Fujitsu has released details of two new DSLAMs that are designed for use in small and rural exchanges. They are dubbed the FDX Compact and FDX Mini DSLAM (click name for a picture of each). Their bigger brother the Fujitsu FDX xDSL Access platform is used in a lot of the exchanges currently supplying the BT Wholesale ADSL service.
The launch of the Mini DSLAM is no suprise, BT has been trialling several brands as part of its Community ADSL product since Autumn 2002. The picture shows the very small size of the Fujitsu unit aimed at that product niche. One thing people have voiced concerns about is expandability - this Fujitsu product supports 24 users in a single unit, and can be cascaded to provide 56 users from a single FDX mini system. Additionally scope for future expansion to 112 lines is catered for.
The FDX Compact is interesting, as we are seeing a lot of exchanges from small towns either not generating a great deal of demand, or simply they are too small for a full sized DSLAM,and too large for the mini DSLAMs. The Compact model can support upto 279 lines, with a scaleable architecture allowing upto 620 lines in the future. Interestingly there is scope for the subtending of remote FDX Mini DSLAMs, i.e. using a Compact DLSAM in one exchange and running bandwidth from this DSLAM to Mini DSLAMs at remote locations. Potentially this could be used to extend the range, i.e. fill in black spots of coverage, or bring DSL to people in TPON areas.
For the majority of users, how their Broadband is delivered does not concern them, but news that new hardware is available that may help to make areas that are deemed unviable for ADSL currently more viable is to be welcomed. Let us hope that BT Wholesale can evaluate kit like the FDX Compact and find a place in the UK rollout, for this model or kit like it.
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