FTTH Conference: Come on Baby Light my Fiber
FTTH Council Europe celebrated its 10th anniversary this year, hosting its Annual Conference in London. And, since FTTH is not getting as much attention in the UK as elsewhere in Europe, this was certainly a well‑covered, if not hot topic at the event. Indeed, when compared to Lithuania and Andorra, which already have 100% availability of fiber access networks, the UK is struggling to get in the game with 0.06% penetration of FTTH networks, according to IDATE in an article from Lightwave. Germany is not doing much better, with only 0.51%. But, according to the FTTH Council Europe, the number of FTTH home connections is expected to double in Europe over the next five years, so we have a feeling this topic will be causing a buzz for quite some time.
Of course, many of the discussions at the event evolved around the need for fiber deployments, as viewed from different perspectives. But really, one of the best sessions we attended was led by a preteen guest speaker who argued that because children are now Internet-dependent, a good connection is an essential tool in their daily lives.
As we all know, pretty much everyone is now connected to the Internet, making it the most important invention of all time, according to keynote speaker Alexander Bard. He didn’t neglect to mention that he penned the expression “fiber-to-everywhere,” and even qualified the Internet as the Third Industrial Revolution. We all enjoyed this very interesting and colorful session.
Many other great topics were covered during the event. Without going into too much detail, here’s a brief overview of the highlights:
- The number of devices connected to the Internet is now higher than the number of inhabitants on Earth.
- FTTH is changing the face of traditional healthcare: In the near future, physical visits to the doctor’s office for a prescription, renewal or medical expertise will be a thing of the past. E-health will provide access to healthcare via the Internet.
- Many work sectors, and in particular the film, gaming and entertainment industry, will be significantly impacted as fiber makes its way to desktop, television and even chipsets, with the result being increased productivity and innovation!
- Fiber deployments will help deliver higher living standards and boost the economy by facilitating the arrival of smart homes, smart cities, and smart grids. People will be able to control their homes remotely (alarm systems, room temperature, lighting, etc.), which will minimize transportation costs and lost time, in addition to reducing energy consumption.
- Over 85% of all wireless traffic depends on fixed infrastructure: business for DAS, FTTA, RRH, small cells and HetNet; a message that was relayed during “The Need for Fiber and Access Network” session.
On the EXFO side, this was a great event. Our booth attracted many UK visitors, in addition to a lot of traffic from France, Scandinavian countries, Eastern European countries, Latin America and the Middle East. In particular, our Node iOLM centralized fiber monitoring and testing solution generated a lot of interest. We also showcased our brand new FTTH PON guide in its new iPad format. On that note, congratulations are in order for James Swindells, who won an iPad mini by participating in our contest at the event.
For a sneak preview of the interactive version of our FTTH PON Guide, watch EXFO’s Martin Warne in an interview at the event.
Overall, the 2013 FTTH Conference was a highly successful event. We will most definitely be participating in next year’s edition, so see you there in Stockholm!