Typically, an HFC access network is the network between headends and wall outlets. Optical access is terminated in the fibre nodes and RF access in the wall outlets. What might easily be forgotten is the fact that all of these devices need accessories and tools and they need to be connected to an element management system. Together, all of these things can be called an access ecosystem.

Access to cost savings by rationalising network infrastructure

Example: When you use Teleste’s HDO203 upstream receiver together with our fibre optic node CXE880, you are able to get remote monitoring to the CXE without an additional transponder, which you would need if one of the devices would be from another vendor. Suppose you need 10,000 CXE’s in your network and a transponder for the CXE costs around 60 euros. Not being forced to invest on transponders would save you approximately 600,000 euros.

Behind access networks there are complicated ecosystems. For every device in a network, you need accessories, software and services to keep both the devices and your network running. You might find out that sometimes the total cost of maintaining your network ecosystem is more than the CAPEX of the network devices themselves.

For example, optical nodes imply a need for training for personnel as well as stock, installation instructions, purchasing, forecasting, meeting vendors and tendering. They also denote management software, tools, accessories and spare units, and these in turn demand further training, stock, installation instructions, purchasing, foresting, meeting vendors, tendering, and so on.  The total cost of you network infrastructure includes these elements as well.  The costs are easily multiplied by having two or even more access solution vendors, which requires that you to maintain several access ecosystems.

A typical access network is a combination of optical and RF access areas that can be divided further into smaller domains, such as HE optics, optical passives, optical nodes, etc. Many vendors offer building blocks to cover certain network parts, and operators assemble networks by using these building blocks. But when the blocks are purchased and put together, you often end up also paying for overlapping features.

Teleste has put its finger on rationalising network ecosystems. Our HFC accessories are similar for all of our devices, cutting down the number of different accessories. Our management system supports all network devices; obviously, this means that only one management system is needed. We are also specialised in planning and offering entire network systems instead of single devices, and our elements can be put together without any overlap. You are not paying for extra devices or unnecessary overlapping features. Concentrating on the big picture enables you to decrease both your capital expenditure and operating costs and yet maintain the high level of service required by consumers.

For operators today, providing top quality services and answering consumer demands are of great importance. Equally important is the need to ensure that the operations maintain their competitiveness. That can be effectively reached by rationalising the network infrastructure and calculating the actual total cost of operating it.  Ask yourself: is your access ecosystem optimal and capable of living? Do the network elements have overlapping features? Do you maintain several ecosystems instead of just one?

The article was originally published in May 2013 on Teleste’s website.