Future Internet Access technologies are supposed to bring us a very performing connection to the main door of our homes. At the same time, new services and devices, as for example digital Audio-Video (AV) terminals (such as HDTV videos) and their increased use will require data transfers at speeds exceeding 1 Gbps inside the home at the horizon 2012. Both drivers lead to the deployment of a high-quality, future-proof network inside homes, to avoid a somehow ironic, but indeed possible situation, in which the Home Area Network (HAN) becomes the actual bottleneck of the full system. In this paper we review the requirements for next-generation HAN, showing that this environment may end up taking advantage of optical cabling solutions as an alternative to more traditional copper or pure wireless approaches.
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