Super-channels are the gateway to success for video excess

10 June 2014 | Chris Champion

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Chris Champion

Blog Author | Infinera; Senior Vice President, sales, EMEA


We have fallen for the internet’s many charms hook, line and sinker. It has become an integral component of our social lives, business endeavours and daily entertainment, and expectations are raised for high-quality, superfast and consistent broadband.

We have fallen for the internet’s many charms hook, line and sinker. It has become an integral component of our social lives, business endeavours and daily entertainment, and expectations are raised for high-quality, superfast and consistent broadband.

Internet content providers (ICP) are meeting our demands for information, offering over 20 petabytes of imagery and storing over 100 petabytes of data. But this puts pressure on internet service providers (ISP) to satisfy our taste for bandwidth.

ICPs have taken matters into their own hands by rolling out fibre-optic cables and becoming their own network operators, giving them the freedom to control what they are paying for bandwidth and the assurance that there are no pinch points in the network to affect their customers’ experience. But the investment required to build these networks required them to be future-proofed to keep up with our ever-growing broadband requirements, because each new innovation means more capacity is needed.

Video streaming has a huge impact on this growing demand for broadband. With Netflix introducing 4K video streaming, CEO Reed Hastings has said that an average speed of 15.6 Mbps would be required, which is more than double the average broadband speed that customers in Britain currently receive (7.6 Mbps). Our thirst for video on demand is showing no signs of being quenched, as we turn away from more conventional TV sets and look to the internet for our evening’s entertainment. The clock is ticking for operators to update their networks, and they need a solution they can implement now to ensure their network is ready for the internet of the future.

Fibre-optic super-channels offer ISPs a solution to this burgeoning bandwidth dilemma. By expanding the capacity of fibres, similar to a high-speed motorway of bandwidth, operators are able to provision capacity based on real-time demand for their service. Adding automation into the transport layer results in a perfectly harmonious, flexible and intelligent network that can scale up or down as needed, providing enough capacity to support the next generation of data services.

With megatrends such as video pushing network providers to their bandwidth limits, solutions like fibre-optic super-channels are a sure-fire way of preparing networks for the impending bandwidth battle.

As 4K becomes a reality, consumers will expect nothing but the best bandwidth for their buck, and it is down to ISPs to provide this.