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28 posts categorized "EveryWire.com"

CopperGate Joins HomeGrid’s Board of Directors

July 28, 2009 3:07 PM in EveryWire , EveryWire.com , G.hn , Home Networking , HomeGrid Forum , Wired Home Networking  | 0 comments  | 0 TrackBack

HomeGrid Forum has just announced that it has recruited CopperGate Communications to become a member of its Board of Directors.

CopperGate brings to the table the big Kahunah telco, AT&T and 39 other service providers around the world who use the company’s chip sets.  As an AT&T U-verse customer, I know their stuff works.  It distributes traffic in the house and makes upgrades and remote service calls a breeze.

In the why history is so important department…. a little over a year ago, CopperGate bought the AV powerline technology of Conexant, giving the company a big footprint in coax, phoneline and powerline. 

My take is that CopperGate has been heading toward G.hn all along, and now that they are on the HomeGrid Board, they bring a ton of credibility to the organization’s vision of bringing next-generation, unified coaxial, phone line and powerline home networking standard to frution.

 

Senator Kay Bailey Hutchinson Introduces the Connecting America Act of 2009 (Hmmm…. Why Not The Wired Home Networking Act of 2009?)

July 15, 2009 10:07 AM in EveryWire , EveryWire.com , G.hn , Home Networking , HomeGrid Forum , Wired Home Networking  | 0 comments  | 0 TrackBack

Telecompetitor is reporting on Republican Senator, Kay Bailey Hutchinson, introducing legislation known as the Connecting America Act of 2009 to help boost broadband in un-served and underserved markets.

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What’s different about this pending legislation is that current grant and loan program underway through the broadband stimulus program, Hutchinson’s approach uses tax credits for companies investing in broadband infrastructure.

Ms. Hutchinson is not only an astute politician, but she’s just announced that she is going to be running for Governor of Texas against current Governor Rick Perry.

·      Given this legislation and given her desire to be Governor, I have a hat tip to the Senator:  reposition the legislation by calling it the Wired Home Networking Act of 2009.  

·      Team up with AT&T (who just happens to be run by a Republican supporting Chairman and CEO-Randall Stephenson) and whose company, Texas-based AT&T just happens to be a big supporter of G.hn, and promote tax credits for home owners who buy and invest in G.hn-based products. 

·      Maybe team up with HomeGrid Forum’s Board Member, Best Buy, and give home-owners a sales tax free holiday for one year on any G.hn-based products.  

Politics aside, Senator Hutchinson could bring a breath of fresh air into the conversation on the Governor’s race and advance the ITU’s new standard for home networking.

I’d welcome a meeting with the Senator so I can further elaborate. 

So, if you’re listening, Senator Hutchinson, how about a meeting anywhere in Texas?

HomeGrid Forum and DLNA Connect, Bringing Critical Mass to the G.hn Standard.

July 13, 2009 3:07 PM in DLNA , EveryWire , EveryWire.com , Home Networking , HomeGrid Forum  | 0 comments  | 0 TrackBack

Picture 1 

Back in January at CES 2009, I remember seeing the Digital Living Network Alliance  (DLNA) everywhere. Homegrid Forum

Sony. JVC.  Panasonic.  Samsumg.  Pionneer,  and more.   Name the big names and they were all on board the Digital Living Network Alliance, the non-profit trade group promoting the United Nations’ International Telecommunication Union’s (ITU-T) G.hn standardization efforts.

Today, HomeGrid Forum is announcing a liaison agreement with the DLNA setting the stage for collaboration between the two organizations and the approval of G.hn as a DLNA-recognized Physical Layer technology for the next-generation of home networking products.  You may download the news release here:

Download HGF - DLNA release FNL

This is big deal because it brings big time critical mass to an installed base of more than 5,000 DLNA Certified® devices worldwide, who can now look to HomeGrid and DLNA in helping them move up the wired home networking food chain.

Now Available: A Service Provider's Perspective on G.hn

May 18, 2009 2:05 PM in Alan Weinkrantz , AT&T , EveryWire , EveryWire.com , G.hn , Home Networking , HomeGrid Forum , Tom Starr , U-verse , Wired Home Networking  | 1 comments  | 0 TrackBack

The service provider landscape continues to dramatically change, with growing emphasis on increasingly complex multi-play offerings that include Internet Protocol-based voice, video, and high-speed data. 

These services need to not only be delivered to the home, but throughout the home to everywhere they are needed.  

What role will the service provider play in whole-home networking?  And what do these companies require from the next-generation wired networking technologies that will come to market?  Find out by downloading the new webinar from HomeGrid Forum. 

WHAT: This new webinar will deliver a service provider’s perspective on next-generation wired home networking, including:

·       Technical requirements for a next-generation standard

·       Critical improvements necessary for adoption

·       Considerations in transitioning from current- to next-generation standards

·       Differences in implementation in single and multi-dwelling units

·       Advantages of single vs. multiple standards/approaches

WHO: The webinar is presented by Tom Starr, lead member of technical staff at AT&T, and Mario Finocchiaro, director of business development for Aware, Inc. and secretary of the HomeGrid Forum.  (Note:  I recently had the chance to interview AT&T's Tom Starr, Lead Member of Technical Staff, which you may read here.)

     WHERE: To download the webinar and other materials from HomeGrid Forum, visit the organization’s Resource Library at http://www.homegridforum.org/resource_library


WHEN: The webinar is available now.

Guest Blogger, DS2's Chano Gomez Writes: Top Ten Things You Need to Know About the New G.hn Standard

May 16, 2009 1:05 AM in 802.11n , Alan Weinkrantz , Chano Gomez , DS2 , EveryWire , EveryWire.com , G.hn , Home Networking , Wired Home Networking  | 0 comments  | 0 TrackBack

DS2's Chano Gomez, contributes this post which is re-published by permission from his company's blog.

Readers of this blog already know that G.hn (also known as G.9960) is the new standard developed by ITU (the same group of experts that developed the highly succesful ADSL, VDSL and VDSL2 standards) for high-speed networking over existing home wiring (power lines, phone lines and coaxial cable). We have written about how fast G.hn is, about the various organizations that support G.hn, and about the major applications targeted by G.hn.

What we have not done before is providing a comprehensive overview of the most important advantages provided by the standard. So, that's the goal of this post.

#1: G.hn is faster than any existing wired home networking technology

G.hn will be fast. As we detailed in this post ("How fast can G.hn be?"), with its default setting G.hn can provide a line data rate over coaxial cable of up to 843.75 Mbps (with actual Ethernet throughput at 762.05 Mbps), and includes optimizations that can support line data rates up to 1.02 Gbit/s.

This does not mean that all G.hn products will operate at 1 Gbit/s. In fact, it's very likely that initial products will support lower data rates, and that future products will increase the maximum data rate, all without having to change the standard and without breaking interoperability.

Not only that: G.hn supports the concept of "profiles", which will allow silicon vendors to design devices with lower complexity and lower data rates for specific applications. We will see G.hn-compatible devices for applications like Energy management and Home automation, operating at low data rates, while maintaining compatibility with high-speed G.hn products.

#2: G.hn works over any type of home wire

Unlike other specifications that only support one type of wire (power lines only, or coaxial cable only), G.hn specifies a unified Physical Layer and Data Link Layer that can operate over multiple wire types (power lines, phone lines and coaxial cables).

This blog post ("Why do we need a unified standard at all?") explains the benefits of having a single PHY/MAC standard for multiple wires, and why Service providers have pushed for G.hn to support it.

Does that mean that G.hn will not be optimized for any specific wire? No. In fact, G.hn includes parameters that are specifically optimized for each medium. For example, key elements of the PHY/DLL, such as OFDM sub-carrier spacing, the Forward Error Correction (FEC) or the ARQ(retransmission) mechanisms.

G.hn will outperform any of the existing wired home networking technologies over any medium.

#3: G.hn is supported by multiple silicon vendors

Unlike with existing wired home networking technologies, which traditionally only have had a single silicon vendor providing actual products (severely limiting customer choice), multiple silicon and IP vendors (including DS2) have already announced support for the G.hn standard in their future products. And we are not talking about start-ups here. These are serious vendors who have shipped several millions of chips into the home networking and DSL markets.

Having multiple silicon vendors offering interoperable G.hn products will create healthy competition in the marketplace, will accelerate technical innovation and will ensure that customers get the best products at the best possible price.

#4: G.hn is supported by multiple Industry Groups

HomeGrid Forum is the organization set up specifically to promote adoption of G.hn and to ensure interoperability and compliance with the standard.

But HomeGrid Forum is not the only organization supporting G.hn: On February 2009, three home networking organizations that promoted previously incompatible technologies (CEPCA, HomePNA and UPA), announced that they had agreed to work with Homegrid Forum to promote G.hn as the single next-generation standard for wired home networking, and to work to ensure coexistence with existing products in the market.

#5: Most products based on G.hn will provide compatibility options with existing home networking technologies

G.hn, by itself, is not directly interoperable with existing wired home networking technologies. There is a reason for this: there are at least 5 completely different legacy specification. As this article says ("On the issue of G.hn's FEC"):

If G.hn tried to be compatible with all of the existing wired technologies that have shipped millions of devices into the market, then it would have 5 different modulation schemes, 5 FEC schemes, 5 security schemes, 5 MACs, 5 of everything. That would be the best way to make it the most complex standard ever designed. But G.hn is about simplicity (one PHY and one MAC that works anywhere) so the group decided early on that they didn't want to follow that path.

So, what about the installed base of existing products? Do we have to replace them? Fortunately not. Those G.hn vendors with an installed base of legacy home networking technologies have announced plans to develop "dual mode" chips that will be compatible with G.hn and with legacy specification. DS2 was the first vendor to announce this, which means that products based on the UPA specification will interoperate with future G.hn products from DS2.

#6: G.hn provides state-of-the-art security

G.hn uses AES-128 as the encryption algorithm, and ITU Recommendation X.1035 as the protocol for authentication and key exchange. G.hn security is very strong (much stronger than that provided by many existing systems based on DES and 3DES), and provides an additional advantage to system designers over many other home networking technologies: G.hn products don't need to support a plethora of legacy encryption mechanisms (unlikeIEEE 802.11 products, which usually need to support multiple security schemes, such as WEPTKIP and CCMP).

Having fewer options also means better security, as there are fewer chances to introduce bugs in G.hn implementations.

#7: G.hn will have longer range than most existing home networking technologies

G.hn includes a nice feature specifically designed to extend the range of the network: relaying. Although DS2 products based on the UPAspecification have supported this feature for many years, most existing wired technologies do not support it.

Automatic relaying is a key technology for wide area networks such as Broadband over Powerline networks deployed over utility power lines.

Using this feature, a G.hn "source node" can use an intermediate "relay node" to send data to another "destination node", even if the source and destination nodes are not within direct reach from each other. This feature improves network reach and will allow G.hn to be used in large installations.

#8: G.hn will reduce energy consumption

G.hn will include mechanisms that will allow devices to go into "sleep state" in order to reduce energy consumption and to quickly get back to "active state" as soon as a device needs to send data.

Advanced support for "sleep states" are required to support the latest European Code of Conduct on Energy Consumption of Broadband Equipment.

#9: G.hn will provide reliable communication over noisy home wires

G.hn includes multiple mechanisms to improve reliability over any kind of wire. Of the three wires supported by G.hn, power lines are probably the harshest ones, so the G.hn group has spent a significant amount of time optimizing performance for that case.

How does G.hn handle reliability over noisy power lines?:

  • Forward Error Correction (FEC): G.hn uses a state-of-the-art LDPC code to protect data transmission. Before transmission, LDPC codes add redundancy to the data, which is then used by the receiver to recover the contents of the data even if some of the bits have been corrupted by noise. G.hn selected LDPC (over other options) because it provided the lowest Block Error Rate over the expected range of operation, and because LDPC decoders are easier to implement at high data rates due to their inherent parallelism (which is one of the reasons why LDPC is also used in other high data-rate standards like 10GBase-T Ethernet)
  • Selective ARQ: G.hn implements an ARQ (Automatic Repeat Request) mechanism that re-transmits data frames that have been affected by too many errors.
  • Synchronization with the AC cycle: Noise in powerline is frequently synchronous with the AC cycle. This means that if the AC cycle has a frequency of 60 Hz, noises generated by electric appliances also have a frequency of 60 Hz, or some times twice that (120 Hz). If a device detects a strong noise spike, it's very likely that the same noise spike will show up 1/60 = 16.6 ms later. A G.hn device can take advantage of this and schedule its transmission to avoid this "predictable" noise.

#10: G.hn will provide predictable service to QoS-sensitive applications such as IPTV

Many existing wired (and wireless) networking systems use Medium Access Control mechanisms based on variations of CSMA/CA. One of the advantages of CSMA/CA is its simplicity, but this comes at a cost: because CSMA/CA is collision-based, performance of CSMA/CA-based systems is very dependent on network load and QoS in general cannot be guaranteed. Systems like CSMA/CARP improve this by introducing priority-based access, but the problem still persists when multiple system with the same priority want to use the channel at the same time.

The G.hn MAC is based on a master/slave TDMA architecture, in which a central device ("the domain master") allocates channel access to other "slave" nodes in a predictable manner. Slave nodes can request specific allocations of bandwidth to the domain master, which can implement them by assigning exclusive "contention-free" time slots to each slave.

With this mechanism, G.hn can provide guaranteed bandwidth and latency to applications that have strict QoS requirements, such as IPTV, VoIP or on-line gaming.

U-verse Pre-wired and Part of San Antonio's First Urban Residential High Rise

May 11, 2009 1:05 PM in Alan Weinkrantz , EveryWire , EveryWire.com , G.hn , Home Networking , U-verse , Wired Home Networking  | 0 comments  | 0 TrackBack

In my other life, I have another blog, 3Screens.net, that cover a consumer's view on being an AT&T three-screen customer.

Because I live in San Antonio, I was able to be a trial user of AT&T's IPTV service, U-verse.  Even since AT&T's roll-out of the service, I continue to track what the company is doing.  Now with covering wired home networks and the G.hn standard, I am starting to think about the future opportunities and implications of not only the wired home, but the wired MDU - (multi-dwelling unit) like apartment buildings and condominiums.

San Antonio developer, Ed Cross, has just completed the building of the  first urban high rise apartment building in.  

The Vistana, as the development in known, is pre-wired with AT&T's U-verse.  It's pre-wired not only in each living unit, but in the business center and community game and entertainment facility.

The potential for G.hn is not just for the "home" as we think it.  The potential for G.hn in MDU's is equally compelling.  View the interview here.  

In-Stat and HomeGrid Forum Publish Webinar Addressing Evolution of the Home Network

May 05, 2009 3:05 AM in Alan Weinkrantz , EveryWire , EveryWire.com , G.hn , Home Networking , HomeGrid Forum , In-Stat , Joyce Putscher  | 0 comments  | 0 TrackBack

The market for home networking is rapidly evolving.  It's moving from highly segregated networks -- one for broadcast media services and the other for PC computing -- to much more integrated approaches.  Until now, everyone from consumers to major telecommunications service providers have had competing agendas.  But that's all changing.  

How will these networks evolve over time and what technologies are necessary for truly integrated, next-generation wired in-home networks?  Find out by downloading this new webinar.

 

WHAT:

This new webinar discusses the following:

·         Digital home vision

·         Forecast of home networks and throughput

·         How in-home networks are being driven by competing forces, and the result

·         Trends driving and shaping home networks

·         Opportunities for next-generation wired networks

WHO: The webinar is presented by Joyce Putscher, a Principal Analyst of In-Stat’s Digital Entertainment Group, and Matt Theall, President of the HomeGrid Forum and Technology Strategist focused on wired home networking for Intel's Digital Home Group.

 WHERE: To download the webinar and other materials from HomeGrid Forum, visit the organization’s Resource Library.

 WHEN: The webinar is available now.

 


 

HomeGrid Forum Publishes Whitepaper Describing how G.hn Unifies Home Networking Market

May 01, 2009 11:05 AM in Alan Weinkrantz , EveryWire , EveryWire.com , G.hn , Home Networking , HomeGrid Forum , Wired Home Networking  | 0 comments  | 0 TrackBack

Since the inception of this blog, I do get the occasional naysayer challenging me on compatibility issues with G.hn.  From the get-go, the standard for next-generation home networking being developed by the International Telecommunication Union’s Standardization Sector (ITU-T). was designed to operate over any kind of home wiring, including powerlines, phone lines, and coaxial cables.

As part of the migration path towards a single unifying home networking technology, it’s expected that G.hn networks will need to coexist with several types of existing home networking technologies.  And now, HomeGrid Forum's new whitepaper outlines the compatibility mechanisms between G.hn transceivers and existing, non-ITU-T standard home networking devices, including coexistence and interoperability options.

The white paper is easy to read and understand and includes contributions from industry leaders, some of which have been interviewed on this blog.  These include: Chano Gomez, DS2; Stefano Galli, Panasonic; Barry O'Mahony, Intel Corporation; Vladimir Oksman, Infineon Technologies; and Mario Finocchiaro, Aware.

To download the whitepaper and other materials from HomeGrid Forum, just visit the organization’s resource library at www.homegridforum.org/resource_library.  There is no charge for the white paper and worth reading!

It’s A Small World, After All….

March 16, 2009 1:03 PM in Alan Weinkrantz , CopperGate , EveryWire , EveryWire.com , G.hn , Home Networking , HomePNA , Wired Home Networking  | 0 comments  | 0 TrackBack

Outside of the U.S., consumers in countries large and small alike are looking to be part of the wired home networking revolution.

According to market research firm, Multimedia Research Group, by 2012, North America will have only about 17% share of the total worldwide subscribers (but it will dominate the global market in terms of gross service provider revenues.)

Taking a clue from this data, I think it’s important to look in various parts of the world as to how and where the wired home networking revolution and the deployment of the G.hn standard will take hold.

When I look for indicators, I look at data from market research firms, design wins, new technology, and new product announcements from vendors. In the transition to G.hn, the vendors still have technology-- and a product pipeline to fill.

Case in point:  last week, chip vendor, CopperGate Communications announced a design win with Codetel, the largest telco in the Dominican Republic.  At the other end of the spectrum, today CopperGate is announcing its new CopperGate CG3210M chipset. It is the next generation HomePNA-based solution for multi-dwelling units (MDU) and hospitality applications in Asia. They’re claiming delivery of up to 190 Mbit/s of IP traffic and is a third of the price for DOCSIS 3.0-based solutions to deliver the same throughput.

The CopperGate announcement quotes Kurt Scherf, VP and Principal Analyst with Parks Assocations as saying “This new product will be particularly well-positioned in Asian markets because of the rapidly-growing middle class of consumers who are seeking these amenities for their apartments.”

That’s pretty telling in that going forward, I think we all need to keep an eye on the market outside of the United States.

 Now, back to my headline for a minute.

In remembering the song, “It’s a Small World,” here is something else to remember:  the song was purposed for use at the 1964-65 World’s Fair in New York, a time when the old, old, old AT&T was touting its futuristic “Videophone” at the same venue. 

I wonder what would happen today if a world’s fair were being held -- you pick the country--  but with G.hn, and its potential applications as the headlining attraction. 

If I was running the show, I’d license the song from Disney, and get every service provider on planet earth to sing along, and imagine the potential of what a global, single standard like G.hn could bring to the wired home networking revolution.

 

Why G.hn is now the Official Big Enchilada of Wired Home Networking Standards.

March 12, 2009 4:03 AM in Alan Weinkrantz , Best Buy , EveryWire , EveryWire.com , G.hn , Home Networking , HomeGrid Forum , HomePlug , HomePNA , MoCA , P1901 , U-verse , Wired Home Networking  | 0 comments  | 1 TrackBack

Last night as I was running some errands, I drove by and decided to pay a visit to my local Best Buy where I live in San Antonio.  I walked through the myriad of big screen TVs and of course the way cool Magnolia Theater section of the store.

I needed to do this in order think through a bit more about how and why Best Buy’s role as a Board Member of the HomeGrid Forum will impact the future of the wired home network. 

Then it hit me. 

Being an AT&T U-verse customer, I must confess that my brain has been way too service provider-centric since I have been living on HomePNA for the past three years.

The “ah-ha” moment came to me when I realized that in one fell swoop, the big box retailer will be the key driver in the migration to the next generation of wired home networking - the G.hn standard.  Now that Circuit City is dead, Best Buy controls what U.S. consumers buy in terms of consumer electronics, home appliances, and computers.

Best Buy wants to make sure that when a customer walks in the door to shop and hopefully buy, the entire experience is excellent. While I haven’t spoken to Best Buy, my guess is they probably realize all too well that the home networking experience today is not that great an experience. There are too many standards, different devices that don’t work well together and as a result, customers get confused and return their products.

Best Buy can fix all that. By pushing TV, appliance, computer and network device makers towards a common standard like G.hn, Best Buy can do more to help rally the industry around a unified approach to the connected home.  Plus, what Best Buy does in the U.S. will impact what other big box retailers in other parts of the world. 

My guess is once Best Buy decides to embrace G.hn in full, every hardware company will have to migrate from existing standards such as HomePlug, MoCA and HomePNA to G.hn. This probably won’t happen overnight. It will probably take years. Still, I can’t hardly wait and see how Best Buy makes it all work seamlessly together.

 

 




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