What deployment specific features would you like to see on Cambium Fiber XGSPON OLT?

What key features would you like to see on Cambium Fiber XGSPON OLT?

Your thoughts and experience is highly appreciated.

The fewer features the better. Do a few things and do them really well.

VLANs obviously, Option 82 / 37, router mode, IPv6 throughout.

Focus more on form factor. The full ‘kit’ to service a customer. On the OLT side there’s isn’t a ton to be done for rack mount, but consider the ‘remote DSLAM’ model with a small form factor OLT that is 1/2 depth or shorter or even in a self contained box.

AC and DC power options.

No to be too direct here, but look at Ubiquiti’s option is ‘all the right bits, poorly executed’ and just do that better. Smaller OLT options, not everyone needs 8 ports, a lot of shops would be super happy with 1-2 ports for example.

  1. Combo option XGPON/GPON on the same optic.

  2. Allow it to run stand-alone without a cloud management. If the network loses access to the cloud (or the cloud is down), the system should run indefinitely.

  3. Additionally, changes made locally should be pushed up to the controller (cloud) so that its not only top-down management. Of course, top down management is preferable.

  4. AC and DC hot-swap power supplies (front of OLT not rear)

  5. Generic GPON without extra overhead so we can drop in place of UBNT OLT and grow.

It would be nice to be denser than 8 per U but its not bad.

We have a couple thousand ONU across a few dozen OLT with UFiber. No real complaints. I just am always leery of UBNT pulling the rug out from under us and dropping production.

  1. Calix E-7 OLT’s documentation is infuriating, if you can actually find it at all.

  2. Good luck finding firmware, or having a clue if you can push it out to clients without breaking things badly. They keep trying to push you to cloud everything. Which I think means you’re really renting your customers from them.

  3. Their GUI interface is - sucks, just sucks. Very difficult to navigate.

  4. But once you get them up and going they sort of just run.

  5. They spam you within an inch of your life with marketing materials.

  6. They are purple though, and 3-4x the cost of similar units being pushed into the market.

  7. No one ever got fired for deploying Calix though, so I guess there’s that.

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A gui that works. Unlike Cambiums current switch line. (That is truly an awful GUI)
A product that has nothing to do with CNMaestro. Nor any requirement to use it.
And it not cost $10,000.


Smart OLT Compatibility

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A product that has nothing to do with CNMaestro

lol not happening. Vector Capital, which owns Cambium and where the name of the new wireless product line originates from, has decreed cnMaestro as the new path forward to generate revenue. cnMaestro literally has a process that runs named monetizer lol

From the most recent Cambium 10-K filing:


We deploy Calix GPON with their EXOS platform, but I’m leaning towards more open options like Tibit for future deployments. That said, having cnMaestro tie-in for monitoring with the rest of our WISP equipment would be exciting.

Ability to work with generic ONTs. The WISP industry is plagued with closed, proprietary standards and Having that support would be appreciated when dealing with supply chain issues or re-using hardware from other vendors, perhaps when replacing a Calix OLT with a Cambium one. If we wanted to get into Cambium GPON, being able to drop in a new OLT into the existing network and have all of our 803G ONTs pop up and work immediately would be a lot better than spending the manpower swapping out all ONTs with an new model that uses the same underlying standard.

No per-ONT subscriptions. Not every GPON/XGSPON system will be used in an ISP environment, especially if the Cambium stuff is friendly to use compared to the competition. Smart-city/smart-grid applications, enterprise, distributed sensor and surveillance networks and public WiFi are many examples of non-revenue producing endpoints where per-endpoint costs will stifle innovation. For the ISPs, a lot of rural broadband funding available is only for capital costs, so leaning toward an option with less subscriptions involved will be a lot more attractive when the capital costs are being subsidized anyway.

A complete API and webhooks for all functions/events. Integration with our CRM is pretty important.

Local management GUIs and APIs. For more high-security and air-gapped type networks used for things like security cameras and SCADA, having the option for basic configuration and operation without external servers can help them slot into more existing networks.

OLTs with 2-4 ports and a smaller chassis with DC power input. Something like the uFiber OLT 4 is great for small, existing WISP sites that might have good backhaul and are surrounded by a tight cluster of customers. These could be installed in smaller pole-mounted cabinets with simple DC power systems (DIN rail systems from ICT/Meanwell).

An outdoor WiFi ONT. A cnPilot outdoor AP with PoE / DC-in and a GPON/XGSPON interface would be useful for campground and public WiFi deployments.

Ruggedized ONTs with wide temperature ranges, ability to tolerate moisture, and a wide DC-in voltage (12-60v), for use in industrial, security, utilities/SCADA, off-grid, outdoor public WiFi, small-cell backhaul and more. A lot of those types of deployments have high-quality DC power available to them, being able to attach an ONT directly without conversion would be helpful.

An MDU switch ONT. For MDUs, it would be nice to have a few options of ONTs with 4-8 RJ45, and larger 16-24 RJ45 port options that can have each port provisioned separately with its own description/identifier. PoE would also be a good thing to have for common-area public WiFi or per-unit PoE APs.

A decent mesh WiFi system. We’ve been pretty disappointed by the performance of the R195W and R201 and have replaced nearly all of them with Mikrotik devices that were way more consistent. Now would be a good time for Cambium to released a decent WiFi 6 mesh option. Ethernet and GPON/XGSPON WAN options would be preferred.

A web portal or app for installers. If we could say, scan a QR code on the bottom of the ONT and immediately be able to start inputting info like the device name, filling the variables for config templates, ect to have the device provisioned, that would be handy. Having webhooks that fire after a new ONT is added would be important as well.

“Roaming” ONTs. This is a minor nitpick, but on our Calix system we can’t really have an ONT move between ports without being reprovisioned. This is mildly annoying for installers who want to have a ready-to-go ONT that’s pre-provisioned where they can hook it up and get quick internet access. For example, if they’re in an area with no cell service and need to access web-based provisioning tools or use WiFi calling to reach out to the helpdesk. Perhaps there could be a default profile for these types of devices on each OLT. I could also see this being helpful for campground type deployments where you might have a maintenance guy doing a lot of temporary installs in trailers, that person could just grab an ONT off the stack and put it anywhere.


Don’t do it. Or you’ll become another Ubiquiti or Mikrotik. You’re barely keeping with ePMP Wireless product line, so having your resources and attention devoted to Fiber products won’t help to improve quality over all product lines.

There are already lots of good GPON hardware vendors out there. Some of them have so much experience that you’ll never catch up. Our GPON equipment is like a fridge - plug it in and forget, works without absolutely any maintenance whatsoever for years…

Please, focus on ePMP and wireless in general.


I think there’s room in the marketplace, especially with $10K line cards being typical with the big guys, and much interest in OLT’s that are a third of the price hitting the market that don’t have the vicious vendor lock-in with subs.

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