Sunday, March 13, 2022

What's hot at OFC22? Ranovus on Co-Packaged Optics

Co-Packaged Optics are a center point of discussions at #OFC22, says Hamid Arabzadeh, President and CEO of Ranovus.

At the event, Ranovus launched its first generation of co-packaged optics, which monolithically integrates an optical engine into a single die, including drivers, TIAs, photodetectors, modulators, and the laser. Ranovus partnered with AMD-Xiliinx to be able to co-package its chip with the Xilinx Versal compute accelerator.

GlobalFoundries unveils next gen silicon photonics platform

GlobalFoundries unveiled its next generation silicon photonics platform and active design wins with major customers, including collaborations with Broadcom, Cisco Systems, Marvell, NVIDIA, Ayar Labs, Lightmatter, PsiQuantum, Ranovus and Xanadu. The platform enables a high level of integration onto a photonics integrated circuit (PIC). It also supports innovative packaging solutions, such as the passive attachment for larger fiber arrays, support...

Ranovus and Xilinx to demo Co-Packaged Optics integration

 At this week's OFC event in San Diego, Ranovus will demonstrated its Co-Packaged Optics (CPO) 2.0 integration featuing  a Xilinx Versal ACAP its own Ranovus Odin 800Gbps optical engine. The integration eliminates the need for the retimer, resulting in 75% smaller footprint and 40% cost and power consumption savings in the Optical Interconnect.RANOVUS’ Odin is a low latency, high density, and protocol agnostic optical engine that delivers...

What's hot at OFC22? Dan Pitt on Network Disaggregation

Network disaggregation is happening at a rapid pace, but it is having some unintended consequences, says Dan Pitt, President, Palo Alto Innovation Advisors.

One such consequence is that as you disaggregate the hardware, you also disaggregate the software, and means you need CI/CD if there is to be interoperability.

Here’s a look at some disaggregation demos, speaker sessions, and key technology trends at #OFC22.

What's hot at OFC22? Hirose on Multimode Waveguide Interconnects

 The Consortium for Onboard Optics (COBO) recently formed a working group to address Multi-mode Waveguide Interconnect System (MWIS) as an alternative to copper traces in printed circuit boards.  In this video, Joshua Kihong Kim, Principal Engineer, Photonic Signal Integrity, Hirose, discusses the latest developments.

COBO focuses on Multimode Waveguide Interconnects 

 The Consortium for On-Board Optics (COBO) has established a new Multi-Mode Waveguide Interconnect System (MWIS) Working Group to focus specifically on the replacement of copper traces with multi-mode waveguides and adding an extra thin interface for Electrical/Optical and Optical/Electrical conversion within close proximity to the electrical component.

"I am very pleased to have kicked off the new Multimode Waveguide Interconnect System (MWIS) Working Group. Although embedded optical waveguides in printed circuit boards have been researched for decades, now is the time for the industry to work together to address the imminent bandwidth and power issues associated with copper interfaces," said Joshua Kihong Kim, Principal Engineer at Hirose Electric and COBO MWIS Working Group Chair. "In the development of on-board optical systems, this is one of the missing pieces of the puzzle, and COBO is stepping up to develop specifications to enable an industry eco-system."

"The growing diversity of optical applications within the Data Center, including machine learning and resource disaggregation, are driving an increased need to enhance high-speed board level interconnect systems with optical waveguide technology.  COBO members recognize it is critical for companies to collaborate and provide guidance and specifications for design advancement," said Brad Booth, President at COBO and Principal Engineer, Azure Hardware Architecture at Microsoft. "We welcome interested parties to contact us if they would like understand more about our new MWIS Working Group."

What's hot at OFC22? 3M on Expanded Beam Optics

 With all the discussion surrounding silicon photonics and co-packaged optics, and considering the possibility of moving lasers from the faceplate to nearer the switch, it's clear the industry will look for a new generation of reliable connector, says Duane Preiss, Portfolios Marketing Director, 3M. Expanded beam optical is delivering a solution.

Webinar archive: Expanded beam optics

How do you ensure the reliability of a fiber connection to a switch at very high line rates or once co-packaged optics (CPO) solutions come to market? Dust is always a concern, especially at 400G and above, when even a small contamination can lead to magnified disruptions. Reliable optical interconnects are key! The latest OSFP 4.0 spec introduces support for Expanded Beam Optical (EBO) technology, opening up new possibilities.This webinar explores...

3M intros Expanded Beam Ferrule and Connector System

Earlier this month, 3M introduced an Expanded Beam Optical Connector System for single mode and multimode interconnects in next-gen data centers. “We’ve reimagined fiber optic connectors,” said Nick Stacey, Ph.D., global laboratory manager at 3M. “Our ferrule and connector technology is designed to reduce cleaning requirements, to provide design flexibility and to enable the performance necessary for next-generation optical deployment.” The 3M...

AT&T looks to ramp investment in 5G and fiber

 AT&T is setting its sights on becoming "America's best broadband provider" based on a strategy of owning and operating both fiber and wireless. In light of closing its pending WarnerMedia transaction with Discovery, AT&T updated its financial expectations for 2022 and 2023, saying it will shift Capex to fiber and 5G.

“Now that the close of the WarnerMedia deal is approaching, we are near the starting line of a new era for AT&T,” said John Stankey, AT&T chief executive officer. “The transformation we’ve undergone over the past 18 months while delivering outstanding operational results has brought us to this point. We will be a simpler, more focused company with the intent to become America’s best broadband provider. We plan to ramp up investment in our key areas of growth — 5G and fiber. And at the same time, we will retain our focus on growing customer relationships, continuously improve our execution to enhance the customer experience and deliver growth and returns for our shareholders.

Key elements of the plan:

  • AT&T plans to double its fiber footprint to 30-plus million locations,2 including increasing its business customer locations by 2x to 5 million. In doing so, the company expects to add 3.5 million to 4 million customer locations each year. 
  • AT&T plans to deploy 120 MHz of mid-band spectrum to cover more than 200 million people by the end of 2023. This complements the company’s existing 5G footprint, which covers more than 255 million people in more than 16,000 cities and towns.
  • AT&T also expects to continue benefitting from the migration of customers to its unlimited plans, particularly to higher-ARPU Unlimited Elite — the company’s fastest-growing rate plan. In addition, as its fiber footprint expands, the company expects to continue gaining share in the consumer broadband market where it offers fiber, building upon the momentum it has established with four consecutive years of 1 million or more fiber subscriber additions.
  • AT&T expects to drive significant savings by reducing the company’s legacy copper footprint. By 2025, AT&T expects that 75% of its network footprint will be served via fiber and 5G and that it will have reduced its copper services footprint by 50%. At the same time, the company will successfully navigate the timing and profitability of the migration from legacy to next-generation products to optimize returns.
  • AT&T is also focused on simplifying its business product portfolio, with plans to reduce the number of products and legacy rate plans by 50%. This simplification enables the company to focus on a repeatable playbook to deliver core connectivity and transport solutions with attractive owner’s economics.
  • AT&T is also developing software solutions on top of its connectivity. These include Network Edge solutions through alliances with Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud; Private 5G services offering businesses, universities and the public sector private cellular networks that seamlessly integrate with AT&T’s nationwide macro network; and solutions to provide safe, secure connectivity in today’s hybrid work environments.
  • AT&T plans to use cash flow from more mature businesses to help fuel its planned $24 billion in annual capital investment in 2022 and 2023, with incremental cost savings hitting the bottom line.3
  • By the end of 2023, the company expects to reach $6 billion in run-rate cost savings. By the end of 2021, it had achieved more than $3 billion in cost savings, which were primarily reinvested into the company’s growth engines.
  • In addition to its network pivot from copper to fiber and 5G, the company is focused on enhancing the customer experience and streamlining operations in areas like corporate G&A, supply chain and technology platforms to yield further cost benefits. And in 2022 and 2023, AT&T expects an additional $2.5 billion in cumulative cost savings, which will increasingly fall to the bottom line, driving growth in adjusted EBITDA.

For 2022, the company expects:

  • Low single-digit total revenue growth, up from $118.2 billion on a pro forma basis in 2021, driven by 3% or better growth in wireless service revenues and 6% or better growth in broadband revenues.
  • Adjusted EBITDA of $41 billion to $42 billion, up from $40.3 billion on a pro forma basis in 2021, even with about $600 million in headwinds from 3G shutdown costs and absence of CAF II credits, which are weighted to the first half of 2022.
  • In addition to revenue growth, the company expects adjusted EBITDA to benefit from incremental cost transformation savings of about $1 billion versus 2021 levels.
  • Adjusted EPS of $2.42 to $2.46, compared to $2.41 on a pro forma basis in 2021, with growth in adjusted EBITDA and operating income partially offset by a higher effective tax rate.7
  • Capital investment in the $24 billion range, including about $5 billion to deploy 5G spectrum, compared to $20.1 billion on a pro forma basis for 2021.

For 2023, the company expects:

  • Continued low single-digit revenue growth, driven by low single-digit growth in wireless service revenues and a ramp in broadband revenue growth to the mid to high single-digit range.
  • Adjusted EBITDA of $43.5 billion to $44.5 billion, with approximately $1.5 billion in additional cost transformation savings.
  • Adjusted EPS of $2.50 to $2.60.
  • Capital investment in the $24 billion range with consistent investment in 5G spectrum deployment in the $5 billion range.
Analyst Day materials are posted online.

OFC22 attracted 8,000 participants

OFC, which was held 06-10 March in San Diego, California attracted a 8,000 participants and 430 exhibiting companies.

"Global optical communications leaders united once again to exchange information and demonstrate ground-breaking interoperability including the newly launched OFCnet, catapulting optical technologies and network advancements into the reality of tomorrow," said OFC General Chairs Shinji Matsuo, David Plant and Jun Shan Wey. "Over the past two years, many of the best and brightest companies have been hard at work and were eager to show the world just how far optical advancements have come."

Skorpios confirms BroadEx as 400G customer, new pricing paradigm

Skorpios Technologies confirmed that BroadEx Technologies is now a customer of its 400G Engines. 

The SKRP4501 is a 400G-FR4 Optical Engine combining the transmit/receive optical functions of Skorpios' Heterogeneous Photonic Integrated Circuits (HPIC) with TIA amplification and DSP functionality on a single Multichip Module. Skorpios' unique Tru-SiPh™ platform heterogeneously integrating lasers, modulators, and other components on a polarization insensitive silicon photonics platform.

"With our intrinsically hermetic Tru-SiPh™ platform, and our Engine technology, we are simplifying implementation for our customers," said David Huff, SVP Sales and Marketing for Skorpios. "We continue to make parts that allow our customers to get to market cheaply and quickly." In addition, Skorpios announced that it will be offering volume customers for CWDM4 and FR4 Optical Links pricing for the complete optical function that changes the pricing paradigm. Skorpios will offer its transmit and receive pairs for less than 15 cents/Gb/s in volume. This includes 100G-CWDM4, 200G-FR4, and 400G-FR4. Skorpios' Tru-SiPh platform heterogeneously integrating lasers, modulators, and other components on a polarization insensitive silicon photonics platform. 

At OFC22, Skorpios demonstrated its SKRP2035 HPIC, a new highly integrated 800Gb/s Heterogeneous Photonic Integrated Circuits (HPICs). The transmitter chip includes all 30 optical elements necessary for 800Gb/s 2xFR4 module designs in a single uncooled silicon device connecting eight PAM4 lanes to two optical fibers. 

SmartAVLink launches USB-C Active Optical Cable

Shenzhen-based SmartAVLink introduced a USB type C Active Optical Cable in a maximum length of 10 meters.

With power delivery of up to 60 watts, the next-gen AOC supports various voltage profiles up to 20 Volts at 3 Amps and is thus able to charge a wide range of devices. W

Key features:

  • USB 3.2 compliant — supports a SuperSpeed USB data rate of 10 Gbps
  • Transmits 4K/30 DisplayPort video and embedded audio signals — compatible with DisplayPort Alt mode-capable USB–C host devices, the unidirectional USB C cables transmit DisplayPort video and embedded audio signals from the host to the connected display device.
  • Supports pass through of EDID and HDCP-encrypted signals.
  • Ultra-flexible, ultra-thin 0.25" (6.5 mm) diameter cable — a narrow bend radius facilitates easier installation and reduces the possibility of cable damage.
  • Bidirectional USB power flow — when connected to USB devices that support USB PD (Power Delivery), power flows both ways, enabling both host and peripheral devices to provide power to the far-end device.
  • Highly resistant to EMI/RFI Interference, the USB C full function (Data + Video + PD) can be used in high-interference environments, such as data centers and manufacturing facilities. Moreover, as the leading manufacturer of AOCs, SmartAVLink is currently preparing to apply for longer Type C full function cable in order to extend the range of super high-performance cable options available to clients.