When it comes to delivering Internet and network services from an operator’s equipment all the way to a home, business or enterprise, optical fiber carries with it two important qualities: robustness and reliability. In fact, connecting all endpoints directly to fiber optic cable enables tremendous improvements in what bandwidth devices are capable of delivering.
Deploying fiber deep pushes better cable service closer to the customer, enhances scalability, and addresses concerns about aging copper being a bottleneck to network innovation. Today, fiber optics have become engrained into nearly every facet of communications, from transmission fibers used in undersea, terrestrial, metro and local area networks (LAN), to specialty fibers used in amplifiers, lasers, sensors and more.
New optical fiber improvements have come in the form of providing higher bandwidth, supporting longer distances or reducing the overall cost of transport.
Let’s spotlight one of the latest innovations: fiber-to-the-home (FTTH). Defined as an access network architecture in which the connection to the subscriber’s premises is optical fiber, FTTH terminates the fiber optic communications path on or inside the premises for the purpose of carrying communication services to a single subscriber.
This becomes critically important as you look at the fact that despite the average number of Internet-connected devices per home continuing to increase, fiber passes less than one third of homes in the U.S. Furthermore, only 39 percent of consumers have access to more than one broadband provider of 25 Mbps service. Approximately 10 million rural homes and 3 million urban and suburban homes can’t get broadband speeds at all.
And now as the market enters the era of 5G, fiber matters more than ever. With 5G relying in large part on high radio frequencies, a large number of small 5G radios, or “cells,” will be required, and those small cells will require a substantial amount of fiber. In fact, estimates call for 1,390,816 miles of fiber cable, to be exact. And that is just to provide full 5G service to the top-25 metropolitan land areas in the United States alone.
Taking it a step further, estimates say that deploying 5G wireless speeds 10 to 100 times faster than 4G will cost $130 to $150 billion in fiber optic cabling alone over the next five-to-seven years.
Increased speed and capacity from 5G will rely on higher radio frequencies and greater network densification, which increases the number and concentration of cell sites and access points. And in the end, that payoff could ultimately prove substantial as fiber paves a critical path to next-generation networks.
The standards and evolving technologies are a staple of TIA’s work. Engage in a TIA working group or educational program to be at the forefront of this field.
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Vernon Yow of Sumitomo Electric Lightwave talks about ribbon technology and how that impacts improved cabling. Yow speaks further about the applications of ribbon technology for data centers and how ultra-high-fiber-count ribbon cables meet the growing need for high fiber density in data centers.
The May 21st product launch of Corning's ONE™ Wireless Platform at CTIA 2013 will demonstrate the first all-optical converged in-building wireless solution designed to deliver more bandwidth, services and applications over a single fiber infrastructure.
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TIA NOW sat down with David Thompson, Director of Product Marketing at ZyXEL, at CES 2013 to discuss the future of fixed 4G/LTE, home connectivity and more.
As we try to reach greater speeds and capacities in data center cabling designs, what are the pros and cons of SMF vs. MMF? Patrick Van Vickle, Senior Manager of Product Design and Engineering at Sumitomo Electric Lightwave joins us in the TIA NOW studio to give us the latest on this topic.
Mario Simard, Group Manager of Business Development at EXFO spoke with TIA NOW, following TIA's Small Cell & DAS Workshop, about the importance of education about fiber for in-building wireless and the transformation between Fronthaul and Centralized-RAN.
Bill Cune, VP of Commercial Technology at Corning, spoke with TIA NOW following TIA's Small Cell & DAS Workshop about what type of infrastructure that can support DAS, small cell, remote radio head and Wi-Fi technologies.
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