ALLENTOWN, Pa. ( ChipWire)-- Lucent Technologies Inc. has announced a digital subscriber line chip that supports as many as eight channels of full-rate asymmetric DSL service. The company's WildWire Octal is the first eight-port ADSL product, the company said, and doubles the capacity of not only Lucent's current product but of most of the competition as well.
To increase the capacity for WildWire Octal, Lucent added an ARM processor core alongside the dual digital signal processors of its earlier ADSL product.
Dan DeGuzman, senior manager for the company's ADSL marketing group, said that the DSPs are used to pump data across a line but that the ARM core is used during the handshaking process that establishes each connection. The use of an ARM core frees up the DSPs to focus on maintaining the traffic flow once the connection is established. The handshaking "is the most intensivw part of the process," he said, and adding an ARM core "is a more efficient way to manage the startup process."
Lucent has also increased performance by shrinking the process geometry from 0.25 micron in the current WildWire quad offering, to 0.20 micron in the octal version.
By supporting eight channels on a single chip, carriers offering ADSL service can increase the number of high-bandwidth lines they can offer in a single DSLAM system, enabling a single central office to offer DSL service to more end users.
As telephone carriers rush to deploy DSL, they have been hindered by a lack of space in existing central offices, which in turn has resulted in delays in bringing the technology to market in higher volumes. DeGuzman said the new WildWire product can ease that space problem.
The WildWire Octal will begin sampling next quarter, and should ramp into volume production the following quarter. It lists for $160 apiece ($20 per port) in 100,000-unit shipments.
While the product will work with full-rate ADSL technology, it can also be used for other versions of ADSL, including the slower speed G.Lite format and the T1413ANSI standard version.