Cisco unveils video wares

Cisco this week unveiled digital video products for cable operators designed to deliver video-on-demand (VoD) services.

The new products consist of the standalone uMG9820 quadrature amplitude modulation (QAM) Gateway and the uMG9850 QAM Module, which both serve as IP-to-MPEG-2 gateways between a Gigabit Ethernet transport network and a hybrid fiber-coaxial (HFC) cable network. The uMG9820 is targeted at smaller deployments, and the uMG9850 inserts into a Cisco Catalyst 4500 switch chassis for larger deployments or mixed switching-and-QAM architectures, Cisco says.

The systems allow for up to 240 standard-definition video streams per device, which Cisco says fully utilizes the capacity of a Gigabit Ethernet link. This alleviates the requirement for cable operators to daisy-chain QAM devices together to take full advantage of the capacity of a Gigabit Ethernet link, Cisco says.

This, in turn, eliminates the single points of failure associated with the QAM links in the chain and reduces the amount of QAM devices that need to be purchased and managed, the vendor says.

The uMG9820 QAM Gateway is hardware-configurable, meaning customers can incrementally add QAM cards to increase the density to a maximum of 24 QAM channels in a one-rack-unit chassis.

The Catalyst 4506 and Catalyst 4507R switches will support up to five uMG9850 QAM modules for a maximum of 120 QAM channels, allowing a cable operator to process up to 1,200 digital video streams in one device.

Both QAM products will begin shipping in February. Cisco will compete with Motorola, Scientific-Atlanta and Harmonics in this market.

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