Boston Financial District skyline 320Verizon planning business customers in 2017. Vincent O’Byrne doesn't believe 10 gig down, 2.5 up is enough for Verizon's future. He has begun trials of 40 gig down, 10 gig up NG-PON2 with Calix and Adtran, with the intent to start purchasing within a year. Boston's new fiber network would be a natural place for them; Verizon would be able to offer 10 gig inexpensively to the giant companies in Boston's financial district. The same gear will probably be natural for Verizon's 2018 test of 5G highband, which will need massive backhaul. mmWaves do not go far and will need cells every few hundred meters.

The same gear will probably be natural for Verizon's 2018 test of 5G highband, which will need massive backhaul. mmWaves do not go far and will need cells every few hundred meters.

Also called TWDM PON, the OLT delivers 4 wavelengths at 10 gig each. Calix says they can bond them, to deliver 40 gig to a customer.

Alcatel introduced an early unit, offering to sell it as a 10 gig box that could be upgraded to 40 gig when needed. 

The cost obstacle has been the laser, which needs to be able to tune to any of the four (and eventually 8) possible frequencies. Adtran has developed their own tunable laser, which they say will bring down the cost "by an order of magnitude." 

The industry was amazed that Nokia Alcatel was not invited to the lab trials. They were an early leader in this technology and are a primary Verizon supplier. Verizon may be sending a message to Nokia and Cisco to "get with the SDN wave or ..."

Adtran and Calix are throwing everything they have at software defined networks. Both manage the NG-PON2 with SDN. Adtran did a great demo of how that works. 

When the cost comes down, this will also offer homes 10 gig.





There's an excellent introduction to NG-PON2 at Altice Labs/Portugal Telecom. 

News Release

Verizon begins lab testing NG-PON2 technology

Ericsson/Calix and ADTRAN selected for technology trial

NEW YORK -- As Verizon advances toward implementing new technology on its fiber optic infrastructure, the company has reached a critical juncture in its RFP (Request For Proposals) process by tapping two companies to begin testing NG-PON2 (next generation passive optical network) equipment in Verizon’s Innovation Lab in Waltham, Mass.

Starting this month, Verizon will begin initial testing with equipment from Ericsson (in partnership with Calix) and ADTRAN. Testing will focus on several features of NG-PON2, including tuning performance, ability to carry residential and business services on the same platform, and interoperability and conformance testing to meet Verizon ONT specifications.

“When it comes to NG-PON2, ADTRAN and Ericsson/Calix have developed new designs and some novel, yet different, approaches that put them at the forefront of the industry,” said Vincent O’Byrne, Ph.D., director of network planning for Verizon.

Verizon is assessing this next-generation technology to provide increased speeds and functionality to customers on its Fios network. NG-PON2 technology supports up to 40G of total capacity and up to 10G speeds per customer, both upstream and downstream, over a single fiber – a tenfold increase over some of the current speeds in the industry. Using NG-PON2 technology, the company plans to initially deploy a number of business services in 2017, followed by residential services as the technology matures and the market demands.

This technology allows Verizon to easily increase system capacity by adding wavelengths to meet the demand for traffic drivers such as ultra high definition video, virtual reality applications and cloud services. By implementing this advanced technology without having to change the current underlying fiber optic infrastructure, additional traffic can be carried cost effectively. Verizon also can improve flexibility and resiliency using NG-PON2, because traffic can be shifted amongst multiple wavelengths without impacting customers.

Last year the ITU-T (International Telecommunications Union Telecommunications Standardization Sector) approved NG-PON2 specifications, paving the way to establish NG-PON2 as the next step in PON technology.

In 2015, Verizon announced it had successfully completed field testing of NG-PON2 technology.

Calix and Ericsson Team to Bring NG-PON2 to Verizon


Calix AXOS and NG-PON2 fulfill promise of Unified Access


PETALUMA, CA – July 20, 2016 – Calix, Inc. (NYSE: CALX), the world leader in enabling next generation service delivery with an unmatched subscriber experience, today announced that Verizon has invited Calix and its long-time partner Ericsson to test NG-PON2 (Next Generation Passive Optical Network Two) solutions in Verizon’s Innovation Lab in Waltham, MA, commencing in July 2016 as part of the next steps in the company's RFP evaluation of NG-PON2.

This announcement is a definitive moment in the evolution of PON technology, providing clear validation of NG-PON2 as the next-generation technology of choice for fiber access networks. Since the standardization work culminated in finalization of the technical standards in October 2015, NG-PON2 has rapidly gained momentum in the industry.

To ready the technology for mass deployment, Calix has used its award-winning AXOS platform to lead the way with advanced technology demonstrations and interoperability work. Starting in late 2015 and throughout 2016, Calix has publicly demonstrated advanced NG-PON2 features, such as technology co-existence and wavelength mobility, and is to date, the only company to have publicly demonstrated bonded NG-PON2 delivering service speeds of up to 40 Gbps over a single fiber connection. (Click for NG-PON2 channel bonding video.)

Further, Calix has been a leader in the interoperability standards work at Full Service Access Network (FSAN) group, acting as co-editor of the PON PMD Layer (Physical Media Dependent) Conformance Test Plan. Recently, Calix successfully tested activation, provisioning over OMCI (ONU Management and Control Interface), and passing line-rate traffic using NG-PON2.

Calix has a long held vision of a Unified Access infrastructure, serving both business and residential subscribers. The Calix architectural approach has always supported this vision. As a result, Calix fiber access customers have benefited from industry-leading efficiency both in installed equipment costs and on-going operational savings. The Calix AXOS NG-PON2 solution extends this leadership by expanding the capacity, resilience, and operational efficiency of fiber networks while allowing service providers to keep pace with the needs of business and residential subscribers over a common infrastructure.

“For over a decade, Calix has led the way in fiber access innovation,” said Michel Langlois, Calix senior vice president of systems products. “oUR leadership in innovation has led to this exciting opportunity with Verizon, and we look forward to working closely with Verizon. Our AXOS NG-PON2 solution is built on software defined access (SDA) principles to be fast, always on, and simple, and aligns perfectly with Verizon’s Fios vision of the future.”

Verizon narrows NG-PON2 choices to Ericsson/Calix and ADTRAN

Verizon logo in building

Verizon says it is ready to advance to final lab trials of NG-PON2 equipment before deciding on a supplier. A team of Ericsson and Calix will face off against ADTRAN in Verizon's Waltham, MA, facility. A Verizon source said the results of the trials will determine whether the service provider selects one or both competitors to deliver NG-PON2 optical line terminals (OLTs) and optical network terminals (ONTs) ahead of an expected 2017 deployment start.

Verizon has selected NG-PON2 as its follow-on fiber-optic broadband access technology to GPON. The architecture uses a time- and wavelength-division multiplexing (TWDM-PON) scheme to support transmission of four wavelengths per fiber; each wavelength can support symmetrical 10 Gbps services (see "The Bright Future of TWDM-PON and Wavelength Unbundling"). Future versions of the technology are expected to provide even higher capacity, via more wavelengths, greater transmission rates, or both.

According to Vincent O'Byrne, director of network planning for Verizon, the service provider favors the architecture over alternatives such as the earlier XG-PON1 because of its potential flexibility and scalability (see "XG-PON1 10G GPON may not be enough for Verizon").

Verizon has long had an interest in NG-PON2. It issued a request for information (RFI) surrounding the state of NG-PON2 development two years ago and conducted field tests of the technology last year (see and "Verizon tests NG-PON2 FTTP network ahead of RFP"). Satisfied with what it had discovered, the company issued a request for proposals (RFP) last October, which closed early this year.

O'Byrne said six companies responded to the RFP. He declined to identify them beyond the remaining competitors.

Overall, O'Byrne said that Verizon will evaluate the Ericsson/Calix and ADTRAN offerings based on such factors as their performance, roadmap toward future capabilities, and compatibility with existing systems. He highlighted several performance issues that will receive close scrutiny:

  • Wavelength tunability: As the NG-PON2 architecture supports multiple wavelengths, the receiver at the ONT will have to tune among them to select the appropriate transmission. Tunability also is important for fault reconciliation. So tuning speed will be critical; the closer to 50 msec, the better. While some vendors have touted the ability of NG-PON2 to enable operators to separate business and residential services on separate wavelengths, O'Byrne said he could foresee carrying residential and business services on the same wavelength, particularly in the presence of a network fault or where bandwidth requirements don't demand separate lambdas. Verizon also will leverage tunability for load balancing, he said.
  • Scalability: Verizon expects to use NG-PON2 for the foreseeable future. Therefore, O'Byrne says he's interested in the ability to combine wavelength transmissions through a form of bonding. Thus, an ONT could accept transmissions greater than 10 Gbps. The ITU-T is working on specifications for this function.
  • Interoperability: Verizon wants its NG-PON2 OLTs to work with ONTs from multiple vendors. O'Byrne says Verizon does not want to repeat its experiences with GPON, in which it occasionally has found it difficult to meet custom requirements via purpose-built ONTs because their GPON OLTs won't support them. Along these lines, Verizon will expect its NG-PON2 OLT to work with a new open ONU management and control interface (OMCI) it is creating. Similarly, the operator would like to see NG-PON2 OLTs from different vendors work together more seamlessly than GPON OLTs do now.

O'Byrne says the lab trials should last approximately three months. He said he's unsure whether field trials will follow; having conducted field trials already, additional field trails would only be necessary if Verizon has unanswered questions at the end of the lab trials, he said.

O'Byrne declined to state whether Verizon hopes to go with both suppliers or just one. He noted that the company previously has selected a pair of vendors for both BPON and GPON equipment.

Verizon will focus its initial NG-PON2 deployments on support of business services. O'Byrne noted that businesses would more readily use such bandwidth. He also said the first round of NG-PON2 technology likely would be too expensive to meet residential service business models.

NG-PON2 Technology Forum sets board of directors


The NG-PON2 Technology Forum, established this past April to promote the adoption of the next-generation fiber to the premises (FTTP) technology, has announced its board of directors. The group includes representatives from both the service provider and technology development communities.

NG-PON2, based on the ITU-T G.989 series of recommendations, supports delivery of multiple wavelengths, each capable of symmetrical 10-Gbps transmission in the current generation of systems (see "ITU-T approves XGS-PON, amends NG-PON2 specifications"). Alongside XGS-PON, which supports only one wavelength of symmetrical 10 Gbps, NG-PON2 offers an upgrade path for current GPON FTTP fiber-optic broadband access networks.

The NG-PON2 Technology Forum's mission undoubtedly received a boost when Verizon announced that it was moving toward final lab trials of the technology with a pair of potential suppliers (see "Verizon narrows NG-PON2 choices to Ericsson/Calix and ADTRAN"). Not surprisingly, the forum's board includes a director from Verizon. The full roster includes:

  • President and Founder Bernd Hesse, team lead, engagement practices for Access, Mobile Backhaul and Transport Networks at Ericsson
  • Director Vincent O'Byrne, director of Verizon's FTTP Architecture and Design Group
  • Director and Co-founder Michael Horn, vice president of strategic alliances for Calix
  • Director Bruno Cornaglia, fixed access senior manager for the Vodafone Group.
  • Director Jun-ichi Kani, senior research engineer, supervisor, and Distinguished Researcher in NTT Access Network Service Systems Laboratories of NTT Corp.
  • Director Paulo Mão-Cheia, head of Unit GPON, FTTx and QoS Probing at Altice Labs
  • Director Robert Conger, associate vice president for cloud and portfolio strategy at ADTRAN.

The board has issued an open call to operators, technologists, suppliers, and their companies to join the non-profit, volunteer organization. Membership benefits include exposure to technology innovators, the opportunity to share ideas with their peers, and the chance to help steer and optimize the adoption of NG-PON2 technologies, according to the board. While there is no cost to join, members may be asked attend industry events where the NG-PON2 Forum will participate.

Those interested in more information may contact Hesse at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..