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Nokia and Proximus announce fibre breakthrough

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New line cards based on the Quillion chipset allow existing physical infrastructure to run at up to 25Gbps.

Nokia’s new multi-passive optical network (PON) line cards that mean operators can introduce new PON options into the existing physical infrastructure.

As well as saving time and money on deployment, it also promises PON speeds of up to 25Gbps.

The two demonstrated the first link using the new tech to connect the Port of Antwerp and Proximus’ central office in the city centre (pictured). It ran at over 20Gbps.

At scale next year

During a Q&A with press, it seems more work is needed before commercial deployment at scale, which is expected in 2022.

Proximus has 45.9% of the Belgian fibre market and plan to add 10% more coverage annually to reach 70% of households by 2028.

It currently stands at the bottom of the Fibre Council Europe’s latest ranking with just over 1% fibre penetration as of September 2020.

Its fibre infrastructure will be available on a wholesale basis as outlined in Proximus’ Inspire 2022 strategy to avoid fiber overbuild.

In the meantime the incumbent operator is working with Nokia to improve the performance and longevity of VDSL.

Unlimited potential

Rupert Wood, Research Director for Fiber Networks at Analysys Mason, said: “Today’s 25G PON achievement demonstrates the unlimited potential of fibre.

"This next evolution in fibre technology will provide enterprises with greater than 10Gbps connectivity and the capacity needed to support 5G transport along with future next generation services such as massive scale virtual reality and real time digital twins.”

Federico Guillén, President Network Infrastructure Nokia, said: “Ten years ago our companies launched the technology which enabled a switch to HD TV. Today we make history again with a network that is 200x faster…powered by Nokia’s Quillion chipset, which supports three generations of PON technologies.

“Quillion has been adopted by more than 100 operators since its launch last year and all operators deploying the Quillion based GPON and XGS-PON solution today have the capabilities to easily evolve to 25G PON.”