Distributed Architecture, Getting Closer to the Customer

The exponential growth of Internet access around the world generates a considerable increase in operational costs for telcos. Most of the expenses are related to equipment management and maintenance, aiming to ensure the quality of service to end customers. More and more devices are entering the internet, and this means that CSPs must be continually adapting to market guidelines. Distributed Access Architecture (DAA) is one of the steps.

The DAA approach deals better with the challenges of rapidly expanding customer demand. Take a look at how the new architecture solves this problems in our blog post How DAA Solves Virtualization Issues.

The main drawbacks of the services offered focus on the load times that are consumed (streaming, queries, downloads). It is an indispensable need to increase the bandwidth of the services. At this very first point, troubles in the platforms start due to the characteristics of the current architecture offered in the Telco. On it, The CMTS (Cable Modem Termination System) allows providing the service through devices in the customer’s home. The general evolution of this architecture makes it possible to improve the quality of the network elements by placing them closer to the user.

Current centralized architectures present several problems oriented to locative needs (space of network components, devices, cabling) high energy consumption and cooling of them.

Distributed Architecture (DAA) Main Benefits

The distributed access architecture simplifies the entire management of these components. The gain comes from decreasing the requirements based on distributing. The load is divided into different distributed components, allowing services to get closer to the customer’s home.

Distributed architecture (DAA) breaks down the centralized and obsolete scheme. Different functions are decentralized to more efficient mobile systems. The result is fewer resource consumption, with an upgrade on service quality:

  • Less use of operator’s hardware
  • Increases service reliability.
  • Improves aspects such as latency, security, and speed.

DAA allows hubs to be closer to the end customer. In this new framework, extra elements on the network are gone. With the removal of attenuators or signal amplifiers, for example, the quality of service is optimized. Similarly, the costs associated with component maintenance, technical revisions, and so, tend to decrease.

Some additional benefits are:

  • Reduction of space, energy consumption, and device cooling systems.
  • Cutback of operational costs associated with the management and maintenance of network components.
  • Virtualization of components and new integration technologies for the last mile access.

Network Functions of Distributed Architecture

Media access control layer (MAC)

It is responsible for controlling how devices get access and permission to transmit data.

Physical layer (PHY)

It handles the transmission and reception of data between the access terminal and the network.

Main Approaches of the DAA

There are different approaches to initiate the process of changing architecture:

  • MAC+PHY. Move all CMTS out of the central site and into the fiber node.
  • Split-MAC: Move the PHY layer and part of the MAC layer, away from the central site, and to the fiber node. The remaining part of the MAC layer remains in the central site.
  • Remote PHY: move only the PHY layer to the fiber node. The MAC layer remains in the central site.
  • PHY layer closer to home: it results in a better network performance: less noise, greater modulation, more capacity, and higher speeds

Today, several cable operators and providers are testing different DAA options in the field, where you don’t have a script or a series of steps to follow.

The best way to start processes is to document, work with your trusted provider, and start the transition to the new architecture.

“There is no single solution for everyone.”

The DAA approach deals better with the challenges of rapidly expanding customer demand. Take a look at how the new architecture solves this problems in our blog post How DAA Solves Virtualization Issues.

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