Ikanos Introduces Gigabit Speed Test

  • Ikanos Communications
FREMONT, CA — Ikanos Communications, a provider of advanced broadband semiconductor and software products for the connected home, announced Gigabit Speed Test, embedded software for broadband home gateways that monitors data rates across the gateway for all broadband access technologies. With Gigabit Speed Test, carriers can now accurately measure the data rate of the service they deliver to the home, even for broadband service rates up to one gigabit per second. Gigabit Speed Test is the latest addition to Ikanos' inSIGHT BXM software suite, targeted for carriers and their service assurance partners. Designed to work with any broadband access technology, Gigabit Speed Test is a powerful new analysis tool that enables both carriers and their subscribers to track and manage the quality of the broadband service as delivered to the residence.

Today's commercially available speed monitoring tools have become quite popular and are typically designed to be used on consumer-end devices, such as PC, laptops, and tablets. The results from these tests can only indicate the performance of the slowest link between the Internet and those end devices. When the test results are lower than expected, the consumer is likely to place fault with their broadband service provider, even when the problem lies within their home Wi-Fi network. In contrast, Ikanos' Gigabit Speed Test runs directly on the residential gateway. By doing so, it provides a powerful new tool for carriers to understand the performance of their broadband service as it is delivered to the home. Carriers now have the ability to separate issues associated with broadband service delivery from typical home networking issues, such as Wi-Fi connectivity. This allows the carrier to pin-point service delivery bottlenecks in a way that was not possible before, thereby shortening the time to identify and address subscriber problems.

The new Ikanos Gigabit Speed Test is designed to meet the increasing speeds of the ultra-broadband era, supporting gigabit data rates with minimal impact on the main gateway processor. In addition, Ikanos Gigabit Speed Test supports the ability to assess the broadband connection without disrupting the normal operation of the residential gateway or the home network. This is a unique advantage since other commercially available speed test applications can cause high-priority services such as video to drop out during the test or provide inaccurate results when they compete for bandwidth against other services.

Key features of Gigabit Speed Test include:

  • Works with all broadband access technologies: copper (all forms of DSL, including G.fast); fiber (FTTH), cable (DOCSIS 3.1) and wireless (LTE)

  • Supports data rates up through 1 Gbps without disrupting the normal operation of the residential gateway or the home network

  • Ability to work seamlessly with third-party speed test services


"As broadband data rates approach the gigabit range, consumers need some tangible evidence of the actual rates they receive and for which they are paying," said Erik M. Keith, principal analyst for Fixed Access and Video, Current Analysis. "Even in a gigabit-per-subscriber world, it's safe to say that home networks will experience bandwidth contention among connected devices. This is why the introduction of Gigabit Speed Test, following on the footsteps of Ikanos' recently announced Traffic Analyzer, is compelling. Together they provide carriers and customers the same view of delivered bandwidth, while improving the overall broadband experience — with real-time performance tracking of their usage and cap monitoring."

Monitoring the Residential Gateway

Gigabit Speed Test is a response to the proliferation of bandwidth-intensive applications and devices and the increasing demand they place on the residential gateway. As operators continue their race to gigabit broadband, they require new and innovative tools to ensure the quality of their broadband service, and to identify issues and fix issues in real-time. The rising cost of maintaining and supporting their rapidly evolving broadband access network infrastructure makes it cost-prohibitive to send out a technician every time there's a subscriber inquiry about the quality of delivered service. In this environment, embedded tool kits such as Ikanos' Gigabit Speed Test bring unparalleled visibility to carriers about the health of their network and the quality of their service at each subscriber's home, through a very cost-effective model.

"We continue to expand the capabilities of our industry-leading inSIGHT BXM software suite with innovative value-add features designed to facilitate carrier migration to the gigabit era," said Kourosh Amiri, vice president of marketing at Ikanos. "The rapidly increasing consumer appetite for ultra-broadband connectivity is a challenge for wireline and wireless carriers alike. While the bulk of carriers' investment and deployment efforts remains focused on meeting this challenge and enabling gigabit service delivery, it is equally important for carriers to proactively monitor the health of their network and the quality of the delivered service. As a result, innovations such as our inSIGHT Gigabit Speed Test become a critical component of the carrier race to gigabit."

inSIGHT Gigabit Speed Test is currently going through carrier evaluations, and is scheduled for commercial release in third quarter of this year.

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