GPON. In fact, DOCSIS 3.1 is able to produce downstream speeds of 10 Gbps and upstream speeds of 1 Gbps when equipped with the proper devices and ideal network settings. ABI Research, a provider of transformative technology innovation market intelligence, forecasts that there will be approximately 9 million broadband subscribers using DOCSIS 3.1 equipment by 2017, representing slightly more than 1 percent of total fixed broadband subscriptions worldwide.

“Technology vendors like SAGEMCOM, Technicolor and Teleste Corporation already have commercial DOCSIS 3.1 solutions available in the market, which has seen strong response in the Western European region,” says Michael Inouye, principal analyst at ABI Research. “The DOCSIS 3.1-ready products and solutions are able to achieve 1.2 GHz bandwidth, and some, like those from Teleste, started shipping in 2014. Meanwhile, operators in the United States are showing interest, with cable players like Comcast, Cox and Midcontinent to launch their DOCSIS 3.1 networks in 2016 and 2017.”

The growing demand for broadband content and services, along with the need for enhanced quality of experience (i.e., high definition video and beyond and smooth streaming) is spurring the development of gigabit services in the market. With numerous planned trials on DOCSIS 3.1 to facilitate the commercial deployments of gigabit services, many cable companies are making the availability of DOCSIS 3.1 nearer to a reality due to its expected cost-effectiveness and scalability.

On-demand Services Growing Faster than Traditional Broadcasting
At present, ABI Research finds that interest for on-demand services is picking up faster than traditional broadcasting. In addition, European operators are facing tough competition from content providers, which, in turn, leads to a huge demand in network devices like ultra-broadband.

Enabling Cable Operators to Migrate to a Pure IPTV over DOCSIS Network
“European operators like Altice, TDC and Telenet likewise made inroads into preparing their networks for the launch of DOCSIS 3.1 in 2016,” concludes Sam Rosen, managing director and vice president at ABI Research. “Ultimately, in instances in which corporations and homes already installed cable, it is more economical to upgrade cable services than make the switch to fiber, which gives DOCSIS 3.1 a definite advantage in the market space. Thinking ahead, enhanced deployments of ultra-broadband networks could pave the way for cable operators to migrate to a pure IPTV over DOCSIS network, abandoning legacy broadcast QAM technology. However, no major operator is publicly investigating that approach.”