Gazettabyte’s 10th anniversary 
Monday, October 7, 2019 at 12:26PM
Roy Rubenstein in Gazettabyte, anniversary

Gazettabytes 10th anniversary passed quietly sometime in August. 

The work to create the website started earlier, as did the writing of the first stories to ensure there was content when the site went live in August 2009.

Gazettabyte has since published hundreds of stories and articles covering emerging technologies in the telecom and datacom industries. 

The stories highlight the many changes that have taken place over the last decade.


Continual change 

Many optical component firms have either folded or have been acquired, including industry-leading firms, in the last decade. 

For example, the first Gazettabyte story featured the start-up, OneChip Photonics, that made photonic integrated circuits (PICs) for fibre-to-the-x (FTTx). The company had just received $19.5m in funding. 

The companys technology was impressive but the FTTx market experienced ongoing cost reductions with companies pushing discretes such that the promised benefits of integration didn't materialise. The start-up, with leading PIC expertise, folded.

There was also an interview with BT about 10G PON in 2009. This highlights another trend in telecoms, technology can take a long time to come to market.

The fastest optical interfaces at the time were 40 and 100 gigabit-per-second. 

Fast-forward ten years and now the talk is of 800-gigabit client-side modules and terabit-plus coherent interfaces. 

Acacia, an example of a leading player being acquired, recently announced its second-generation AC1200 coherent module that supports 1.2 terabits in a 150-gigahertz optical channel. Nokia has just given a hint about its next-generation 100-gigabaud coherent solution - the PSE-4? - with a 1.3-terabit single-wavelength trial over 93km. The total capacity transmitted over the fibre using Nokia's technology was 50.8 terabits. 

The last decade has also witnessed the continual rise of the internet giants that deliver double-digit yearly revenue growth. Such hyperscalers have become significant consumers of optics and drivers of technology. 

Their rise has also stirred the telecoms industry, with the network operators embarking on a radical re-architecting of how they build and operate their networks. 

The network operators have seen how the hyperscalers use software and commercial-off-the-shelf hardware and they too want the benefits of disaggregated designs and open networking.

The rise of China is a further key development of the last decade. Chinas unbridled ambition has seen it become a huge driver, manufacturer and consumer of leading telecom and datacom technologies. 

Change on this scale is unsettling. But it is also to be welcomed. It shows telecom and datacom as healthy industries despite being mature.

Typically, a mature industry is settled: two or three players dominate a segment, the barrier for entry for start-ups is excessively high, and little changes with time.  

No close observer of telecom and datacom would describe them as plodding industries.    


Past and present 

Over the years, Gazettabyte has conducted several feature series. These include CEO and CTO interviews, an acknowledgement of the silicon photonics pioneers and luminaries including Professor Richard Soref, described by another silicon photonics luminary, Andrew Rickman, as the 'founding father of silicon photonics'. 

Gazettabyte also proved a valuable resource during the writing of a book on silicon photonics that was co-authored with OFS Fitel’s Daryl Inniss.

Gazettabyte will mark its 10th anniversary with a series of features and special interviews. 

It will revisit the CTO interviews and will focus on some key topics: the network transformation being undertaken by the telcos, co-packaged optics, and certain other key emerging technologies.  

The first CTO interview will be published next, Lumentums Brandon Collings, an ongoing insightful source for Gazettabyte.

This is also an opportunity to acknowledge the sponsors of the site, many of whom have supported Gazettabyte from the start. 

Without Gazettabytes backers  - ADVA, Ciena, Huawei, Infinera, Intel, LightCounting, Lumentum, Nokia, II-VI (Finisar) - the site would not exist. 

Article originally appeared on Gazettabyte (
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