Optical Wireless Solutions Based on Free Space Optical (FSO) Technology

Written by Lightpointe Communications

Continued from page 1

Source 2: Justrepparttar Facts, Corning Incorporated, 1995 Sorce 3: The Essential Guide to Telecommunications, Annabel Zodd, 2002 Source 4 What Ever Happened to Broadband?, Erick Schonfeld, Business 2.0, October 2002 Source 5: The Essential Guide to Telecommunications, Annabel Zodd, 2002 Source 6: Can They Dig It?, Kate Gerwig, Teledotcom, March 2001

Today’s Emerging Synergistic Optical Wireless/Fiber Landscape

From rural farms to suburban hospital campuses to big city high-rise offices, high-speed network connections must be made available everywhere people live and work, ifrepparttar 139079 information age is to reach full realization. Although rural, suburban and metropolitan connections each have their own sets of challenges;repparttar 139080 metropolitan market is presentingrepparttar 139081 greatest difficulty for true highbandwidth connectivity. Complete, efficient, and profitable networks to meet emerging customer needs cannot exist withoutrepparttar 139082 creation of metro area connectivity using diverse medium and resources. While some may consider an all-fiber networkrepparttar 139083 ideal connectivity solution,repparttar 139084 medium’s high-bandwidth capacity comes at a high price that is not feasible everywhere. A number of compelling factors justify further integration of optical wireless solutions to complement fiber deployments to meetrepparttar 139085 growing connectivity demands. Service providers that have invested significantly to build network fiber backbones now need communications traffic to fully utilize network upgrades and generate revenues to pay for such investments. Developing metro optical network deployments (substantial bandwidth upgrades) extendsrepparttar 139086 reach of metropolitan networks torepparttar 139087 network edge. This isrepparttar 139088 same portion ofrepparttar 139089 network where regulation changes have encouraged telecommunications players to “race” to gain competitive advantage and deliverrepparttar 139090 best value to customers

EVOLVING INFRASTRUCTURES Because metropolitan telecommunications network architectures—particularly those inrepparttar 139091 United States and Western Europe—have evolved as a patchwork of technologies, communications data is often slowed by protocols translations to manage and direct high-bandwidth information through metro networks. In growing economies such as China, India and Latin America,repparttar 139092 growth in bandwidth demands presents a different challenge, due to relative lack of network infrastructure.

TECHNOLOGICAL ADVANTAGES Optical wireless solutions and fiber arerepparttar 139093 two optical technologies today that deliver high-speed optical bandwidth to meet market needs. Their integration offers several technological advantages. First, fiber optics and optical wireless solutions share several characteristics. Optical wireless solutions can userepparttar 139094 same optical transmission wavelengths as fiber optics (850nm or 1550 nm). Second, optical wireless solutions and fiber can utilizerepparttar 139095 same system components such as lasers, receivers and amplifiers. Third, both fiber and optical wireless can transmit digital information using a range of protocols. Fourth—and critically important in meeting technological demands—optical wireless deliversrepparttar 139096 bandwidth (up to 2.5Gbps) necessary to complement fiber networks.

STRONG BUSINESS MODEL The business advantages of optical wireless for network extensions include deployments at an average of one-fifthrepparttar 139097 cost of fiber-optic cable and in one-tenthrepparttar 139098 time. Optical wireless systems are a flexible investment that can be re-deployed to meet changing customer needs. Optical wireless and fiber also integrate seamlessly, and because optical wireless equipment is simple and easily installed,repparttar 139099 technology can bridge optical network gaps effectively with reduced CAPEX risk. Installing optical wireless solutions to complement fiber enables service providers to secure customers in a specific location first before installingrepparttar 139100 system to bridge torepparttar 139101 fiber network, providing optimal alignment between capital expenditure and income.

Complementary Future The future ofrepparttar 139102 information economy depends on profitability. Despite large debt loads and low cash flow, service providers cannot afford to forego investments necessary to grow their customer base—and that requires extending their networks to complete “last mile” connectivity.

Now that they are being more discriminating aboutrepparttar 139103 way they spend their money, service provider managers are demanding high-bandwidth technologies that will also lower OPEX. Flexible networks that can adjust to changing customer concentrations and metro environments are needed. Combining optical wireless and fiber to create optical networks offersrepparttar 139104 best solution to these problems. The reward for successfully combining these two optical technologies is attainable and economically viable.

Complementary deployment of optical wireless and fiber servesrepparttar 139105 needs of a variety of carrier types in metropolitan networks. Market growth for both last mile access and network extension applications is predicted to experience a 219% growth rate in 2001 over 2000 and hasrepparttar 139106 potential to extend metro last-mile networks.7 Despite questions about economic growth, there is no reason to expect that customer demand for bandwidth will slow inrepparttar 139107 near future, and although carrier capital spending may have slowed to a crawl, prospects for growth remain strong.8 SG Cowen projects carrier spending on new equipment, after two years of decline, should hit $102 billion by 2003. Metro optical networks are expected to see $57.3 billion invested by 2005.

Conclusion The most exciting possibilities forrepparttar 139108 future ofrepparttar 139109 information economy will only be practical and profitable when network connectivity is expanded to reach a broad customer base. Telephone lines have this connectivity, but they don’t offerrepparttar 139110 capacity to enable true high-bandwidth communications. The network fiber backbone or “core” can carryrepparttar 139111 bandwidth, but has yet to be connected torepparttar 139112 majority of potential users. A new paradigm for building optical networks offers an alternative to expensive and timeconsuming fiber-only metro networks. By combining optical wireless and fiber, networks can be built quickly and provide affordable and scalable connections to end-users, who are expected to continue increasing demand for bandwidth.

Source 7: The Strategis Group, Free Space Optics: Global Trends, Positioning, and Forecasts, September, 2001 Source 8: Optical Networking Industry, SG Cowen Securities Corp., August 2001

Lightpointe are a pioneer in the development of Optical Wireless products based on free-space optics (FSO) technology. LightPointe's Wireless Systems are installed and supported in the UK and Europe by WAN Partnership Ltd. More information and further discussion about Wireless technologies can be found at: http://www.wanpartnership.co.uk

Digital Signage - Choosing the Best Video Distribution Technology

Written by Minicom Advanced Systems

Continued from page 1

Benefits & Drawbacks Fiber optic cable is optimal for transmitting high-resolution multi-media over long distances, a feature which makes it particularly appropriate for digital signage. Fiber optic cable provides network-independent performance without downtime or transmission lags. It can transfer media over 40 kilometers or more. In addition, it requires no special infrastructure, software or display-side CPUs.

However, fiber optic is a point-to-point technology – in other words, a pure fiber optic cable solution will not allow multiple displays to receive output from a single video source. This can prove a significant obstacle for multiple-display digital signage installations such as malls and airports.

In addition, fiber optic cable has a high price relative to other technologies. Fiber optic cable’s expense can prove prohibitive when planning a large digital signage project. A possible solution, discussed below, isrepparttar combination of fiber optic cable with other, less expensive solutions, allowingrepparttar 139078 user to benefit from fiber optic cable’s advantages while reducingrepparttar 139079 total cost ofrepparttar 139080 project.

CAT5 Distribution Systems CAT5 cable is also a transmission medium favored for local installations that need high bandwidth and high resolution without any existing network infrastructure. CAT5 cable technology provides these advantages at a considerably lower cost than fiber optic cable. CAT5 technology supports real-time multi-media transfer through inexpensive, low density, twisted pair cabling.

Benefits & Drawbacks In certain ways, CAT5 technology as a distribution platform combinesrepparttar 139081 best aspects of fiber-optic and network technologies. Like fiber optic technology, CAT5 technology requires no special software or display-side CPUs, and is completely hardware-based and network independent. Only transmitter and receiving units are required. While CAT5 covers shorter distances than fiber optic cable (typically 100-300 m/300-1000 ft), CAT5 cable costs considerably less than fiber optic cable, making it a leading option for combination solutions which overcome CAT5 cable’s distance limitations.

In addition, CAT5 technology can be used in point-to-multi-point applications, allowingrepparttar 139082 broadcast of media content from one central source to hundreds of display stations. As a result, CAT5 technology alone or combined with fiber optic cable is an ideal solution for multiple-display digital signage installations.

Due to its network independence, CAT5 cable allows high performance, real-time transmission of high-resolution multi-media without slowdowns or downtime. If CAT5 technology is combined with a BIOS-level hardware solution for remote access over IP (such as a KVM IP extender), it can even allow remote maintenance and trouble shooting forrepparttar 139083 content server that managesrepparttar 139084 content to be displayed, minimizing down time and loss of investment.

CAT5 cable’s low expense, ease of installation, and flexibility make it a good choice for a primary distribution technology as well as a leading “last mile” option for combination platforms.

Combination Technologies Because ofrepparttar 139085 advantages and drawbacks of each ofrepparttar 139086 technologies listed above, it is frequently advisable to use a combination of technologies for optimal performance atrepparttar 139087 lowest possible cost.

Fiber optic and CAT5 cable When dealing with high-resolution media over large distances that must be broadcast to a group of displays, a combination of fiber optic and CAT5 cable isrepparttar 139088 optimal solution. In this case, fiber optic cable is used for distance broadcasting together with a local CAT5 video broadcaster for “splitting”repparttar 139089 broadcast torepparttar 139090 various displays. This is a simple solution to install, since all that is needed is to connectrepparttar 139091 fiber optic receiver withrepparttar 139092 CAT5 video broadcaster. Andrepparttar 139093 use of CAT5 cable forrepparttar 139094 last 50-150 meters/150-500 feet of cabling instead of fiber optic cable can provide significant savings.

Benefits High resolution & performance Hardware solution Point to multi-point No special infrastructure or display-side software required Network independent Long distance Supports groups of displays Lower cost than pure fiber optic

Conclusion: By combiningrepparttar 139095 two technologies intorepparttar 139096 same solution and usingrepparttar 139097 true advantages of each type of cable you were able to save almost 17% or $17,500 in direct costs to your customer.

Data Network and CAT5 cable When managing multiple groups of digital signage displays from a remote location, a combination of data networking and local CAT5 cabling can giverepparttar 139098 userrepparttar 139099 best of both worlds: remote management over IP combined with low-cost and network-independent infrastructure. The “last mile” use of CAT5 in place of data networks atrepparttar 139100 display end savesrepparttar 139101 cost of a computer (or CPU) for every display. All that is needed is a local central server, which is remotely managed throughrepparttar 139102 data network. The local server is connected to multiple displays through CAT5 technology, freeingrepparttar 139103 local installation from network dependence. The digital signage of each location is network-independent, and each installation is far less expensive to implement. Bandwidth issues are also surmounted by transmitting media torepparttar 139104 local computer ahead of time for scheduling on-the-fly. Atrepparttar 139105 time of broadcast, media is transmitted locally over CAT5 cabling, which is network independent and not limited by bandwidth.

Benefits Point to multi-point High resolution & performance No local infrastructure or display-side software required Locally network independent Low cost

Conclusion Distribution infrastructure is an important part of digital signage, and choosingrepparttar 139106 correct distribution technology is a crucial element of any digital signage project. While each distribution technology has its advantages and drawbacks,repparttar 139107 correct combination of technologies can achieve low cost and high performance no matter whatrepparttar 139108 project size or complexity.

Minicom Advanced Systems is a leading manufacturer of innovative A/V distribution solutions.

Minicom's AV Solutions are distributed and supported in the UK by DVI Partnership Ltd. For more information visit: http://www.dvipartnership.co.uk

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