Operators around the world are in the midst of major roll-outs of Fiber to the Home/Fiber to the Premises (FTTH/P) networks.
Ensuring these deployments are both fast and cost-effective is critical to their success, with operators and installers looking for ways of increasing efficiency and reducing unnecessary expense during the network deployment process.
A good example of a company successfully meeting this challenge is Mobily, the second operator in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Mobily’s implementation challenge
Mobily is currently connecting around 2,000 new fiber customers a month. FTTH implementations are carried out by external contractors, using products approved by Mobily. PPC's low risk and cost effective Miniflex fiber optic cable is one of those solutions.
Detecon Al-Saudia is an approved supplier to Mobily and currently undertakes approximately 500 installations per month in the Western region which covers the city of Jeddah.
Mobily typically has a ‘last mile’ connection of between 30-100m, bringing 2-Core fiber optic G652D into the house/premises. One fiber is field spliced with an LC connector, while the second dark fiber is coiled for redundancy.
As with any new connection where existing conduits are already in use, some of these are populated with existing cable or copper infrastructure. The installer therefore has to find the optimum, most cost effective solution in order to maximise the number of deployments carried out in each working day.
As Mobily is a new provider of FTTH connections. This means that access to existing infrastructure is often not available, with the installer then responsible for deploying new microducts or finding an alternative route for the fiber cable.
The business case behind pushable fiber
As contractors are paid a standard installation fee, irrespective of the difficulty of individual deployments, Detecon Al-Saudia were facing a difficult, but not uncommon situation. They needed to find a cost effective, fast to deploy, high quality, fiber optic cable.
Detecon Al-Saudia’s teams of highly trained engineers have traditionally had to install external microducts due to the lack of existing Mobily infrastructure, adding both time and additional expense to the installation.
Where existing infrastructure was present installation teams have had great difficulty in using pushable rods to pull or push the cable into the premises, consuming valuable deployment time and reducing the number of customer installations completed per day.
By selecting Miniflex, Detecon Al-Saudia has benefited in five areas:
- Shorter deployment time, due to the cable’s lightness, strength and manageability and removal of the need to use microducts.
- Stronger fiber protection, avoiding costly and time-consuming cable breaks.
- Ease of handling, which makes the cable quicker to move and correctly position.
- Lower CAPEX, as external and internal microduct is not needed – Miniflex can be simply fixed to outside and inside walls using clips or glue.
- Removal of need for skilled technicians, as deployments can be completed by cheaper fitters due to the ease of installation of pushable fiber.
As a result, deployments are carried out in approximately half the time compared to previous methods. This means that teams can carry out 2 or 3 more installations per day, improving quality and productivity while reducing costs.