Coax-based home networks to pick up speed

Supporting throughput of up to 2.5 gigabits per second, the new MoCA 2.5 spec promises a speedy future for networks based on cable-TV cables.

The newest version of the MoCA standard for home networks based on the coaxial cabling used for cable-TV installations supports speeds of up to 2.5 gigabits per second—that’s more than double the maximum 1.0Gbps maximum throughput of MoCA 2.0.

The Multimedia over Coax Alliance, which develops the standard and announced the new version today, said the dramatic speed increase was just one of several improvements in MoCA 2.5. Others include a new push-button setup protocol (similar to Wi-Fi’s WPS); support for improved security; and various features aimed at ensuring smooth operation of networks that include legacy (e.g. MoCA 1.1 and 2.0) adapters.

Like its predecessor, MoCA 2.5 supports three different performance profiles. Only the fastest will support 2.5Gbps throughput; the slowest profile’s minimum speed is 400 megabits per second.

Why coax?

While Wi-Fi remains by far the most popular network medium, it’s not always the most reliable for streaming media—especially in crowded environments where multiple Wi-Fi networks must compete for limited bandwidth. Wired networks can do better, but most homes don’t have ethernet cabling, and installing it is expensive. So more and more consumers and Internet service providers are turning to networks based on pre-existing wiring—most commonly electrical circuitry (via HomePlug-based equipment) or coax (the basis for MoCA). Cable companies tasked with installing home networks as well as Internet service are the biggest backers of MoCA, and many features of the new spec were designed with those operators in mind.

Some do-it-yourselfers have already set up networks based on MoCA adapters sold at retail by companies such as Actiontec. Also, the new TiVo Bolt has MoCA 2.0 networking support built in; several older TiVo models support MoCA 1.1.

It will probably be at least a year before either operators or consumers have access to actual products based on the new spec, which is backwards compatible with MoCA 1.1 and 2.0.

MoCA Alliance spokesman Rob Gelphman says today’s announcement is not so much a call to upgrade as it is assurance to current and prospective MoCA customers—some of whom may already be dissatisfied with performance on a Wi-Fi-based network—that the MoCA standard is preparing for an ever more bandwidth-hungry future.

“This is a road map,” Gelphman said. “This is where it’s going. If you commit to MoCA, now you know there will be these faster speed grades.” As a MoCA customer today, Gelphman added, “I may not need the speed now. But I want to know that I have a migration path when I’m ready.”

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags internetNBN

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Yardena Arar

TechHive (US)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?