Australia’s NBN Co is set to become one of the first telcos in the world to introduce DOCSIS 3.1.

DOCSIS 3.1 supports download speeds of up to 10Gbps and up to 1Gbps upstream and by delivering data more efficiently can deliver up to 50% more data than is possible over current cable networks. Field trials of the technology will launch in the United States later this year.

More than three million homes and businesses in Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide, Sydney and the Gold Coast are earmarked to receive the National Broadband Network over the Hybrid Fibre Coaxial (HFC) cables that currently deliver broadband and pay-TV services to Telstra and Optus customers.

In deals struck last December*], NBN Co will progressively take ownership of these cables and incorporate them into the National Broadband Network.

“NBN will utilise a network that is already deployed across millions of homes and businesses in Australia,” said Dennis Steiger, NBN Co’s CTO, at the Cbale Congress in Brussels.

“By re-architecting the ratio of homes to a node and the use of the latest technology underpinning DOCSIS 3.1, Australia’s HFC network will become one of the most state-of-the-art technologies used to deploy broadband services.

“Effectively, this technology has the potential to offer speeds equivalent to what’s on offer by full fibre to the premises and up to 100 times faster (up to 10Gbps) than what is currently provided by today’s HFC network.

“It’s the same philosophy that’s driving our entire multi-technology rollout. All the technologies we’re using have an upgrade path to deliver higher speeds and greater capacity. That’s good news for families and businesses.”