AT&T (NYSE: T) says it will continue to expand its fiber-optic network to deliver improved technology and communications services to businesses of varying sizes.With more than 1.1 million route miles of fiber worldwide, AT&T has over 8 million business customer locations nationwide that are either on or within 1,000 feet of its fiber.
The 8 million customer estimation includes approximately 400,000 U.S. business buildings that are lit with AT&T Fiber, encompassing over 1.8 million business customer locations.
"We now have 1.8 million business customer locations connected with fiber," confirmed John Stephens, AT&T CFO, during the fourth-quarter earnings call, according to a Seeking Alpha transcript. "That means more sales opportunities for the team. We also expect increased business activity following the passage of tax reform."
Companies' use of data, applications, and services in the cloud continue to grow, and along with it, demand for high-speed, ever-present connectivity, says AT&T. The service provider plans to meet this demand by delivering high-speed connectivity to large and small business customers through its fiber-optic network in key metros throughout the nation.
AT&T says that its fiber network offers the bandwidth required to support video conferencing, collaboration, cloud services, and other data-intensive services. AT&T Business Fiber offers internet service with speeds of up to 1 Gbps.
In January, AT&T asserted that its recent focus on 5G does not mean it will neglect other technologies (see "AT&T plans to expand reach of 5G, AT&T Fiber, and G.fast"). AT&T said it plans to launch mobile 5G service in a dozen markets by late 2018, alongside its plans to expand the reach of AT&T Fiber for consumers and businesses, and of G.fast.
"It all starts with fiber. Fiber accelerates everything that businesses need to digitally transform. Without fiber, innovative solutions like highly secure networking, cloud computing, and 5G wouldn't be possible," said Mo Katibeh, AT&T Business chief marketing officer. "As we continue to expand our national fiber network, we want businesses to take full advantage of our fiber highway that is essentially right to their doorstep."
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