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PPC blog

What applications will fill up gigabit Fiber to the Home Connections?

Posted by Joe Byrne

The introduction in the United States of gigabit Fiber to the Home (FTTH) connectivity made me wonder what this extra speed could be used for. After all, many people survive perfectly happily with 30 Mbps (or smaller) connections and I recently downgraded my own home service from 120 Mbps to 60 Mbps without really seeing any difference in performance.

So how would I use the 17x increase in capacity that is available from a 1 gigabit connection? Is it just an expensive white elephant that no-one will actually need? The short answer is that it will be required – connection speeds that are adequate now will quickly become a bottleneck if they cannot cope with future needs.

Consequently I’ve got my crystal ball out and come up with five applications that I think will drive the need for this fiber connection speed – do add your own in the comments section.

Topics: Fiber to the home, Market trends

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Is FTTC enough for the UK’s future superfast broadband needs?

Posted by Joe Byrne

Currently operators in countries around the world are investing heavily in rolling out fiber broadband to subscribers, either directly with Fiber to the Home (FTTH) or through halfway houses such as Fiber to the Cabinet (FTTC), as in the UK. This is increasing subscriber speeds, with the US average connection speed hitting 10.5 Mbps in Q1 2014, according to research from Akamai. Globally, the average speed is 3.9 Mbps, with South Korea heading the table with 23.6 Mbps.

Topics: Data/Statistics, Market trends

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How fiber protection is enabling next-generation automotive systems

Posted by Colin Dennison

Today’s cars are full of the latest electronic toys, making them a moving office and entertainment center all in one.

We have CD players, iPod ports, Bluetooth connections to our smartphones, Sat Nav with instant traffic feedback, front/rear view cameras, sensors, radar distance control to the car in front and voice activated controls, to name just a few. And this trend is increasing – cars are really becoming connected, mobile computing platforms that happen to have a steering wheel.

The growth of automotive electronics

However how many of us actually think about what’s there and what makes it work? We probably take it for granted, as these electronics are now an integral part of what makes our driving experience so engaging and safe. So what powers these systems and where are they located?

Topics: Market trends, vertical markets

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Half year report - the 2014 global FTTH and pushable fiber market

Posted by Tom Carpenter

As we approach the halfway mark of 2014, I thought it worthwhile to share my views on the trends we are seeing in the FTTH and pushable fiber market globally.

Firstly, the market is growing compared to 2013, a view which is backed up by several industry market research papers. For example CRU's report found that global fiber installations are up 13% for the first quarter of the year. I can’t comment on whether this is happening across the board. However what I do know is that our shipments of Miniflex fiber cable and our pushable QuikPush range are up significantly everywhere we sell globally.

Topics: Fiber to the home, Pushable Fiber, Market trends

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Russia – the current state of play with FTTX

Posted by Colin Dennison

I’ve just come back from sunny Moscow, where I attended a very busy Sviaz-Expocomm show. Officially titled the 26th International Exhibition for Telecommunications, Control Systems, IT and Communication Services, it covered the entire telecoms market, with a major focus on fiber networks. We took a stand as part of our push eastwards, building on m2fx’s existing presence in Eastern Europe, where our fiber protection technology has been deployed in more than 40% of countries in the region.

One thing that stood out was the strength and prospects for growth in the Russian market. Recent figures from the Broadband Forum put Russia ahead of France when it comes to broadband penetration, with over 25.3 million subscribers in Q4 2013. Importantly, the vast majority of FTTX connections are Fiber to the Home/Building (FTTH/B), rather than the Fiber to the Cabinet (FTTC) deployments we’re seeing across much of Western Europe. FTTH/B dominates in Russia (with around 60% of new retail subscribers), according to analysts Analysys Mason, with carriers currently migrating customers from DSL to fiber.

Topics: Fiber to the premises, Fiber to the home, Market trends

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Superfast Cornwall and the benefits of broadband

Posted by Tom Carpenter

The deployment of high speed fibre broadband has the ability to regenerate whole regions, boosting business competitiveness and creating jobs. Essentially it removes any issues of distance, so companies in more remote areas can work closely with customers or partners around the world, and allows greater productivity through better communications. Rather than losing businesses and staff to other regions, areas actually attract new investment and skills, as people move to benefit from broadband and the opportunities it brings.

The current superfast fibre rollout in Cornwall is the perfect example of what can be achieved with broadband. Funded by the EU, BT and Cornwall Council, and managed by Cornwall Development Company, Superfast Cornwall is building a brand new fibre-based superfast broadband network across the county. This will use a mix of Fibre to the Premises (FTTP), Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC) and other technologies, such as microwave, satellite and wireless to reach the 95% of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. The target completion date is the end of 2014 and the network has already passed 206,000 houses and business (82% of the county). This makes it the best connected rural region in Europe, and one of the most well-connected areas in Britain, despite its remote location in the far south west of England.

Topics: Fiber to the premises, Fiber to the home, Market trends

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Los Angeles and Fiber – bringing down deployment costs

Posted by Larry Malone


The news that Los Angeles is planning a gigabit fiber network to connect every business and home within the city limits is a further demonstration of the vital importance of high speed broadband in today’s society.

LA has announced that next month it will issue a request for proposals. The city is looking for a vendor to build the entire infrastructure themselves (without public subsidy), and then offer free internet access at between 2-5 Mbps to all, charging a fee for higher connection rates of up to 1 gigabit per second. The same fiber network would also power Wi-Fi hotspots in public areas. It would cover an area of nearly 500 square miles with 3.5 million residents.

Municipalities across the US are increasingly looking at rolling out fiber networks, as they realize the positive impact it has on the local economy, in attracting new citizens and businesses and in enabling the digital delivery of public services. As well as the success of Google Fiber’s deployments in Kansas City many urban areas have invested in either commissioning or building out their own networks. Some, like Santa Monica, have adopted a piecemeal approach, installing new fiber or conduit every time they dig up the streets, while others, such as Chattanooga in Tennessee have gone for a single, city-wide deployment. In the case of Chattanooga, EPB, the community owned electricity utility installed and runs the network, charging customers for broadband access and other services.

Topics: Market trends, Fiber innovations

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The state of broadband Britain – the global picture

Posted by Tom Carpenter

In a previous post we discussed the options consumers and businesses have when it comes to high speed broadband in the UK. In this follow on piece, we’ll take a look at the UK’s position compared to other countries around the world – and future plans in this area.

Countries around the world see the positive impact that high speed broadband can have on their economies – making companies more productive, enabling services such as telemedicine and e-learning and underpinning innovation. So there is a global drive to increase the rollout of high speed networks

Topics: Market trends, Fiber innovations

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The aggregation of marginal gains

Posted by Paul Ekpenyong

Given the overwhelming success of British Cycling, both at the Olympics and the Tour de France, businesses have naturally been looking at how such dominance is achieved. Much of the success comes down to the ‘aggregation of marginal gains’ philosophy that team principal, Sir Dave Brailsford, has instilled across both Team Sky and the Olympic programme.

Put simply, it means that rather than looking to gain one big advantage in a single area, the team looks at every process and procedure and how each one can be improved, even if by a small amount. And marginal gains stack up – in a sport like track cycling finding 5 seconds in a short race might be difficult. But finding a gain of half a second is much more likely – discover ten of these and you have your 5 seconds.

Topics: Market trends

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Vive La France

Posted by Martin Gossling


Like many countries France is moving rapidly to a fibre optic future. Latest figures from telecoms regulator ARCEP found that there were 50,000 more fibre to the home (FTTH) subscribers in Q1 2013, a nearly 70% growth since the same period in 2012.

Putting this in context France had over 24.2 million broadband subscribers at the end of March 2013, and while DSL made up 98% of connections, this is changing. 19% of homes in France have now been passed by fibre and over 1 million customers have a 100 Mbps connection, a growth of 46% since 2012.

This growth is being driven by both government and operator investment. Back in February the French Government announced that €20 billion will be spent on fiber infrastructure to increase economic growth. These funds will come a combination of the state, operators, and local government to ensure that fibre networks reach as far as possible. Reports state that 50% of the country may well have access to fibre by 2017.

Topics: Fiber to the premises, Market trends, Fiber innovations

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