The convergence of cable services towards IP has been an evolution in multiple steps building upon each other. IP technology is of course end-to-end for high-speed data services, is increasingly driving network transport for all services and media, and is keying the industry’s expansion of voice offerings. There are serious plans in place for increasing the relevance of IP to video as well, even in the home.
The author proposes the emergence of a new triple-play platform that consolidates all processing and communications functionality required for video, voice and data services, by combining the best elements of headend video services platforms and DOCSIS cable modem termination systems (CMTSs). This platform will be standards-based with particular proficiency in IP technologies, but also support for legacy services and devices maintained in the network. The platform promises to key the emergence of far greater service functionality and resource efficiency, and boost the cable industry’s competitiveness, propelling it towards being the leading provider of all services and media to its subscribers.