Gigabit Passive Optical Network solution from Freescale enables triple play at the speed of light

 David Lammers

SAN JOSE, Calif. (Embedded Systems Conference) – April 2, 2007 – The delivery of rich digital content to the home and small office via fiber takes a major step toward reality today with the introduction of the MSC7120 from Freescale Semiconductor – the industry’s first voice-enabled Gigabit Passive Optical Networking (GPON) SoC.

The multi-core MSC7120 integrates a Power Architecture™ CPU, a StarCore™ DSP and a data path engine to deliver a complete PON sub-system in a single device. It addresses the high data forwarding throughput requirements of several applications including the delivery of “triple play” (voice, video and data) broadband services to the home or small business.
“Featuring industry-leading integration, ultra-high performance and production-ready enablement options, the MSC7120 takes broadband data delivery over optical fiber technology to a new level,” said Ritu Favre, director and general manager of Freescale’s Digital Home Division. “This new part, together with our strong industry relationships and established history in the PON space positions Freescale for early leadership in the GPON market.”
Freescale and Alcatel-Lucent, the dominant supplier of GPON equipment worldwide, initiated joint development of the MSC7120 after the companies agreed in 2005 to collaborate on delivering compatible, interoperable and cost-effective GPON technology to the market.
“As a market leader in GPON, we see this announcement as an illustration of how GPON technology is evolving and maturing,” said Mike Dobbs, senior vice president for Alcatel-Lucent’s Access Division. “Freescale has a proven technology and this important step now enables the network appliance community to provide industry-compatible GPON devices at an affordable cost.”

GPON technology supports the convergence of IP over optical networks, offering connection speeds much higher than today’s DSL- or DOCSIS-based networks. It is a key enabler for bandwidth-hungry “triple play” applications such as HDTV and Video on Demand.

Analyst firm IDC forecasts that worldwide consumer and small business broadband subscriptions will grow to approximately 400M subscriptions by 2010. As the number of broadband subscribers worldwide expands, GPON is recognized as an emerging solution to challenges that threaten to constrict delivery of rich content to end consumers over “last mile” infrastructure.

“Over the next few years, GPON technology will become a viable solution for increasing bandwidth in today's access networks, especially as carriers address the increasing demand for video as a key element of their ‘triple play’ services," said Aileen Arcilla, senior research analyst at IDC.

About the MSC7120

The MSC7120 combines the high channel voice density of Freescale’s MSC711x DSP device with the high-speed networking capabilities of the PowerQUICC™ II Pro platform featuring Power Architecture™ technology, a GPON media access controller (MAC) and Freescale’s packet engine, which achieves Gigabit wire rate packet forwarding. The device supports the G.984 GPON GEM protocol and is designed to be compliant with the ITU-T standards.

Development Tools and Software

Development tools, hardware platforms, software building blocks and application specific software solutions for the MSC7120 are available. The software includes real-time operating system support for the StarCore DSP and Power Architecture cores and a variety of applications software including DSP voice framework, signaling stacks and GPON software stacks.

Through an agreement between Alcatel-Lucent and Freescale, terminal vendors can license critical technologies, including a reference design and support for GPON that is compliant with Alcatel-Lucent’s 7342 ISAM fiber-to-the-user (FTTU) product family. Announced in February 2007, this agreement facilitates adoption of fiber-to-the-home technologies with jointly-developed GPON technology and interoperability specifications. The expected result is faster time-to-market by providing a production-ready, standards-compliant reference design for GPON ONTs.

Freescale also is engaged with other alpha customers to help ensure interoperability with a variety of specifications. In addition, the company plans to participate in a Full Service Access Network (FSAN) group interoperability event scheduled for May 2007.


Freescale is now sampling the MSC7120 to alpha customers. It is offered in a 456-pin thermally enhanced PBGA package. Please contact Freescale Sales for pricing.

About StarCore® DSP Technology from Freescale

StarCore DSP technology from Freescale is the driving force behind some of the most sophisticated, flexible and powerful digital signal processing devices in the industry. It enables the creation of highly advanced DSP products uniquely suited to address current and emerging market requirements. StarCore technology runs more applications with less – less power, fewer components and lower cost. Freescale Semiconductor is actively charting the course for future generations of StarCore architectures.
About Freescale Semiconductor

Freescale Semiconductor, Inc. is a global leader in the design and manufacture of embedded semiconductors for the automotive, consumer, industrial, networking and wireless markets. The privately held company is based in Austin, Texas, and has design, research and development, manufacturing or sales operations in more than 30 countries. Freescale is one of the world's largest semiconductor companies with 2006 sales of $6.4 billion (USD).
Freescale Technology Forum
The Freescale Technology Forum (FTF) has become the developer event of the year for the embedded semiconductor industry. The Forum, which debuted in 2005, has been enthusiastically received by the global developer community, drawing more than 12,000 attendees at FTF events worldwide since its inception. For more information about FTF events, please go to
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Domain: Electronics
Category: Semiconductors
Contact Person Address: Freescale
Posted By: David Lammers and Contact David Lammers
Tuesday, November 14, 2017, Fairmont San Jose
170 S Market St, San Jose, CA 95113

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