Verizon and Cisco Upgrade Fiber Network, Enhancing Speed, Reliability, and Capacity

Verizon, in collaboration with vendor Cisco, has concluded trials on its fiber network in metro Long Island, NY. This extensive testing showcased substantial improvements in speed, reliability, and overall capacity for Verizon’s fiber network.
Verizon Fios Fiber NetworkDuring the trials, Verizon achieved the impressive milestone of transmitting 1.2 Tbps of data using a single wavelength over longer distances and through more network nodes. Verizon engineers have achieved the breakthrough via the upgrade of the optical to electrical conversion cards responsible for managing the flow of customer data within the fiber optic cables. By enhancing these components, data can now travel farther and faster across Verizon’s fiber network, ultimately leading to an enhanced customer experience and increased reliability.

Verizon’s investment in building one of the most robust fiber networks in the nation has been ongoing. Over the past few years, the company has accelerated its fiber build plan, deploying nearly 57,000 fiber miles since 2020. Currently, over 51 percent of its cell sites are connected via its own fiber infrastructure.

Verizon’s commitment to expanding its fiber-to-the-premise (FTTP) presence in the Northeast remains strong, with recent announcements detailing plans for high-speed internet expansion in regions including Delaware, Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and central New York.

Recently, Verizon revealed that the number of broadband subscribers has reached approximately 10.3 million during July-September 2023, an increase of nearly 21 percent. Verizon’s capital expenditures were $14.2 billion during the first nine months of 2023. Verizon is planning Capex of $18.25 billion to $19.25 billion during the year.

Verizon has added 72,000 Fios Internet customers during Q3 2023 vs 61,000 in the third-quarter of 2022. Verizon’s Consumer Fios revenue was $2.9 billion in third-quarter 2023, a decrease of 0.2 percent year over year.

Adam Koeppe, Senior Vice President of Technology Planning at Verizon, emphasized the significance of their fiber investment, stating, “We have bet big on fiber. Not only does it provide an award-winning broadband experience for consumers and enterprises, it also serves as the backbone of our wireless network.”

In addition to the increased data rates achieved in these trials, the optical technology developed by Cisco significantly reduces the need for signal regeneration along the data path. It compensates for the degradation of the light signal as it travels through the fiber cable, thereby enhancing reliability and reducing the cost per bit operating expense for more efficient network management.

Bill Gartner, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Cisco Optical Systems and Optics, highlighted their commitment to innovation, saying, “This trial demonstrates our commitment to innovation aimed at increasing wavelength capacity and reducing costs. The Verizon infrastructure built with the Cisco NCS 2000 open line system supports multiple generations of optics.”

The trials were conducted over Verizon’s live production network using Cisco’s NCS 1014 transceiver shelf and Acacia’s Coherent Interconnect Module 8 (CIM 8). The CIM 8 represents an advanced generation of silicon semiconductor chips with increased transistor density, combining 5nm complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) digital processing and 140 Gbaud silicon photonics optics using advanced 3D packaging technology.

During the trials, Verizon successfully transmitted a 1.0 Tb/s single-wavelength over the Cisco NCS 2000 line system, covering a distance of 205km and passing through 14 fiber central offices. The number of central offices traversed is a key performance metric in metropolitan networks, with progressive filtering and signal-to-noise ratio degradation as the wavelength passes through each office. Furthermore, the trials also achieved an 800 Gb/s transmission over 305km through 20 central offices and saw a 1.2 Tb/s wavelength traverse three central offices.

This successful upgrade and trial demonstrate Verizon’s commitment to enhancing its network capabilities and ensuring its customers benefit from faster, more reliable, and higher-capacity fiber connectivity.