South Africa has recently seen fast-paced developments in the implementation of Fiber to the x (FTTX), which includes fibre to the business (FTTB) and fibre to the home (FTTH).
FTTX broadband network architecture, which makes use of optical fibre, offers unsurpassed Internet speeds and a richer broadband experience. It adds tremendous value to communities, in particular to gated residential communities and security estates, the construction of which is rapidly escalating in South Africa.
“Fibre technology can touch every community and there are tremendous opportunities in the delivery of FTTX solutions in South Africa,” says Bradley Hemphill, Managing Director of EES Live (Pty) Ltd. EES Live is a professional services company specialising in networks, data centres, security and building management systems.
Internet is becoming the backbone of most modern communications. As an ever-increasing number of “added-value” services, such as business, social, security, health, education and government services, are offered online, it becomes more and more important to ensure that a community considers the benefits of rapid, efficient household broadband.
The opportunity that exists, according to the Association of Residential Communities (ARC), is that there are approximately 3500 communities in South Africa in which about five million people live, and that in the region of R12 billon is being spent by Homeowner Associations (HOA) annually.
“After security concerns have been met, which in gated communities is a given and in place from day one, the owner is looking for more value for his investment” says Hemphill. “Communities in which FTTX have been installed become increasingly sought after and the value of property in these connected communities increases. According to statistics released by FTTH America, a house which has FTTH increases in value by 7%.
“Fibre creates smart homes, for example enabling a movie to be downloaded in a matter of seconds, enabling the home to be managed remotely and facilitating video surveillance”, Hemphill states.
Open access networks
“Fibre needs to exist within an Open Access Network (OAN)”, Hemphill contends. “In an OAN business model the Ethernet Access Provider (EAP) does not compete with Internet Service Providers (ISP) on the network.
“The OAN allows multiple ISPs to compete and utilize the same network, in so doing eradicating the monopoly of the incumbent operator. It allows subscribers (home owners) to choose from these ISPs and it maximises freedom of choice, thereby delivering more value and benefits from these choices.” Hemphill concludes.
EES Live is using its experience to design the Layer 1 networks and project manage the implementation for various EAPs.