IDATE: FTTH market growing in Europe and Middle East

FEBRUARY 24, 2010 -- On the eve of the FTTH Council Europe’s FTTH event in Lisbon, Portugal, market analysis and consulting firm IDATE has released its latest analysis of the FTTH market in Europe and the Middle East.

FEBRUARY 24, 2010 -- On the eve of the FTTH Council Europe’s FTTH event in Lisbon, Portugal, market analysis and consulting firm IDATE has released its latest analysis of the FTTH market in Europe and the Middle East.

IDATE says that FTTH subscribers and homes/buildings passed grew 19% and 29%, respectively, between June and December 2009 in Europe. In the EU36 (including Russia), there were nearly 3.5 million FTTH/B subscribers and more than 25 million homes/buildings passed.

Because of its specific demographic characteristics, Russia is the “heaviest” country in terms of subscribers and homes/buildings passed even though the FTTH/B market is still in its infancy in the country, IDATE asserts. IDATE called the potential of the Russian market “huge” -- and potentially large enough to convince new players to get involved in FTTH/B deployments in the near future.

In the Middle East (where IDATE covers 14 countries), the United Arab Emirates (UAE) represent the main FTTH/B market, totaling more than 1 million homes/buildings passed and nearly 63,000 subscribers (see "Alcatel-Lucent to accelerate deployment of Etisalat's UAE FTTH network" for an example). In other countries, FTTH/B deployments are very limited, IDATE says; municipalities, which initiated most of the FTTH/B projects in Europe, do not seem to get highly involved in deployments in this region so far. In fact IDATE predicts rollouts in the Middle East will more probably be initiated by incumbents and private players. Among this last category, real estate owners will rapidly find a high interest in fiber as value-added for their new housing programs, IDATE predicts.

Yet even with new deployments in Eastern and Southern Europe, more mature countries still dominate the global European FTTH/B market, IDATE asserts. In countries such as Sweden, rollouts continue, if on a smaller scale. The main issue in the mature markets is to convince end users to subscribe to services based on FTTH/B networks. At end 2009, 18 European countries are in the FTTH Council’s Global Ranking, which is the proof that commercial effort is ongoing, but still has to be enhanced, IDATE says.

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