Peter Wentworth

Own your own last-mile fibre

SiloBreaker reports on an interesting fibre-optic deployment in Ottawa where 400 homeowners are being allowed to buy their own last-mile fibre.

The idea that every home or business could come with a “tail” back to a common multiprovider service point could bring huge advantages: providers could service a suburb relatively cheaply, bringing new levels of competition, and much less fuss around issues like network neutrality, unbundling of the local loop, and lock-in to a service provider.

The source (incorrectly, I thought) indicates that this is the first such deployment. But the Utopia Community Metronet network in Utah already provides 100Mb and gigabit service to the home on fibre owned by the homeowners. Multiple service providers can provide internet and high-definition IPTV services through the infrastructure.

Interestingly, the new announcement from Ottawa puts the one-off cost of buying your own fibre run at about $2 700 per homeowner, possibly dropping depending on penetration into the neighbourhood. Many businesses in South Africa pay much more than that per month for a lot less bandwidth!

One Response to “Own your own last-mile fibre”

  1. Hi Peter,
    I think this is a powerful idea for South Africa. It is worth hearing Bill St. Arnaud talk about FTTH. He is quite a maverick and suggests using beer to exploit serendipity with companies that are already digging up streets. A few cases of beer to the men digging the ditches can lead to a lot of inexpensive fibre deployment. :-) Now if we only had a less litigiously oriented incumbent and a policy and regulatory framework that encouraged competition.

    August 8, 2008 at 2:04 pm

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