Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Credo samples CMOS VCSEL Driver in an 800G DSP

Credo introduced new Dove 800D and 410D PAM4 DSPs chips optimized for active optical cables and short reach tranceivers targeting hyperscale data centers and AI applications. Sampling is underway.

The new 8x100G and 4x100G per lane devices incorporate VCSEL drivers and fourth generation DSP technology which combined, creates an optimized, high-performance, small footprint solution that meets the increasingly stringent energy efficiency requirements of hyperscalers. The Dove 800D and 410D DSPs are tailored for multimode optical fiber (MMF) applications.

The Dove 800D is designed for low-power, high-performance 2x400G, or 1x800G OSFP and QSFP-DD800 optical transceivers. 

The Dove 410D is optimized for 2x200G or 1x400G QSFP112 optical transceivers. 

Both devices include integrated Credo VCSEL drivers. Dedicated PLLs for each transmit and receive data lane enable a wide range of breakout applications. High-performance optical and electrical host side DSP technology, together with specialized performance enhancing features, compensate for optical and electrical impairments while maintaining low power dissipation. Highlights:

  • 100G PAM4 on both the electrical host and optical line side.
  • Fourth generation DSPs on optical side and electrical side deliver industry leading sensitivity and Bit Error Rate performance, providing margin for component variation and high-volume manufacturing.
  • Line side Rx performance-enhancing features tailored to address optical impairments in stressful MMF environment.
  • Integrated 100G VCSEL drivers with programmable laser currents to optimize module layout and reduce BOM costs.
  • High-performance transmitters come with multi-tap FIR filters, allowing precision optimization at both the module electrical connector and optical interface.
  • Host side interface supports extended PCB reach without the need for customized per-channel settings.
  • Independent phase locked loops per channel support flexible breakout configurations including 2x400G, 4x200G and 8x100G.
  • Full suite of test features and loopbacks simplifies lab bring up and production testing to reduce time-to-market.
  • Low-power dissipation enables higher rack utilization and lower thermal cooling requirements.

“The newest hyperscale buildouts require an increasing number of optical fiber connections driven by applications such as AI and machine learning,” said Michael Girvan Lampe, Vice President of Worldwide Sales and Marketing at Credo. “The majority of this traffic is sent over short 400G and 800G MMF links using optical SR4/SR8 modules or Active Optical Cables (AOCs). Dove 800D and 410D DSPs, with integrated VCSEL drivers, address this expanding market and enable our customers to simplify their PCB design while reducing overall module costs.”

AT&T on track with full-year guidance

Speaking at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia + Technology Conference, AT&T CEO John Stankey provided the following updates:

  • Stankey is confident in the company’s full-year guidance., which includes free cash flow of better than $16 billion. As previously indicated, the primary factors supporting the company’s cash outlook are expectations for full-year 2023 adjusted EBITDA growth of 3-plus percent, largely in-line capital investment and lower handset payments for full-year 2023 compared to 2022.
  • AT&T has added 8 million+ postpaid phones and 3 million+ fiber subscribers since July 2020. In the second quarter of 2023, AT&T grew wireless service revenue by $2 billion+ compared to the second quarter 2020 and generated record mobility 2Q EBITDA.
  • AT&T expects steady wireless subscriber growth in the third quarter as a result of healthy subscriber demand; a rational competitive environment; and positive subscriber porting trends with no material change in porting ratios, including to cable.
  • In fiber, AT&T expects continued solid subscriber growth in the third quarter even with lower household move activity
  • AT&T now passes 25 million+ consumer and business fiber locations and remains committed to its goal to pass 30+ million consumer and business customer locations with fiber in its traditional service area by the end of 2025. 

PacketLight and ID Quantique enable optical quantum key distribution

PacketLight and ID Quantique have integrated Quantum Key Distribution technology within PacketLight devices, signifying a significant milestone in the technological advancements of secure data transmission.

The successful integration of IDQ’s 4th generation of quantum key distribution (QKD) solutions with PacketLight's DWDM & OTN encrypted transport delivers a highly secure quantum-safe encrypted network. 

PacketLight’s firmware also supports IDQ’s Clarion KX Quantum-Key Management System. It is a central piece of software that enables the extension of QKD technology beyond point-to-point topology, to build QKD networks that ensure long-distance reach of the Quantum keys. 

"The convergence of IDQ technology and PacketLight's DWDM/OTN devices advances the security of data transmission by enhancing our Layer-1 encryption solutions,” said Koby Reshef, CEO of PacketLight. “We are proud of this cooperation, and eagerly anticipate the opportunities it will unveil in the market."

"As the day of Quantum Computing breaking public-key cryptography is approaching, it is increasingly important to make current networks quantum-safe. We are extremely happy to join forces with PacketLight to provide a higher level of security to their customers,” said Gregoire Ribordy, CEO of ID Quantique.

Dell'Oro: Record-breaking 2Q 2023 data center switch sales

Global sales of Data Center Switches continued to break record levels for the fifth consecutive quarter in a row, according to a new report from Dell'Oro Group. 

What’s also remarkable is that, for the first time in about five years, the bulk of the growth during the quarter was driven by enterprises, not Cloud SPs.

“The market performance continues to hit high notes, propelled by the release of a substantial backlog. Most of this backlog is from orders placed after the list price increases implemented by most vendors more than a year ago, said Sameh Boujelbene, Vice President at Dell’Oro Group. “Additionally, a larger portion of the second quarter’s shipments was destined to enterprises, resulting in a favorable product mix with higher prices compared to shipments to Cloud SPs. Meanwhile, the music in the Cloud SP arena has begun to fade, as many of them have started to enter a digestion phase following several quarters of robust spending. Furthermore, a sense of urgency pervades as they rush to build cutting-edge Artificial Intelligence (AI) infrastructure to accommodate emerging large AI workloads. These investments in AI infrastructure appear to be diverting budget away from traditional front-end networks that typically support general-purpose workloads,” added Boujelbene.

Additional highlights from the 2Q 2023 Ethernet Switch – Data Center Report:

  • Arista, Cisco, and HPE captured most of the revenue growth and were able to gain revenue share during the quarter.
  • Geographically, sales growth was broad-based across all regions, except China.
  • Further fueled by AI applications, shipments of 200 Gbps and 400 Gbps switches constituted approximately 25 percent of the revenue and 20 percent of the total shipments. Although Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and Meta continue to drive the majority of deployments, we observed an increasing number of shipments directed toward Tier 2/3 Cloud Service Providers and Large Enterprises.

Platforms for Advanced Wireless Research builds testbed in Iowa

The Platforms for Advanced Wireless Research (PAWR) has established a testbed in Iowa dedicated to research on rural wireless systems and applications. 

As the fourth and final platform in the PAWR program, the new ARA testbed is based on the Iowa State University (ISU) campus with coverage extending to local crop and livestock farms and parts of the city of Ames. 

The ARA platform uniquely combines several types of technologies in both the backhaul and radio access portions of the network from Aviat, Skylark Wireless, NI , and Ericsson. For backhaul connectivity, ARA uses Aviat radios operating in the 11 Gigahertz and 80 Gigahertz bands. The testbed also maintains fiber connections as backup. In the radio access network, the ARA team has partnered with Skylark Wireless in developing and deploying production-grade, many-antenna MIMO systems with research APIs for communications using TV White Space (TVWS) spectrum, and it has deployed software defined radios from NI using mid-band connectivity.

ARA has also partnered with Ericsson, which contributed equipment and services to enable the deployment of a commercial-grade 5G standalone network on site. The commercial network includes an Ericsson 5G SA core and multiple massive MIMO 5G base stations in the mid-band and mmWave band operating with commercial user equipment across the platform. The Ericsson connectivity will support the development of precision agriculture applications, among other research initiatives, and is connecting farm sites that previously had little to no broadband access.

“ARA offers a publicly available wireless living lab supporting rural-focused research, education, and innovation,” said Dr. Hongwei Zhang, professor in the ISU Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Department of Computer Science, and Director of the ARA platform. “We are delighted to open ARA up to the research community and look forward to supporting work that will not only help narrow the gap between rural and urban connectivity, but also advance the frontiers of 5G and 6G communications.”

“The goal of the PAWR program is to offer opportunities for wireless research at scale across a mix of geographic and technologically diverse environments,” said Ellen Zegura, division director for NSF’s Division of Computer and Network Systems. “Located in the heart of Central Iowa, ARA rounds out the program by offering advanced wireless infrastructure in a uniquely rural setting. Researchers will now be able to apply their skills to increasing the performance and cost-effectiveness of rural wireless deployments and to developing new applications that improve critical agricultural operations. We are excited by what the ARA team has accomplished and the broader, use-inspired research work that can now begin.”

Dell'Oro: North American Broadband Access Equipment Spending Drops

Total global revenue for the Broadband Access equipment market decreased to $4.7 B in 2Q23, down 3 percent year-over-year (Y/Y), according to a recently published report from Dell'Oro Group,. Outside of North America, spending on PON equipment and Fixed Wireless CPE continued to remain strong this quarter, though not enough to offset declines in both Cable and DSL CPE purchases.

"North American service providers are clearly seeing the impact of slowing subscriber growth by reducing their purchases of new DOCSIS, PON, and even Fixed Wireless CPE," said Jeff Heynen, Vice President with Dell'Oro Group. "Meanwhile, infrastructure purchases in the region are more mixed, with Cable Access Concentrator spending up sharply and PON OLT purchases only slightly down," explained Heynen.

Additional highlights from the 2Q 2023 Broadband Access and Home Networking quarterly report:

  • Total residential Wireless LAN units were down 6 percent Y/Y, as a combination of seasonal slowness and reduced broadband subscriber growth dragged down new unit purchases in the quarter. The third quarter typically sees a return to growth in both unit shipments and revenue.
  • Total cable access concentrator revenue was up 15 percent Y/Y at $270 M. Remote PHY devices, Remote OLTs, and Virtual CMTS platforms all recorded significant revenue gains for the quarter, as cable operators continue to expand their DAA and fiber initiatives.

NETSCOUT debuts RAN Analytics for Carrier Aggregation

NETSCOUT introduced a RAN Analytics for Carrier Aggregation solution to help mobile operators achieve superior performance and a better subscriber experience with high-speed LTE and 5G deployments.

RAN Analytics for Carrier Aggregation is vendor agnostic, 3GPP compliant, and uses NETSCOUT’s Smart Data, making it scalable and suitable for networks of any size and at any stage in the 5G lifecycle. Additionally, the data is available for export to Open RAN automation systems, data lakes, and other third parties.

“Carrier aggregation analytics offer the key to automatically determine the root cause of carrier aggregation performance which unlocks the full potential of high-speed LTE and 5G services since single call analysis is no longer viable or cost-effective,” said Paolo Trevisan, AVP of product management at NETSCOUT. “With our solution, mobile operators can address multiple critical questions about the viability and performance of their carrier aggregation approach, including usage, performance, efficacy, and quality.

Casa Systems expands executive team

Casa Systems appointed Colin Kincaid as Chief Product Officer (CPO) and Phil Paro as Chief Accounting Officer (CAO).

Kincaid joins Casa Systems by way of Cisco where he most recently served as the Chief Technology Officer of Cisco’s Global Service Provider business. 

Paro previously served as Director, Global Controller at, a global leader in weather intelligence, where he successfully managed a global team overseeing all financial functions, executed buy-side financial due diligence, and collaborated with executive teams to accelerate business growth. His career highlights include prior experience at Fuze and Actifio, as well as several public companies including Fleetmatics, Hologic and Acme Packet.