Chorus shows off 25 gigabit per second retail fibre broadband

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Chorus shows off 25 gigabit per second retail fibre broadband
Kurt Rodgers demonstrates 25 GPON.

Broadband infrastructure wholesaler Chorus has demonstrated fibre to the premises service that is rated at 25 gigabits per second, running over its existing passive optical fibre (PON) network.

The demonstration in Auckland achieved 21.4 Gbps throughput, tested simultaneously on the same strand of fibre that ran an 8 Gbps symmetric HyperFibre connection, and a 900/550 Mbps UFB link.

Chorus showed the asymmetric 25/10 Gbps variant, and the standard allows for a fully symmetric service with 25 Gbps in both download and upload directions.

Nokia is Chorus's equipment supplier for the Ultrafast Broadband (UFB) fibre to residential and business premises network that the wholesaler has rolled out the last few years, in partnership with the New Zealand government that is part funding the project.

Chorus uses Nokia's Lightspan FX and MX access nodes for multiple types of fibre service, including standard GPON, the XGS-PON behind HyperFibre, point-to-point Ethernet, and envisages the 25 GPON service to run on it as well.

It is based on the Quillion chip set line cards, which Nokia says are 50 per cent more energy efficient than earlier models.

Currently, Chorus has no wholesale 25 GPON product, with its fastest offering topping out at 8/8 Gbps HyperFibre.

The wholesaler expects to develop a 25 GPON based services within the next two to three years, with a Nokia optical network termination unit that supports either 25/25 Gbps or 25/10 Gbps options.

Kurt Rodgers, network strategy manager at Chorus, said the faster broadband service would come into its own for industrial metaverse applications, the Internet of Things, and low-latency cloud connectivity.

The 25 GPON service uses a single wavelength, with Chorus's test set up using 1358 nanometres for the downstream, and Nokia's systems supporting three options from 1286 to 1300 nm for the upstream, for co-existence with other services running over the same fibre pair.

Chorus chief technology officer Ewen Powell said the 25 GPON service demonstrated "a future-proofed technology."

Although two-wavelength 50 Gbps service is appearing as a choice for providers, with 100 GPON on the horizon, Chorus is betting that the 25 Gbps variant will offer the best cost benefit overall for providers, as it can use existing optics equipment.

Nokia said it is possible to use some 25 GPON components when upgrading to 50 Gbps, but new and more expensive transmitters are required to avoid signal distortion.

The technology is backed by a multi-source agreement among ten communications industry providers and vendors in Asia and the Asia-Pacific, including Australia's NBN Co. 

Update June 7: Clarification that Chorus demonstrated the 25/10 Gbps GPON service.

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