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Will Provide the Greater Uplink Bandwidth Needed for Access Network Upgrades

BOSTON (February 23, 2023) – Demand for 100ZR coherent pluggables will emerge in 2024 as operators upgrade to higher speeds in optical access networks. This pluggable fills a critical gap for access hardware manufacturers by offering higher speeds than 10Gbps, according to the latest report, “Coherent at the Network Edge.” Cignal AI consulted with component makers, hardware manufacturers, and network operators to identify the requirements and potential catalysts for the 100ZR market for a comprehensive outlook on this new technology.

“It was important to discuss the requirements and viability of this technology with the hardware designers and end users, not just the component manufacturers,” said Scott Wilkinson, Lead Analyst for Optical Components at Cignal AI. “We learned that dedicated QSFP28-based 100ZR modules will fill a central role in the next generation of fiber access networks.”

More Key Findings from the Coherent at the Network Edge Report:

  • QSFP28 versions of 100ZR will win most of the access market. QSFP-DD versions based on 400ZR technology do not meet critical size and power needs at the network’s edge.
  • Access network upgrades will drive 100ZR demand when Enterprise and mobile traffic coexists on the same network.
  • Price is not the primary driver in situations where 100ZR is the best solution, but it must be significantly less than the current 400ZR pricing to replace 10G.
  • Market demand and general availability of 100ZR components will align in 2024.
  • As a result of these discussions with access hardware manufacturers, Cignal AI’s forecast for 100ZR module shipments was doubled for 2025.

About the Report

The “Coherent at the Network Edge” report is included as part of Cignal AI’s Active Insight research service, which provides real-time reporting on important developments in the optical market. This free service is included with subscriptions to our Transport Hardware and Optical Component reports and is available as a standalone subscription to Network Operators and Investors. Active Insight reports provide detailed analysis of new product launches, show reports, summaries of quarterly earnings calls, and vendor reports.

Companies included or that contributed to this Active Insight report include Acacia, Adtran, ADVA, Calix, Ciena, Cisco, Coherent, DZS, Effect Photonics, Innolight, Marvell, Nokia, OE Solutions, and Ribbon.

About Cignal AI

Cignal AI provides active and insightful market research for the networking component and equipment market and the market’s end customers. Our work blends expertise from a variety of disciplines to create a uniquely informed perspective on the evolution of networking communications.

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