Communications are an increasingly vital factor for economies around the world and as we adapt to the new ‘’normal’’ we become even more dependent on reliable and stable connectivity. The importance of having a robust network solution that can be rolled out seamlessly and efficiently is more evident than before. To deliver on the need for reliable connectivity, we have partnered with Siklu. They offer a complete end-to-end multi-gigabit wireless network solution with their vast range of 60GHz (V-Band) and 70/80GHz (E-Band) solutions for both point-to-point and point-to-multipoint applications.
Siklu’s offering truly encompasses and addresses small to sizeable applications and its appeal to ISPs has entrenched it in 40 countries worldwide. “This entrenchment has been earned,” says Ted de Boer, MiRO product manager for Siklu. “Siklu is a supplier of carrier-grade equipment that offers reliability, speed, low latency, superior security, as well as predictable performance. On top of which, they offer online e-learning, support, planning tools and more.’’
“It also has a high mean time between failure (MTBF) – of more than 70 years, which underlines its reliability. This also makes it a good capital investment, especially when considering that it can be repurposed for a good time to come.
- Unmatched capacity
Capacity is exceptionally viewed against any other license-exempt or fully-licensed solution. An ISP can start off with 1Gbps full-duplex capacity and upgrade to a 2Gbps link, or even opt for a 2Gbps link that is upgradable to 10Gbps. Future capacity will move towards 20Gbps and 40Gbps deployments. With E-Band deployments being flexible and quick in terms of licencing, at any point an upgrade to a faster model is possible and links can be repurposed; for example to be used as an upgrade for lower capacity links that need upgrading elsewhere in the network. Upgrades can begin from the core and move outwards as capacity grows. Lead-time for the deployment of a light licensed E-band link is pretty much non-existent as stock is always readily available.
- Low latency
Low latency is essential, especially with shorter link distances, which require multiple hops to cover longer links. Siklu sports an average latency of less than one millisecond (ms), typically around the 0.4ms level. “This is great,” continues de Boer, “because the lower the latency, the faster the response time for the end-user and the less your network gets clogged.”
- 99.999% Predictability
“The level of radio performance predictability is also high. E-band is only affected by rain. We can rely upon 50 years’ worth of rain statistics to give us a 99.999% predictability when it comes to performance in inclement weather. “We know that our ISPs like to push the boundaries of what is possible, which may lead to deteriorated performance when links are literally stretched to the maximum of their capabilities. However, with forward planning, sticking to the limits of what is possible, and having your own uptime requirements, there is a ton of versatility when it comes to the different distances, link configurations and setups available to you.”
Describing the security details, de Boer says that Siklu has an interesting structure. “Typically you would see AES encryption featuring on equipment at this price level. However, with Siklu it is actually an additional hardware option. The reason for this is because encryption and decryption at these throughput levels require an additional expensive processing unit.
“The reason for making AES encryption optional is because the radio signals between two Siklu structures are practically un-hackable. It is a millimetre-wave radio, thus the beam is about half a degree wide on a two-foot antenna. This means that the beam is literally laser-thin versus, for example, 5GHz radio beams that have a very wide Fresnel zone. Effectively, de Boer explains, a hacker would have to be in the direct line of sight with an identical radio, sitting in front of the receiving radio, in order to even pick up the signal. This would also disrupt the signal and the user would immediately pick up on this, as the link would go down. Theoretically, it is thus highly unlikely that a signal could be hacked into at all, thus negating the need for expensive built-in encryption hardware, saving the end-user on costs.”
E-Band offers endless scalability, cost-efficiency and has an extreme level of co-location which is important with streaming services moving to 4K UHD video, soon to be 8K. Virtual reality and remote gaming services also require high amounts of bandwidth. This means that soon, E-Band will be the only option for ISPs around the globe!
Written by: Rebecca Haynes