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Created 6/23/2009

Broadband Library: Two Sides to Every Story: Winter 2008 (December)

Broadband Library is distributed quarterly to all members of the Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers (SCTE). Beginning in early 2007, our column "Two Sides to Every Story" has used opposing pages to present contrasting viewpoints on a cable/telecom industry topic.

Our column in the Winter 2008 issue describes some problems cable operators have had in detecting customer problems, and by contrast discusses the new technologies telephone companies are deploying for remote monitoring.

In Don't Make It Hard for Me To Defend You, Sandy describes a recent experience our daughter and son-in-law had with their cable service. When the power company replaced a telephone pole in front of their house, they lost their video, high-speed Internet, and voice service. Diagnosing the problem required a lengthy phone call, and they had already restored service themselves by the time the cable company arrived. Sandy asked "When a triple-play house loses all their service, can't automated tools flag it and proactively deploy repair?"

In Telcos are Turning a Disadvantage into an Advantage, Dave describes the technologies telcos are deploying to manage triple-play services. While cable operators can use their broadband coaxial cable to communicate over the wide area network with digital devices such as cable modems and set top boxes, telcos depend on a network in the home. For IPTV they use data-over-coax technologies such as HomePNA or MoCA to connect set top boxes to the home router. They have developed an extensive suite of protocols known as TR-069 for remote management of their CPE devices. These protocols are being adopted for other applications such as WiMAX and femtocells. Dave says "TR-069 is fast becoming the global standard for remote management of triple-play services."

Next: Our column in the Fall 2008 issue is focused on tru2way--a "virtual cable box" that can be embedded in consumer electronics equipment.