The Home Phoneline Networking Alliance (HomePNA) today announced the approval of a joint technology proposal for HomePNA 3.0, a next generation specification for the home data networking standard. It’s the next step towards the ratification of a firm HomePNA 3.0 standard, which the group hopes to have done by the year’s end.
Proposed by Broadcom Corp. and CopperGate Communication Inc., HomePNA 3.0 increases the throughput rate to 128Mbps and can coexist with other technologies like regular telephone service, ISDN and ADSL. It’s also completely backwards compatible with today’s HomePNA 2.0 standard. Version 3.0 will also support the Voice-over-HomePNA protocol with up to eight streams within the home.
HomePNA — compatible with the Macintosh and PC but often overlooked by Mac users preferring wireless technology — utilizes the regular telephone wiring inside a house for data communications as well. Adoption of the technology has been slow with 10Mbps and 1Mbps transfer rates offering speeds only comparable to or lower than what many can accomplish with 802.11b wireless networking, or a conventional Ethernet configuration. HomePNA 3.0 is focused on changing that, and its proponents are positioning it as a future standard for multimedia technology in the house.
HomePNA president John Marshall said that HomePNA 3.0 features technology essential to handing services like multiple HDTV, digital audio and voice streams within the home.
The group hopes to see HomePNA 3.0’s specification finalized by the end of the year. Hardware featuring HomePNA 3.0 support is anticipated from multiple vendors sometime in early 2003.