30 years ago we set out to invent the future. Since then, we have never stopped re-inventing ourselves.

Let's retrace our steps,
starting at the very beginning...

1988

The Television Boom is Here

Burgeoning technical developments in TV and fiber optics usher in a new digital era. Cable, a fringe technology just a few years before, is now in 51% of U.S. households. The industry is exploding with over 11,000 cable operators competing in the same space and Dick Green, John Malone and Dick Leghorn know that for Cable to succeed, all players—big and small—need to come together. They create a non-profit organization to help guide cable operators through this time of great innovation. CableLabs is born. And so is channel surfing.

The Cable Cowboys

Richard Green

Dick Green becomes the very first CableLabs CEO and will continue to serve in the role for 20 years before retiring in 2008. Under his leadership, CableLabs lives up to its founders' vision, becoming an innovation engine for the entire industry.

John Malone

One of the most influential men in media, John Malone has a deep understanding of the way this industry works. In 1988, John writes a letter to all the cable companies, formulating what essentially becomes a blueprint for CableLabs.

Richard Leghorn

A military hero, an MIT graduate, and a true cable industry pioneer. When all the other cable CEOs were too busy amassing smaller cable systems, Dick convinced them that an industry-wide R&D organization is the key to the future.

HDTV development is well underway

You can even own one for about $30,000.

1992

Watch out for Broadband Explosion

The invention of hybrid fiber coax (HFC) changes everything. Now the cable that delivers video signal can also deliver data—and a lot of it. The Internet is all the rage and you happily upgrade to a brand new cable modem. It’s blazing fast and much more convenient than dial-up or DSL. What you might not know is: CableLabs is directly responsible for putting that modem in your home. Thanks to CableLabs’ Data-Over-Cable Interface Specification, or DOCSIS for short, manufacturers are able to produce cheaper and faster cable modems, compatible with any cable operator. And just like that, cable becomes a major catalyst for the Information Age.

1992

Fiber is the "it" technology of the day. Companies begin feverishly buying and installing Hybrid Fiber Coax, the new "backbone" of the cable system, which can now delivery broadband to millions of homes.

1996

CableLabs releases MPEG-LA, the new digital video encoding standard that allows companies to put 20 channels inside of one, thus rapidly increasing their channel carrying capacity.

1997

DOCSIS, a true shining moment for CableLabs, is here. Considered one of the most important tech standards for cable modems, it helps brings high-speed internet to more people than ever before.

1999

Cable gets into home phone business with the help of PacketCable, a technology specification that allows the delivery of real-time voice and multimedia traffic over the cable network. Hello, Triple Play.
Nearly 2.3 billion DOCSIS modems have been shipped since 2000.

CableLabs wins an Emmy for DOCSIS 3.0

Do you think the red carpet is rolled out only for the Hollywood elite? After the release of DOCSIS 3.0 in 2010, CableLabs has won its first Technology & Engineering Emmy Award for enabling "the delivery of television via broadband data systems."

No More World Wide Waiting

Before cable modems, a webpage took 32 seconds to download. After—2.7 seconds.

2015

Welcome to the Era of Connectivity

There was a time when a smart device seemed like a prop from a sci-fi movie and today life without constant access to everyone and everything seems primitive and terribly inconvenient. Now, you and billions of your planetmates are ready for the next chapter. CableLabs gets it. Placing more emphasis on long-term innovation, we launch Kyrio and UpRamp, two CableLabs subsidiaries that focus on providing technical support and other essential resources to tech visionaries and radical entrepreneurs from inside and outside the cable industry. This bold move accelerates the innovation timeline and helps put the latest tech in your hands faster than ever before.

Half a billion people use CableLabs technology every day.

2012

In a new world of on-demand content, mobile apps, and cloud-based technologies, consumer need for more bandwidth and speed is growing at an unprecedented rate. Coherent Optics technology saves the say. For now.

2016

CableLabs brings DOCSIS into the new century. The brand new Full Duplex DOCSIS skyrockets the HFC network capacity, allowing multi-gigabit uploads and downloads at the same time.

Over the last few years, CableLabs has been putting even more emphasis on innovation. Through unique programs like UpRamp, CableLabs can now seek out radical entrepreneurs and put them in touch with the top minds and decision makers within the connectivity industry to help bring more state-of-the-art technologies to market. Since the start of the program, CableLabs has introduced over 500 startups to the cable industry.

More on UpRamp

As Cable Labs matured, its leadership began thinking of expanding the impact of CableLabs technologies. Originally founded under the name NetworkFX, Kyrio became the conduit for bringing broadband, security, networking, and testing services to device manufacturers and businesses outside the traditional cable market. Today, Kyrio's state-of-the-art testing lab boasts 180 test benches, 175 racks of equipment, and over $120 million worth of investment, allowing companies to ensure their latest innovations are bug-free and ready for consumer use. Fun fact: Kyrio comes from the Greek word "kyrios" meaning "lord" or "master."

More on Kyrio

2048

Hyperconnectivity is the Future

Our smart devices, cars and homes are in constant communication and anything you need is always a simple swipe or voice command away. VR, AR and AI are omnipresent, touching every part of your personal and professional life. The network capacity supporting your effortless lifestyle is beyond what you would have imagined a few decades ago. But, CableLabs did. In 2018, our visionary leaders and technologists had the foresight to steer toward today’s reality—a seamless, instant connection to everything and everyone you know and love.

Autonomous Vehicles

Remember when cars had steering wheels? Now your car safely drives you anywhere you want to go. It also plays your favorite music, knows you schedule, checks your email, and automatically updates itself by connecting to your low-latency, high-speed home network. And yes, it can parallel park like a pro.

Smart Connected Living

Everything in your home, from your coffee maker to showerhead, is perfectly calibrated to your preferences by AI. Less involvement in house maintenance frees up a ton of time for more important things, like communicating with your loved-ones over long-distance VR and playing immersive AR games with your kids.

New Ways to Work and Learn

"Face time" has gotten a lot easier. Now you can collaborate with your colleagues from anywhere via "video walls" and gorgeous interfaces that bring everyone into the same virtual space. Plus, rich-media technology, like a holographic table, makes for an effective 3-D presentation and learning tool that turns any space into an office or classroom.

Effortless Smart Healthcare

Technology advancements in the medical field have revolutionized the healthcare industry. Advanced MRI systems, smart drugs, nano-surgery, wearable monitors, remote diagnostics tools, and VR-enabled check-ups with your doc take the worry away, giving you unprecedented freedom to live your life the way you want.

“What we do today affects an entire industry and—in the end—it affects everybody.”
-Dr. Richard R. Green, First President & CEO, CableLabs