Fiber-To-The-Home enters a critical period in Europe. A "go/no go" kind of game, where CE might lose a lot : its economic wealth for the decades to come against other regions such as North America and Asia.
Read FTTH Council Sets Euro Target by Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor at Light Reading.
The revamped FTTH Council Europe expects 8 million homes to be hooked up to fiber-to-the-home connections by the end of 2012, says the industry body's new president. (See FTTH Council Adds New Prez.)
Joeri Van Bogaert, sales director for German fiber optics equipment vendor Leoni NBG Fiber Optics, took over as president of the Council in April, since when he has been restructuring and refocusing the pressure group, which aims to influence regulators, policy makers, financiers, and network operators that FTTH deployments are a positive influence on individuals and businesses.
Bogaert says that at the end of 2006, the European Union's 27 member states, plus Switzerland, Norway, and Iceland, had about 820,000 FTTH connections. The current target is to increase that ten-fold, to more than 8 million, by the end of 2012. "That's probably more realistic than ambitious," Bogaert concedes, adding that current growth indicators mean "we may need to revisit that forecast at the end of this year."
He says that, of that 8 million, about 6 million to 6.5 million connections are expected to come from buildouts by utility firms, city developments (especially Amsterdam and Vienna), and other communities, with the remainder from carriers such as France Telecom SA (NYSE: FTE - message board). (See FT Fleshes Out FTTH , Neuf Unit Wins FTTH Deal, and Amsterdam Fires Up Muni Broadband.)