FTTH/B connections reach 29mn worldwide by end-2008

The number of fibre-to-the-building (FTTB)/fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) connections worldwide reached 29mn by the end of last year, while the number of VDSL connections reached 1.855mn, according to the latest figures from French research group IDATE.

Western Europe had 1.553mn FTTH/B customers and 777,000 VDSL customers by the end of 2008, while Central and Eastern Europe had 769,000 FTTH/B subscribers and 32,000 VDSL subscribers. Across Europe as a whole, 1.7mn or 47% of all fibre subscribers are connected via fibre-to-the-building.

"Telcos have realised that FTTB is faster to deploy because it uses cable properties, which avoids all the problems of right of way and equipment in the apartments," said Roland Montagne, Head of IDATE's Broadband/FTTx Practice. "As a result, investment is much less important to begin with. This is obviously a strong argument for operators seeking to control their spending."

Elsewhere, Japan now has nearly 40% of its fibre households connected via FTTB, while in South Korea, 6.4mn households are connected via FTTB or DOCSIS 3.0 networks.