Passive optical networks (PONs) are low cost optical fiber solutions to expanding the broadband connection speeds in homes across the world. They are found in new housing developments and even replacing conventional twisted pair connections in some locations. Other uses include multi-dwelling installations, cellular backhaul and cable uplink. There are multiple PON standards but the Ethernet version (EPON) is attractive because of its Ethernet network compatibility. Atheros Communications recently announced some new chips that deliver full 10 Gb/s performance over EPON. The new products are the OPL-08850-AC2B optical network unit (ONU) that implements a full customer premise unit (CPE) and the OPL-08865-AC2B optical line terminal (OLT) that is used at the service providers central office (CO) that serves multiple ONUs. Both SoC chips are 802.3av compliant and are backwards compatible with 1 Gb/s EPON systems. Both chips are sampling now with production later this year. Reference designs are available. ATHEROS COMMUNICATIONS, San Jose, CA. (408) 773-5200.