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Calix leverages to bring gigabit experience to MDUs

Broadband equipment developer Calix has announced a trio of new products that will use standards-based technology to bring a gigabit experience to subscribers located in multi-dwelling unit (MDU), mixed use buildings and other high-density dwellings. These new products are the E3-16F sealed distribution point unit (SDPU) node, the 870F MDU services delivery node, and the 844F GigaCenter.

The complexities and challenging economics of fibre deployment inside existing high-density housing has held the market back, Calix asserts. With the addition of the new products, Calix helps service providers exploit the combination of deep fibre deployment near or just inside the dwelling, then use existing in-building copper wiring to deliver a powerful gigabit experience.

“Many think of MDUs as a niche market, but they actually represent the majority of subscribers worldwide,” said Teresa Mastrangelo, principal and founder of Broadbandtrends. “Many service providers struggle with the logistics and economic challenge of deploying fibre within MDU environments because of difficult access and notoriously high churn. has emerged as an ideal technology for bridging this gap by matching the ability to deliver near gigabit speeds over the short copper loops found in most MDU environments with the reality that overlaying the twisted-pair copper infrastructure in these buildings can be difficult and expensive..”

The Calix products employ the latest technology and combine it with hardware and software features to improve the deployment of advanced broadband service deployment in high-density dwellings. Both the hardened, sealed E3-16F and its controlled environment sibling, the 870F, are fibre-fed. They are based on gigabit passive optical network (GPON) technology in their first generation and will auto-detect both GPON and point-to-point Ethernet technologies in the future.

Each node supports up to 16 ports with the flexibility to deliver each subscriber close to 1Gbps of aggregate bandwidth. The 844F GigaCenter terminates the signal then provides a managed gigabit experience for the consumer through hard-wired and Carrier Class Wi-Fi connectivity.

The units are complemented by Calix Compass software, which provide visibility and control of the devices in each unit and throughout the building. End-to-end visibility of the gigabit experience from the cloud all the way to each subscriber device enables new levels of control that dramatically reduce truck rolls, lower operating costs, and increase service velocity through faster turn-ups.  

Michel Langlois, senior vice president of systems products at Calix said: “ provides an opportunity for service providers to extend their gigabit footprints into buildings that couldn’t economically or easily be served by traditional fibre access, and we believe our new solutions have hit the mark in making these environments not only viable but also lucrative.”


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