Designing Tomorrow’s Wi-Fi — with ARRIS CTO Charles Cheevers

Wi-Fi is the glue that brings connected experiences together in our homes—-from streaming video to online gaming, browsing the Web, and more. It’s the foundation for tomorrow’s entertainment too. But, how will it scale to new experiences like 4K, multiscreen HD, and fiber Internet speeds? How can we ensure that it’s reliable when so many new services depend on it to work perfectly, everywhere, all the time?

Our CPE CTO Charles Cheevers, reviews these topics and more. Check out his videos, below:

Mile High View for SCTE 2014

And we’re off… SCTE began yesterday and our end-to-end cable portfolio is at the center of this year’s conference, which has attracted more than 10,000 attendees to Denver this week.

We have several unique experiences on display—from new IP network solutions to our Wi-Fi Connected Home portfolio, network DVRs, D3.1 solutions and HEVC/ Ultra HD set-tops.

Check out some of our pictures below, but for the best view, be sure to stop by our booth this week (#1764)!

The Quest to Send 4K Video over Wi-Fi

Charles Cheevers, CTO, CPE business at ARRIS

Almost daily, we see new evidence that people are video junkies—watching, posting, and downloading more video to more devices. Yet, we commonly expect our home Wi-Fi network to carry these experiences seamlessly.

Our ARRIS Consumer Entertainment Index found that almost two-thirds of us have problems streaming or downloading video. Whether it’s a slow connection, streaming delays or a frozen or blank screen—these issues can be maddening.

Wi-Fi can barely handle MPEG-4 video bandwidth, so how are we going to support 4K video transmission over the coming years?

At this year’s SCTE, I hope to shed some light on that solution. I’m outlining my thoughts on various technologies and directions being considered to ensure that the Wi-Fi network has both the ability and quality of service to provide a reliable solution. I’ll also cover ways we can pre-empt the congestion at 5GHz and show how software-oriented solutions can help facilitate the kind of quality we need to get new pay-TV video services over Wi-Fi.

Specifically, I’ll review the following key areas surrounding this topic:

  • 5GHz spectrum map and what happens when devices try and carve out some deterministic throughput rates;
  • Types of services and devices competing for this airtime;
  • Challenges and main goals ahead for the IEEE High Efficiency Task Force as it tries to create new wireless protocols to handle Gigabit Wi-Fi solutions in the home;
  • Convergence of LTE and Wi-Fi ;
  • Role of network managed Wi-Fi resources and airtime;
  • Emerging ideas around SDN, and SON-based assists to improving Wi-Fi performance.

I previewed this topic on SCTE’s site, but welcome you to join me and Comcast at Thursday’s 12:45 p.m. “Wi-Fi: The Quest for Quality” discussion. Look forward to seeing you at SCTE.

ARRIS Bob Stanzione Keynotes WICT’s “Tech It Out” Conference in Denver

TIO.Email.Signature RGBThis week at SCTE, everyone’s talking about the future of cable. But in the closing keynote of WICT’s (Women in Cable Telecommunications) “Tech It Out” Conference on Tuesday, our CEO Bob Stanzione will speak about one related topic that often goes unrecognized in that conversation: tomorrow’s engineers.

Tech It Out is about fostering leadership among women in technology, and this charter resonates with Bob’s belief that we have an obligation to inspire tomorrow’s engineers. To paraphrase his words, “We have a responsibility to foster a diversity of thought, starting with children and students—they’ll be engineering our future, so it’s vital that they represent the best that we have to offer.”

But, as Bob will point out, that isn’t the case in engineering, where women are underrepresented to our disadvantage. In his keynote, he’ll talk about the constricted pipeline of female engineers; cover some of the underlying challenges—like the education system, social paradigms, and media influence; and map out the necessary changes for our industry achieve the diversity it deserves.

As Sandy Howe, our SVP of Global Marketing, outlines here, there are many opportunities for women. On Tuesday, Bob will expand on that topic and talk more about the vital role that women play in inventing the future.

You can also find us at SCTE in booth #1764. 

Challenges Delivering Multiscreen Linear TV Services

John_Ulm-photo-full

John Ulm, ARRIS

Consumers want TV on any screen. The cornerstone of service providers’ IP video migration is delivering this fully managed multiscreen experience.

Our ARRIS 2014 Consumer Entertainment Index found two-thirds of global consumers are interested in a service that allows them to watch any TV program from any device in any location. Almost half of smartphone owners watch TV on their smartphone for at least a few minutes a week, and nearly two-thirds of tablet owners do the same.

Meeting the challenge of a wide range of bit rates, for varying screen sizes, and varying network conditions requires flexible Adaptive Bit Rate (ABR) protocols. However, ABR protocols introduce their own challenges, including breaking the bandwidth capacity bank by requiring a unique stream per screen.

Multicast-assisted ABR has become the solution of choice to manage IP video scalability. To better understand the need and issues around implementing this solution, ARRIS analyzed live viewing behavior across more than 100,000 set-tops for intervals of more than a month. This allowed us to accurately quantify viewership and multicast gains. With this knowledge, we informed a model that allows operators to accurately deploy multicast-assisted ABR.

Our research led to the discovery of potentially significant issues around channel change behavior. In my SCTE paper and during Wednesday’s 9:30 a.m. panel on “Multicast & Unicast: The Best of Both Worlds to Enable Multiscreen Video,” I’ll discuss several mechanisms for mitigating the channel challenge issue.

I’ll also touch on the significant bandwidth capacity benefits of Multicast-assisted ABR, but noting the challenges around channel change events when implementing such a solution. And most importantly, I’ll highlight how these can be addressed for true IP video migration to be successful.

I hope you’ll join me at Wednesday’s session, and I look forward to seeing you in Denver!

SCTE 2014 CCAP interoperability demo highlights DOCSIS 3.1 leadership

If you’re attending SCTE 2014, don’t miss our live demonstration of the industry’s leading CCAP E6000_360__1solution: the ARRIS E6000 Converged Edge Router (CER).

We’ll showcase its future-proof design through an interoperability demo on DOCSIS 3.1 and pre-silicon DOCSIS 3.1 test products—specifically, showing the test products acquiring downstream signals from the E6000. ARRIS is working with Intel and STMicroelectronics – and using a signal analyzer from Keysight (formerly Agilent Technology Electronic Measurement BU).

Our demo highlights the E6000’s extensibility in creating pathways to CCAP interoperability.  Thanks to ARRIS’s software leadership, the evolution to DOCSIS 3.1 is seamless. Operators can implement DOCSIS 3.1 in the downstream through the purchase of a simple software upgrade, avoiding expensive and often time-consuming hardware replacement.

Stop by the ARRIS booth at SCTE, #1764, and check out our interoperability demo. We’d love to answer any and all of your CCAP migration questions.

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