Sunday, March 09, 2008

BPN 1032 Anything new about BPL?

Last week I received a press release over broadband over powerline networks. The headline said Finally the Digital Divide killer is here: DS2 introduces ALMA 4.0 Broadband over Powerline (BPL) solution. At last a sign of Powerline networks again. But is it a far cry?

In the press release DS2, a global supplier of high-speed powerline communications technology, announced the availability of a new networking solution for Broadband Powerline Communications (BPL) and Smart Grid applications.

The solution, available as a firmware upgrade, benefits from a new modular architecture that promotes code reuse and reduces the development cycle while allowing product developers greater access to advance on-chip features for customisation and product differentiation. Performance is enhanced by up to 20 per cent which increases average throughput in the network for Broadband applications and provides unmatched resilience to impairments, such as noise on MV and LV overhead electricity lines to meet the stringent reliability requirements of Smart Grid applications.

BPL technology is used to deliver broadband services, including Internet access, VoIP, Muni WiFi, video surveillance, traffic monitoring and air quality monitoring. Smart Grid technology is used by electricity utilities for grid management applications such as outage prevision and management, advanced metering, preventive maintenance, asset management and optimisation and load management and control. Both BPL and Smart Grid applications share the same electrical network and benefit from DS2's new Alma 4.0, specifically the unique frequency translation and frequency division repeating to support network planning requirements for large networks.

DS2 is the leading technology innovator and a global provider of high-speed semiconductor solutions for Powerline Communications and other wire-line network communications products. Led by a very strong team of former executives from IBM, AT&T/Bell-Labs, INTEL, Philips Semiconductors, France Telecom, Ericsson and Cisco we deliver state-of-the-art ICs and software solutions to manufacturers of consumer electronics, home networking and digital entertainment equipment and broadband access products. DS2 invented high-speed Powerline Communications delivering the first 200Mbps Powerline Communications IC to enable quality multimedia home networking, networked entertainment and broadband access applications to and throughout the home, office, or building, and to and throughout urban and rural communities. Enabling the hidden multimedia network behind the power outlet is the purpose of DS2.

The press release is impressive. But in the press release there is no reference to concrete projects, only to technology. If I look around in the Netherlands, nothing has happened since the suspension of the Nuon BPL in Arnhem. And reading the Wikipedia article on Broadband over powerlines is not too optimistic either.

it is a pity that in the press release such rambling wordings as BPL the Digital Divide killer have been used. BPL could contribute to the Digital Divide, if it was a widespread, trusted technology. But given the Wikipedia inventory of projects and suspensions, it is definitely not a Digital Divide killer. Be happy CEBIT in hannover is over; for the time being this is the end of rambling press releases

Blog Posting Number: 1032

Tags: , ,

No comments: