Deutsche Telekom pilots small town FTTH

Deutsche Telekom says it will launch an initiative to bring fiber to the home (FTTH) to smaller towns in Germany. The effort is part of an overall strategy to deploy 40,000 km of new fiber-optic cable this year, 10,000 km than its original goal.

Deutsche Telekom says it will launch an initiative to bring fiber to the home (FTTH) to smaller towns in Germany. The effort is part of an overall strategy to deploy 40,000 km of new fiber-optic cable this year, 10,000 km than its original goal.

The pilot will start in Bad Staffelstein in Franconia, where residents can sign up for service between December and the end of February 2018. Deutsche Telekom says it will install FTTH in the town by the end of 2018 if at least 750 customers sign up during the pre-marketing phase. Potential customers in Baden-Württemberg, Hesse, Saxony, and Thuringia will have the same sign-up opportunity early next year.

"We introduced pre-marketing in 2011 and came back to it as a great tool for building out fiber-optic infrastructure. Demand was mostly too low a few years ago, but we're hoping for a better response this time around," says Niek Jan van Damme, head of Deutsche Telekom's business operations in Germany.

The service provider says it plans to deploy the FTTH fiber via microtrenching. "This saves us time and money and minimizes the disruption for residents. More communities should opt to use this innovative technology and give people access to high-speed Internet lines," explains van Damme.

Deutsche Telekom currently operates a fiber-optic network of 455,000 km, with business parks a focus of its FTTH efforts alongside subsidized expansion activities and partnerships with competitors (see "Deutsche Telekom touts fiber-optic network investments"). Along these lines, Deutsche Telekom says it plans to deploy 60,000 km of fiber in 2018 – provided it receives the necessary regulatory incentives. "We are doing everything we can to equip Germany with vital state-of-the-art broadband infrastructure needed for digitization. But our competitors, the regulators, and the policy-makers must also do their bit," concluded van Damme.

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