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By Damon Watson | 13 February 2023 | 5 Comments

How does xPON differ from EPON/GPON?

Passive Optical Network (PON) plays a vital role in delivering broadband network access to end customers. It can transmit signals from a point to multipoint through an optical fiber. It consists of Optical Line Terminal (OLT), Optical Network Unit (ONU), and Optical Distribution Network (ODN). GPON and EPON are the most well-known and widely used types of PON. Before we get to know the mysterious xPON, let's learn EPON and GPON briefly.


GPON is popular for high bandwidth, multiple services, and large coverage. It's regarded as the ideal technology to realize full coverage of access to broadband networks. The maximum downstream and upstream rates are 2.5Gbps and 1.25Gbps.

EPON is based on the IEEE standard for Ethernet. It supports the transmission of 1 Gbps and 10 Gbps. It's more cost-effective in comparison with GPON.


However, with the development of technology and market demands, xPON appears. The application of xPON makes a difference in upgrading EPON to GPON and benefits users a lot.


Part I. What is xPON?


XPON is the integration of GPON and EPON in terms of hardware and software.


On the one hand, the upstream and downstream rates of GPON are higher than that of EPON. According to the downward compatibility of hardware, the mode of GPON network is considered as the standard of hardware indicators. For instance, it offers multiple services including TDM, ATM, Ethernet and CATV, which is the same as GPON. There is also QoS Guarantee.


On the other hand, the software will adopt the mode of automatic detection and switch. EPON/GPON OLT will deliver the network packets when ONU accesses them. The network packets can't be analyzed if ONU can't match the OLT mode. At this point, xPON ONU will automatically restart and switch into the other mode after seconds. The registration is done when the switch is finished.



Part II. Compared with GPON/EPON, what's the advantage of xPON?


The previous analysis of GPON vs EPON brings us the result that there are good points and bad points for both items. However, now we just need to choose xPON instead of hovering in GPON and EPON because xPON is able to identify them and switch the mode.


Besides, the xPON system provides a unified network management platform to manage various business requirements, support full service including ATM, Ethernet, and TDM with strict QoS guarantee, and transmit downstream cable TV through WDM. 


What's more, as we all know, GPON is becoming more and more popular. xPON will help save a lot if users want to replace EPON with GPON.


Part III. Application of xPON


In accordance with the market demands, V-SOL has developed various types of xPON ONU that support dual modes (EPON and GPON). Here listed 4 typical items.


1. 1GE Secure ONU

The product can also be applied to a wide temperature environment and has a powerful firewall function. It's compatible with popular OLT such as Huawei and ZTE.



This item can meet the telecom operator's requirements of tri-networks integration and FTTH. It's also fully compatible with OLT based on Broadcom/PMC/Cortina chipset.
XPON Application


It supports IPv4 and IPv6 dual stacks, SIP protocol and NAT. It features remote configuration and maintenance of OAM and OMCI.


4. 2GE+1POTS+1USB+ac WiFi Mesh ONU

It supports Wi-Fi CERTIFIED EasyMesh™, which is capable of guiding devices to the AP providing the best Wi-Fi service.



The great performance like high reliability, easy management and configuration flexibility of xPON begins to bring it into notice. It's believed that it will achieve a dominant position in fiber access to home or business (FTTH, FTTP, and  FTTC). Whether xPON or GPON/EPON, functions of which meet your needs are the right choices for you.

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