Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC) has officially joined the process of developing a 1 gigabit-per-second-capable broadband network for Los Angeles residents, businesses and government, responding to a request for information (RFI) put out by the city.
TWC's response is centered around its plans for DOCSIS 3.1, the recently completed standard developed by CableLabs and widely refered to as "Gigasphere" in the cable industry, that will enable TWC's existing hybrid fiber-coax (HFC) network to support downstream speeds of up to 10 Gbps.
The City of Los Angeles Community Broadband Network was introduced over the spring, with a July 18 deadline set for proposals. The city asked bidders to propose an "enforcable timeline and process for buildout" of a broadband network featuring downstream speeds of 1 Gbps or faster. Joint bidding was encouraged.
"Over the last four years, Time Warner Cable has invested more than $1.5 billion to enhance our infrastructure and services in Los Angeles. This significant investment coupled with new 'Gigasphere' technology positions us to be able to introduce gigabit-per-second speeds in 2016," said Peter Stern, executive VP and chief strategy, people and corporate development officer at TWC, in a statement. "Leveraging our existing network allows us to deliver these speeds faster and with less disruption than any other provider."
TWC currently offers top-end 300 Mbps service to Los Angeles residents and businesses leveraging systems based on DOCSIS 3.0.
So far, rollouts of 1 Gbps-or-faster systems have been concentrated in smaller metropolitan markets like Austin, Texas and Kansas City, Mo., but Los Angeles and New York have been identified as key markets for TWC and its new corporate fiance, Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA), with the latter recently self-identifying as an "urban-clustered cable company."
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