The Association for Passive Optical LAN Honors 2020 APOLAN Award Winners

Annual member award showcases the innovation, education and promotion of Passive Optical LAN as the industry’s preferred LAN solution

NEW YORK, Feb. 24, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Association for Passive Optical LAN (APOLAN), the non-profit organization advocating for the education and global adoption for Passive Optical Local Area Networks (POL), today announced the winners of the 2020 APOLAN Awards. The awards recognize member companies that have embraced the Association’s mission to educate, advocate and promote POL. Honorees were recognized at the APOLAN annual member meeting awards ceremony on Feb. 23.

“The APOLAN Member Awards is the only awards program of its kind to recognize the industry’s innovators, educators and promoters that are going above and beyond in driving the adoption of POL,” Rich Labonski, Enterprise Sales Executive at DZS and newly appointed APOLAN Chairman. “The contributions of the companies being honored this year have been paramount in enabling POLs continued growth, making it clear that the industry is embracing POL as the most viable solution to their in-building networking challenges.”

Here are the 2020 APOLAN Award Winners in the Education, Innovation and Promotion categories.

THE INNOVATION AWARD: Recognizes APOLAN member companies that have promoted innovative POL advancements to meet industry technical challenges.

  • Innovation Platinum Winner: Qypsys, with supporting member company Corning, for the “Converged Optical LAN/Small Cell Network”  

Qypsys deployed an Optical LAN for the primary mission of providing connectivity to small cells for cellular coverage. At the same time, it also provided the connectivity for 802.11 and IoT end points. The fiber-based LAN ensures reliable connectivity to the radios supporting the bands needed today, while enabling the future introduction of additional radios to support 5G and IoT strategies without multiple layers. This innovation represents a new avenue for adoption of Optical LAN and further aligns APOLAN’s OEMs for electronics, power and fiber. It also represents one of the first such deployments and is the basis of design for customer strategy to introduce this solution to clients on a massive scale.

  • Innovation Gold Winner: ITConnect, with supporting member company Alpha, an EnerSys Company, for “Using Remote DC Power to Enable a LAN Upgrade at Historical Holy Names University”

Holy Names University, located in North Oakland, Calif., experienced many network and routing issues with new technologies being integrated. With an old category 5 infrastructure, HD video cameras, new wireless technology and added devices on campus, made network connection an ongoing complaint. A new POL network was the perfect resolution. With single mode fiber, the POL network went in right along the existing copper, with the two parallel networks functioning simultaneously. With this form of installation, ITConnect was able to transition all devices – including, IP phones, computers, IP cameras, IPTV, wireless and building systems - with no disruption to the end user.

THE PROMOTION AWARD Recognizes APOLAN member companies that have implemented promotion initiatives to contribute to the awareness of POL and its benefits.

  • Promotion Platinum Winner: AECOM for “Passive Optical LAN Shines in Cost Comparison”

AECOM’s contribution to the APOLAN Passive Optical LAN Cost Comparison study, quantifies the significant savings that can be realized by installing a POL instead of a traditional network, and in what areas of the network costs savings are seen. For example, the elimination of costly IDFs is one of many capex-reducing elements that users enjoy when they switch to POL. This and many other aspects are highlighted in the recently released cost comparison produced by the Association for Passive Optical LAN.

  • Promotion Gold Winner: Nokia, with supporting member company Corning, for its “Can FTTH infrastructure become a LAN infrastructure for Business Customers”

Nokia hosted the number one event for fiber in Europe at the FTTH Council Europe Virtual Conference. The webinar showcased how POL, based on Passive Optical Networks (PON), is a new use-of-concept and equipment developed for FTTH PON access, characterized by a passive optical infrastructure. Addressing POL’s performance, optical fiber guarantees a seamless evolution towards future high bandwidth consuming services and long-life expectancy. The event supported the promotion and advocation of POL with real use cases that showcase the cost-effective, future-proof and service convergence benefits of POL solutions.

THE APOLAN EDUCATION AWARD: Recognizes APOLAN member companies that have implemented learning initiatives to contribute to the education of POL and its benefits.

Alpha, an EnerSys Company played an important role in two POL webinars, providing the pros and cons of different powering architectures. The sessions increased the understanding of various power options, enabling integrators and end users to select the best fit for their specific application. The webinars also shared an overview of the codes and standards as they pertain to each technology. This includes providing guidance for safe installations, which in turn elevates the image of the POL industry. This webinar had a large viewership and established the precedent for providing vendor agnostic education to the APOLAN industry.

  • Education Gold Winner: AECOM, with supporting member company Corning, for “Passive Optical LAN 102: Beyond the Basics Webinar”

The first of its kinds to build on the fundamentals of POL, this AECOM and Corning webinar helps users learn how to take their network “Beyond the Basics”. The webinar covered topics including, managing and planning a converged fiber, power infrastructure best practices, options for applications at the edge, explore overlaying cellular solutions and how A/V can be easily incorporated. The webinar helps ease the minds of new users that are considering the use of POL. Providing solutions to the most common concerns lets end users know that the technology is mature and able to handle the demands of a typical LAN.

APOLAN membership is comprised of heavyweight industry leaders that are shaping the future of network connectivity. For more information about the Member Awards, APOLAN, POL solutions and membership opportunities visit

About The Association for Passive Optical LAN (APOLAN)
The Association for Passive Optical LAN is a non-profit organization that is driving adoption and educating the market about the technical and economic advantages of passive optical LAN technology. Through its membership, which is comprised of manufacturers, distributors, integrators and consulting companies actively involved in the marketplace, the Association hopes to help designers, engineers, architects, building owners, CIOs and IT departments implement and successfully use passive optical LAN. For more information, visit