Cable Cable Takes Leadership Role with Remote PHY to Give Customers the Best Service

August 14, 2018


Cable Cable CEO Michael Fiorini believes in treating his customers like family, which explains why his Fenelon Falls company was one of the early adopters of Remote PHY in the Kawarthas.

Fiorini’s philosophy is family first, which meant Cable Cable was willing to take a leadership role with Remote PHY, a new technology simply because it would benefit his customers.

“In delivering the best experience possible for our customers it is necessary to maintain relevant and future-proofed networks,” said Fiorini. “Deploying Remote PHY and an IP Video over DOCSIS platform will allow Cable Cable to do just that.”

“With Remote PHY we have seen significant improvements in optical transport (analogue to IP) and overall node capacity (320Mb to 10Gb aggregate).  This will translate into faster internet speeds (up to 1Gb) and a better video offering using IPTV technology.”

Cable Cable is a family owned and locally operated telecommunications company, offering internet, TV and home-phone services.  The company started in 1983 and has been devoted to offering innovative technology, developing infrastructure and customer service excellence.

So, it should come as no surprise that the Cable Cable was interested in the Remote PHY technology, a type of new DOCSIS cable deployment where the physical “cable” related aspects of a cable modem termination system are in the field while the Internet Protocol (IP) components are at the cable headend location.

Cable Cable opted to work with Clearcable, a Hamilton telecommunications consulting firm, on the implementation of Remote PHY.  The two companies have a long history, dating back to the late ‘90s when Clearcable’s current principals, Rob and Ryan McCann, designed and installed the original DOCSIS network, which introduced internet as a service for Cable Cable customers.

The two companies started talking about the implementation of Remote PHY in December 2017.

“They were looking for a solution to extend their baseline capacity so they could deploy new services, one specifically being IPTV, which uses a lot more bandwidth,” said Adam Young, Clearcable Director of Broadband.  “By deploying remote PHY it makes it easier to start new services and that gives Cable Cable the ability to get into other areas that they might not have necessarily considered because it would have been too costly.”

Young added that with audience numbers for traditional TV dropping, services like IPTV are more important to operators than ever before.

“These days the bottom-line is being driven by data and the internet,” said Young.  “Cable Cable is really protecting its business for the future, and making sure that when the demand comes for new services they are ready to go.”

Young said it was a tribute to Cable Cable, that a smaller company can adjust more quickly to new services than some of heavyweights in the business.  He credited Lonny Tomczak, Director of Network Operations, at Cable Cable for playing a key role in the implementation of Remote PHY.

“It’s a unique environment to work as a Director of IT in a small company,” said Tomczak.  “You are able to span and sometimes eliminate the hurdles seen in the larger corporate dynamic. My relationship with our CEO Michael Fiorini allows me the opportunity to sit down and discuss in depth where we want to go and how and what we need to get there.”

Once production started, Young said Clearcable went through stages to verify the Remote PHY was in fact working properly. He discussed the verification process for new services and technology

“We had the growing pains of a new network, which is expected,” said Young.  “In those initial stages you are testing with friendly accounts and employees.  From there it’s onto another stage, test the highest-level usage and blanket the network.

“We had small issues, but proper planning meant that it wasn’t anything we didn’t anticipate. That’s why you are testing, so you can confront challenges before they reach the customer. It helped that we were able to collaborate with Lonny (Tomczak) and get real-time feedback from our monitoring tools.”

Tomczak worked with Clearcable from the beginning on planning and design, installation and support.

“Our customers are the single reason we exist,” said Tomczak. “Their demand for ultra-broadband speeds, better and more reliable networks, and innovative services set the stage for the inception of SDN and Remote PHY.”

“Implementing Remote PHY at Cable Cable keeps us competitive and delivers on our promise to provide a simply amazing internet experience to our subscribers.  It enabled us to lift the limitations we see in traditional analog nodes and push further down the rural superhighway to provide a best in class experience to our subscribers.”

That experience includes Cable Cable’s ability to push 10 gigs to the node, which adds significant improvements to the customer experience and delays costly operational expenses via node splitting.

“Together, Cable Cable along with the team at Clearcable, has hit a home run,” said Fiorini. “I extend my appreciation to Rob and Ryan for being there for us over the past 20 years – in support and friendship,” said Fiorini.