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Note: Many topics at this site are reduced versions of the text in "The Encyclopedia of Networking and Telecommunications." Search results will not be as extensive as a search of the book's CD-ROM.

PacketCable is a residential IP voice service for cable data networks developed by CableLabs. The PacketCable initiative is designed to develop interoperable specifications to support real-time multimedia services over two-way cable plants. PacketCable works with new cable data modems. While initially targeted at IP telephony, PacketCable supports a range of multimedia services including multimedia conferencing, interactive gaming, and general multimedia applications. CableLabs provides product compliance services for the PacketCable specification.

CableLabs was instrumental in the DOCSIS cable modem standard, which allows two-way connections over cable networks. See "DOCSIS (Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification)" for more information. CableLabs also developed an IP broadcasting initiative called OpenCable.

Voice over IP services via DOCSIS has many advantages, including low-cost communications capabilities and the ability to configure multiple phone lines and phone numbers. Phones are connected to DOCSIS-compliant cable modems that support PacketCable. Calls are established on virtual circuits across the cable network.

CableLabs members include companies such as AT&T Broadband; Charter Communications; Comcast Corporation; Cox Communications; MediaOne; Rogers Cablesystems, Ltd.; and Time Warner Cable.

Copyright (c) 2001 Tom Sheldon and Big Sur Multimedia.
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