CenturyLink recently announced that it is testing G.fast technology in an unnamed area populated with assorted apartment buildings. The company is trumpeting the test as “one of the earliest” trials of the new technology, which connects buildings to the fiber grid, but then extends the service to existing households or offices via existing copper or coaxial cabling, with speeds that promise to exceed current broadband levels. CenturyLink promised to reveal more about their G.fast plans in the very near future.
G.fast is attracting companies other than CenturyLink. AT&T said it plans to conduct lab trials, as well, and claims to be able to use existing Cat 5, Cat 6, or copper cables to deliver 300-500 Mbps to every tenant in a particular apartment or office building. Meanwhile, Windstream is currently testing G.fast in Lincoln, Nebraska, and due to the technology’s software-based elements such as SDN, the firm believes it can vastly improve its customer service while providing dramatic broadband speed increases.