G.fast: 1 Gigabit per second DSL


I used to use DSL. It was great back then, but 6 Mbps per second isn’t enough these days. So, I turned to cable, where I’m currently enjoying 100 Mbps, and I’m dreaming of
Google fibers

Speeds of 1 gigabit per second (Gbit / s). However, a new DSL technology, G.fast, could bring old phone lines back into the internet speed race with speeds of 1 Gbps –
up to 10 Gbit / s


G. fast
G.fast will be competitive with last mile fiber internet speeds.


1Gbps over copper technology is fast becoming a standard. While there have been hopes that it will be finalized now, it now looks like it won’t be finished until the end of the year.

The sponsoring organization, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), says G.fast “combines the best aspects of fiber and ADSL2”. By this, the ITU means that consumers will be able to buy a G.fast modem, connect it to their landline connection and, presto, they will get speeds of 1 Gbps. With that kind of speed, you’ll be ready to watch
4K video


Today with

, DSL tops out, practically speaking, at 100 Mbps. Much slower speeds are much more common. As the FCC observed in its 2014 report on Consumer Wired Broadband Performance in the United States, “ISPs using DSL technology show little or no improvement in top speeds.”

Indeed, according to the report, “DSL, unlike cable and fiber technologies, is highly dependent on the length of the copper wire (or ‘loop’) from the residence to the service provider’s electronic termination equipment. , so achieving higher data speeds would require companies to make large capital investments in a market area to shorten copper loops. “

Well, that won’t happen. Indeed, some companies, like Verizon, have been accused of letting their
the copper network crumbles

. If G.fast takes off, those old copper phone lines will become precious possessions again.

G.fast dramatically increases speed over copper by using wider frequency profiles than earlier versions of DSL. While VDSL2 uses 17 or 30 MHz, G.fast will operate on 106 MHz and possibly 212 MHz.

To operate at these speeds and bandwidths, crosstalk – interference between adjacent wires – would be a real problem. To take care of it, G.fast uses vector processing to continuously monitor the noise condition of the wire and create an anti-noise signal to cancel it in a manner similar to the operation of noise canceling headphones.

Yet G.fast is not a perfect replacement for traditional DSL. Its main problem is that it is only capable of delivering 1 Gbps at no more than 100 meters. It is designed to work up to 250 meters, but it will be slower: 500 Mbps. While G.fast is unlikely to bring 1 Gbps to rural areas, it would still work in suburban and urban environments.

Many telecom equipment vendors, such as Alcatel-Lucent and Huawei, are already working on silicon and G.fast modems. Telephone operators, however, evolve more slowly. In Europe, Swisscom, Telekom Austria and German Telekom are testing the technology. AT&T, which has retained its copper network, would be interested in deploying G.fast.

Right now, it looks like G.fast will start rolling out in late 2015 or early 2016. DSL-based ISPs may want to increase this timeline. Consumers and businesses want the speeds of Google Fiber and with the recent approval of DOCSIS 3.1, cable will also soon be able to deploy speeds of 1 Gbps and above at home and in the office.

One way or another – G.fast, fiber, or DOCSIS 3.1 – we are getting closer to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) dream of
gigabit internet speeds available in all US states

by 2015. If DSL-based ISPs want to be part of the conversation, they will need to move forward with G.fast as soon as possible.

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