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Huawei Advances All-Optical Connectivity via New Target Network Architecture

Nov 15, 2021

[Shenzhen, China, November 15, 2021] At the 8th Huawei Optical Innovation Forum this week, Huawei released a new all-optical target network architecture that delivers optical, latency-free performance to all connected devices. The new architecture brings to industry and home users enormous amounts of bandwidth while reducing operators total cost of ownership (TCO). It also enables network operators to monetize new products and services while boosting their green credentials.

End-to-end optical connectivity is the ultimate form of network construction and design. Optical fiber offers practically unlimited bandwidth, light-speed latency, and requires far less electricity to operate than either copper cabling or wireless base stations. Fully optical networks are the perfect solution for addressing the bandwidth appetite of emerging applications like the metaverse, digital twins, and cloud gaming. But until now, building a fully optical network has been challenging and relatively costly.

Huawei proposes to build all-optical target networks that rest on five pillars, called the Five Ones:

  • One-kilometer access: In wireless networks, the majority of base stations are located within 1km of users.  By using existing base stations as access points for local distribution of fiber, the challenge of providing optical connectivity to all terminals is reduced.
  • One-stop all-optical access: By deploying optical transport network (OTN) equipment closer to the end-user, operators can provide both high-service level, and differentiated Service Level Agreements (SLAs) to commercial customers.
  • One-network all-optical slicing: Optical slicing allows operators to offer premium services to users willing to pay for guaranteed levels of performance.  Distributed deployment of OTN partly helps to achieve this, but another key element is to distribute all-optical cross connects (OXCs) throughout the network.  Huawei pioneered the development of all-optical OXCs, equipment that allows to switch optical data signals at light speed, without converting it to electrical.
  • One-hop connection architecture: Consolidating the integration of an existing optical transport network with a recently-upgraded all-optical metro network enhances user experience. It opens the door to practically instantaneous cloud access and networks offering guaranteed, deterministic latency not exceeding a few milliseconds.
  • One-click smart operation: Optical controls help to deliver a digital transformation of networks, where all communications hardware is connected and remotely monitored. This enables the autonomous operation of networks, or autonomous network driving.

Huawei recently participated in the implementation of several networks in Europe, the Middle-East, and Asia providing end-to-end optical connectivity to all devices.  These new networks serve as a new telecommunications benchmark.  Richard Jin, President of Huawei's Optical Business Product Line, said, “After more than a year of innovation with customers from around the world, we truly believe that an all-optical target network is the best choice for global operators looking to achieve an optimal TCO in fixed and 5G mobile backhaul, while inspiring new growth in home broadband and enterprise private line business.”