broadbandawards2With just one week to go until this year’s Broadband InfoVision Awards ceremony in Amsterdam, we deliver our final category preview, ending on a suitably upbeat note with the Changing Lives Award.

This award recognises an initiative launched between July 2011 and June 2012 that significantly impacted telecommunications in the community and contributed to economic and/or social development.

The first nominee for this award is GreenTouch, a consortium of leading Information and Communications Technology (ICT) industry, academic and non-governmental research experts dedicated to fundamentally transforming communications and data networks, including the internet, and significantly reducing the carbon footprint of ICT devices, platforms and networks.

GreenTouch has been nominated for this award for the development of Bit-Interleaved Passive Optical Network (Bi-PON), described as the “next major leap” in passive optical network (PON) technologies, and capable of cutting the power consumption of current PON technology by a factor of 30.

By 2015, GreenTouch’s stated target is to deliver the architecture, specifications and roadmap – and demonstrate key components – needed to increase network energy efficiency by a factor of 1,000 from current levels. This will be accomplished by designing fundamentally new network architectures and creating the enabling technologies on which they are based.

Second on the shortlist is UK public/private partnership Superfast Cornwall, which has been praised as changing the lives of those who live and work in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, by offering fast broadband connections to almost everyone in this rugged and remote region.

The £132m ($214m) project is being funded jointly by the EU, telco BT and Cornwall Council, and will place 90 per cent of the region’s homes and businesses within reach of super-fast fibre-based broadband (80Mbps FTTC and 330Mbps FTTP), with the remaining ten per cent to be served by a combination of 4G wireless, ADSL2+ and other technologies.

Following a pilot trial involving eight small exchanges serving some 14,000 customers, deployment began in earnest in July 2011. By 2014, the performance of broadband services available at every one of the 250,000 homes and businesses in the West of England will have been vastly improved, and by 2015, either FTTC or FTTP will be available to around 90 per cent of homes and business in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

Finally, Chinese firm ZTE has been shortlisted for the ICP Store it delivered to Swedish broadband operator Wexnet as part of a project to build a new access network that enables customers to choose different content providers/service providers that suit their individual needs, with all services being delivered over a single network.

The network needed to be smart enough to self-organise: all necessary configuration of the network equipments (access/aggregation/core switches) had to be done automatically when customers submitted subscriptions for specific services, allowing users to provision themselves.

After many rounds of in-depth discussion between Wexnet and ZTE, several ZTE solution engineers stayed in Sweden for around six months to help develop the network solution and do field trials. Back in Beijing, ZTE’s switch R&D centre also devoted lots of energy to the project, developing new features for switches.

This year’s Broadband InfoVision awards will be held in Amsterdam on October 17th. For more information and to register, please visit http://www.broadbandworldforum.com/awards/about-the-awards/


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