Fibre to the Home (FTTH) continues to make a dramatic contribution to the French broadband market with a 67% increase year-on-year.
Regulator ARCEP says that of December 31, 2014 there were 3.1 million superfast broadband subscriptions, an annual increase of over 50%. 935,000 of these were FTTH connections, representing a 67% increase on 2014. Moreover, the increase in superfast broadband has been mirrored by the first-ever reduction in ‘classic’ broadband lines.
The number of subscriptions to access lines providing a connection speed of between 30 and 100 Mbps increased by 530,000 over the previous year, to reach 1.275 million (+72%). These superfast broadband subscriptions also include VDSL2 plans, all of which deliver speeds equal to or above 30 Mbps/s, which ISPs have been marketing since 1 October 2013.
The number of broadband subscriptions – ie to a connection with a maximum advertised download speed of less than 30 Mbps – stood at 22.9 million at the end of Q4, which is 290,000 less than in the previous quarter, but stable compared to Q4 2013.
ARCEP points out that operators are also accelerating the rollout of FTTH. As at December 31, 2014, 4.1 million homes were in an area where they could subscribe to FTTH, some 37% more than in 2013.
Operators are also upgrading existing co-axial networks; by the end of Q4 2014, around 8.7 million homes had been equipped for FttLA and HFC access, delivering speeds equal to or above 30 Mbps. 6.1 million of these connections are capable of supplying a throughput of 100 Mbps or more, which is 17% more than in Q4 2013.