Tuesday, December 18, 2007

CableLabs Awards DOCSIS 3.0 Qualifications

CableLabs awarded the firs qualification status certifications for DOCSIS 3.0 products.

Casa Systems received "silver" qualification while Arris and Cisco received "bronze" qualification for their cable modem termination systems (CMTS) headend gear. The headends were tested under a tiered program that was created as a way to encourage CMTS makers to submit gear for testing earlier than they otherwise might. CableLabs also offered suppliers numerous informal interoperability events where vendors work together in CableLabs' facilities to test and evaluate their implementations of the specifications.

DOCSIS 3.0 specifications enable downstream data rates of 160 Mbps or higher and upstream data rates of 120 Mbps or higher. To achieve these higher data rates DOCSIS 3.0 describes a methodology for channel bonding in both the upstream and downstream directions. A minimum of four channels, each with throughput of 40 Mbps, is specified.

"This technological achievement is a great step for our industry," said Brian L. Roberts, Chairman and CEO of Comcast Corp., and Chairman of the CableLabs Board of Directors. "CableLabs rapid certification effort will enable companies to begin to develop products that will support the rapid deployment of DOCSIS 3.0 services in 2008."

CableLabs noted that its three-tiered program for CMTS qualification waived some of the more long-term DOCSIS 3.0 CMTS requirements. DOCSIS 3.0 modem testing was unchanged, with only one level of certification that is representative of compliance with the completed DOCSIS modem specification. DOCSIS 3.0 CMTS qualifications were Bronze, Silver and Full. Full DOCSIS 3.0 compliance ultimately will be the sole certification level for CMTS vendors since the two lower levels of qualification will be phased out as the full suite of criteria are made available by vendors.