Netopia Inc. this week is highlighting its new MiAVo triple-play DSL gateway family of products, which can support bonded ADSL2+, FTTH, VDSL2 and 100mbps Ethernet as well as a variety of LAN-side options including MoCA; HPNA.3 over coax or RJ11; and a lesser-known option called Plastic Optical Fiber.
At TelecomNEXT this week Netopia also is discussing its recent efforts to help service provider address the operational cost issues associated with IPTV and the triple play.
The MiAVo products are built based on specific carrier requirements, so an individual box will only include the access and LAN-side options requested by a given carrier, explained Jeff Porter, vice president of product marketing, but there is common firmware used across the entire MiAVo product family.
Porter said Netopia has had good success in delivering DSL CPE to large carriers and other companies since changing its customer target in 2000 in light of CLEC fallout.
For example, Netopia provides business-class DSL solutions for AT&T Inc. and BellSouth Corp., among others, and is the exclusive provider of such gear for both business and residential applications to Swisscom (which, by the way, asked Netopia for the Plastic Optical Fiber option mentioned above).
But, Porter added, requirements for business-class CPE now are being eclipsed by requirements for residential CPE. As a result, he said, Netopia invested significant R&D dollars into developing MiAVo, which stands for Multimedia in, Audio/Video Out.
The MiAVo boxes, for which pricing varies based on configuration, are available now. Porter said Netopia already has orders from international carriers.
Tying into the theme of IPTV and the triple play, Netopia has announced that an independent testing lab (ITL) in France called LEA will be the first to do certification testing for TR-069 CPE gear.
TR-069 was ratified a little more than a year ago by its creator, The DSL Forum. It is a standard protocol for communication between CPE and an auto-configuration server to do auto-configuration and dynamic service provisioning; software/firmware image management; status, performance monitoring and diagnostics.
Porter said before LEA stepped in to do TR-069 certification testing there was a gaping hole in the industry concerning third-party certification of this DSL Forum technical requirement. He expects other testing labs to add this capability as well over time.
Today theres no service provider that is [focused on the] triple play who is not in the process of selecting a TR-69 platform to address their quality of service, Porter said. Although The DSL Forum has been working on this DSL operational issue for some time, Porter noted the actual TR was only recently ratified and only two carriers have publicly deployed TR-069 platforms. BellSouth was one, he said, declining to name the other. BellSouth uses the TR-069-compliant Netopia Broadband Server, which can be used to manage Netopia CPE, other vendors home gateways or even other CPE, like set-top boxes, Web cams, and the like, said Porter.
TR-069 is of key importance to service providers, Porter explained, because the triple play is so costly. The new digital home requires carriers to be the perpetual IT support system for customers. So without the ability to reach into customer homes using remote management rather than a truck roll or a major call center effort service providers are in trouble.