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Fiber Could Reach 50% Of Homes By 2010

The report reviews a range of “fiber-deep” network upgrades planned by the major phone companies including Verizon, BellSouth and SBC. While fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) or fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) is viewed as the ultimate communications platform, other fiber-deep architectures, including fiber-to-the-curb or fiber-to-the-node, could dominate the fiber build-outs.

Among the reports other conclusions:

— Verizon holds the most aggressive plans to build fiber-based networks, although given the relatively higher costs involved in Verizon’s FTTP agenda, it seems unlikely that the company will extend the network to more than half of its service territory homes over the next five years.

— BellSouth, which has already deployed FTTC to roughly one million homes, has historically been the most aggressive telco in pursuing fiber-deep technologies.

— While SBC plans to deploy FTTP in new developments, its broadband upgrade strategy centers on FTTN architectures that employ next-generation DSL technology.

— Cable’s hybrid-fiber coax architecture is sufficient to deliver a wide range of broadband services, making it unlikely that the cable industry will move quickly to emulate the phone companies in building fiber-deep technologies.

“Phone companies currently face limited growth prospects unless they build more broadband capacity into their networks,” Cynthia Brumfield, Director of the CMA Group said. “According to our analysis, the major telcos are moving quickly to deploy a range of fiber-deep technologies, signaling a new era in broadband service delivery.”

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