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FTTx a necessary component of video-focused world

By Max Burkhalter
August 13, 2013

Video is transforming the way many people receive content. As home, business and mobileusers begin to embrace video, more websites are turning to the content format to engage audiences. This, combined with the rise of IPTV, is pushing telecoms to transform their networks. Deploying fiber-to-the-premise (FTTx) infrastructure could be the solution for many video-related challenges facing telecoms.

Video pushes bandwidth requirements beyond the barriers of what many internal corporate or home networks can handle. This is leading to many internal network upgrades in a wide range of sectors. In response, telecoms need to be able to offer the kind of performance and functionality companies need. In many cases,the backhaul and access networks that telecoms offer need to be able to meet high standards for performance, making fiber critical. This is especially true as video becomes more prominent because the data format is sensitive to transmission disruption.

Understanding the unique challenges of delivering video content
Video is delivered in data-rich packets that must be sent through the network with incredibly efficiency to function properly. The problem with video is that it does not get along well with Ethernet systems. If an Ethernet network reaches the maximum amount of bandwidth available at any time, it drops a data packet and automatically resends it. For traditional forms of data, this is not in any way problematic because it only leads to a delay of a fraction of a second. With video, the data packets must reach users in the correct order and without any disruption. Otherwise, the content will have to stop to buffer and load while the data packets are resent.

With such data-rich packets associated with video, telecoms can easily be overloaded by the amount of bandwidth required to support high-performance content delivery. There are specialized forms of networks that can ease this burden, but these are generally better used by specific content providers, not telecoms. Instead, telecoms may need to make strategic upgrades to fiber if they want to support rising video demands.

Establishing a fiber-based telecom network
Fiber offers plenty of potential, but fiber to Ethernet media converters are essential to maximizing the value of any such network. For most telecoms, FTTx is only the first step of the network deployment process, as the infrastructure must also connect to homes, businesses and other sites where copper-based Ethernet systems. The compatibility challenges that exist here can be solved easily and cost efficiently through media conversion technologies.

Perle has an extensive range of Managed and Unmanaged Fiber Media Converters to extended copper-based Ethernet equipment over a fiber optic link, multimode to multimode and multimode to single mode fiber up to 160km.


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