3Com Cable Modem Gains CableLabs® Certified™ Status
Louisville, Colorado, April 29, 1999—Cable Television Laboratories, Inc., (CableLabs®) has certified external cable modems from 3Com for retail sale.
This is the second certification wave for cable modem suppliers this year. Modem evaluations are continuing and it is expected that more suppliers will gain certification this year in future waves. The next certification wave will begin May 12.
There now are three modem suppliers whose products have been certified for retail sale. In addition to 3Com they are Toshiba and Thomson Consumer Electronics, who were certified in March. Also in March, CableLabs announced that Cisco Systems� CMTS (headend equipment) had been qualified as complying with the CableLabs specification.
The retail certified modems are identifiable by a "CableLabs® Certified™ "seal. This seal will inform consumers and cable operators that a modem complies with the CableLabs� cable modem specification. It also states that it will communicate (interoperate) with qualified cable system headends, which soon will be deployed in a substantial number of systems worldwide.
There currently are nearly 50 different deployments by cable operators using cable modem products from the more than one dozen companies seeking CableLabs Certified status for the modems. "We truly are pleased with the level of support we are receiving from all these manufacturers," said CableLabs President and CEO Dr. Richard R. Green.
"The cable industry�s strong support for high-speed deployment via the retail market is evidenced by its having achieved certification and qualification for suppliers in such a short time," said David Fellows, chair of the cable industry Certification Review Committee.
"Certification of additional suppliers in this second consecutive wave is a great indication of success for the CableLabs open certification process," said executive consultant Rouzbeh Yassini, who heads the cable modem effort for CableLabs. "This direct technical feedback relationship between suppliers and CableLabs has enabled high quality retail products faster than ever to market based on additional vendors now being certified," he added.
Cable modems are used to provide high-speed Internet and data access. Cable modems are always connected and unlike telephone industry modems, do not require re-dialing to a service provider. In addition, consumers do not tie up their telephone line for Internet surfing when using a cable modem to access the Internet because the connection is via two-way cable. The certified cable modems can coexist in cable systems with existing, proprietary cable modems.
Manufacturers who receive CableLabs certification for their high-speed cable modems have successfully completed an extensive series of interoperability tests supported by CableLabs membership. Modems were tested against headend equipment supplied by four different manufacturers. Qualification evaluation of headend equipment (CMTS) is ongoing.
As part of the certification test process, suppliers were asked to work in
CableLabs facilities in pre-market, pre-competitive testing and evaluation in order to prove their compliance with the industry-supported program and technology. As part of the certification process, suppliers do self-testing of their products at their own facilities prior to submission to CableLabs.
CableLabs certification focuses on how well suppliers� cable modem and headend equipment adheres to the defined interface specifications. The existing DOCSIS cable modem architecture is enriched with high-speed data capability of up to 38 million bits per second throughput per standard cable channel, with the flexibility of enabling each broadband service provider to customize multiple service tiers. In addition to the unprecedented speed, cable modems also offer ease of installation, robust reliability, and data encryption of all information conveyed by the certified modems.
CableLabs has managed the interoperable cable modem process, previously known as Data over Cable Service Interface Specification (DOCSIS) for the past three years. In that time, the effort has achieved cable and vendor consensus on a series of definitions of key interconnection points in a cable data distribution network. It also has achieved North American (by the Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers) and international (by the International Telecommunications Union) standardization using key elements of DOCSIS.
About CableLabs: Cable Television Laboratories (www.cablelabs.com) was founded in 1988 by members of the cable television industry. A non-profit research and development consortium, CableLabs delivers innovations that enable cable operators to be the providers of choice in their markets. Cable operators from around the world are members. CableLabs maintains web sites at www.cablelabs.com; www.packetcable.com; www.cablemodem.com; www.cablenet.org, and www.opencable.com.
CableLabs® is a registered trademark of Cable Television Laboratories, Inc. Other CableLabs marks are listed at http://www.cablelabs.com/certqual/trademarks. All other marks are the property of their respective owners.