What is Fiber to the Home, or FTTH?
Fiber to the home (FTTH) is an access network architecture that allows to deploy xPON technology to provide the highest possible speeds of Internet access downstream (from the network to the end user) as well as upstream (from the user to the network) over optical fiber from the operator’s switching equipment to an individual home. Fiber reaches directly the home of the end user.
FTTH – xPON replaces the legacy infrastructure based on copper (xDSL) and coaxial/fiber (HFC) because of:
At UFINET we are aware of technological change and the speed with which the telecommunications market evolves. Therefore, we offer programmed resources to equipment changes and specialized personnel to provide on-site support by providing installation or maintenance of any device, guaranteeing:
- The ability to provide a much higher two-way transmission speeds, which delivers a multitude of digital information — telephone, video, data, etc. — more efficiently. Fiber has virtually unlimited capacity with bandwidth upgrades just limited by the state-of-the-art of active equipment.
- Cost reduction of FTTH components and equipment (fiber, splicing boxes, splitters, drop, OLT, ONTs, etc.) over the last years
- Maintenance costs are also reduced as there is no active equipment in the field requiring service and optical components are extremely reliable. Network operation and maintenance is simpler using full automation and software control, requiring fewer staff.
- Lifespan of the fiber optic cable (30+ years).
- Not affection by electromagnetic interference, which is a source of downtime in copper networks.
- Less electricity consumption (compared with HFC or xDSL technologies).
How does UFINET provide FTTH?
Fiber to the Home has become another business line addressed by UFINET and offered to all operators in Latin America under an open and neutral network model, leveraging its startling far-reaching and capillary network deployed over the last 22 years, network management, expertise and quality of service provided.
Key drivers that underpin our FTTH solutions for our customers:
- Passive networks
- Active networks -bitstream-
- Massive end-to-end deployments
- Management, operation and maintenance
- Backhaul and IP Transit
- Provisioning and operating management system integration
Active and Passive FTTH Networks
Passive model (dedicated xODN service for operators)
UFINET provides managed ODN service, though dedicated PON trees, to connect end users in a determined coverage area, which covers a determined number of households. UFINET’s customer is the responsible to light the network by the implementation of the active network (OLTs in the Central Office and ONT in end user’s home).
Active model (bitstream)
UFINET provides a bitstream (capacity) supported by the GPON FTTH Network, from the Central Office (or head end) to the end user’s home. UFINET’s customer receives a complete active model. UFINET owns the passive and active infrastructure and operates the active network.
If you are an operator with expectations to reach high penetrations, quite often the passive model is the best choice for your business, in terms of costs, operation and scalability. Otherwise, the active model provides the perfect alternative to own construction and managing network.
The end user’ home may be an SFU (Single Family Unit) or an MDU (multiple dwelling unit). In any case, UFINET provides the last mile (drop, and ONT if any) in both solutions to reach the end user’s home. In this manner, our customers get benefit of a real end-to-end FTTH service.
- Multi-operator network: through independent passive networks
- High Efficiency: optimized use of splitters for GPON customers even with low customer penetration (splitters on demand) which entails in turn a highly efficient OLT port usage
- Passive model (ODN Network owned and provided by Ufinet, and OLT and ONT owned by operators) or Active model (ODN Network, OLT and ONT owned and provided by UFINET)
Although the primary and secondary cables are designed under a point-to-multipoint topology (1:64 splitting ratio), each end user has a logical point-to-point connection. The end users send and receives only the data intended for them, whether UFINET’s customer embraces Active model or Passive model providing its OLT and ONTs.
FTTH Network components and related terms:
- Central Office or Point of Presence is the place where the primary fiber optic lines terminate and allows interconnecting outgoing trunks to the homes passed in the Coverage Area (typically between 30,000 and 50,000 Homes Passed).
- Coverage Area means the area which covers the Homes Passed.
- Drop is the cabling from the FAT and the indoor optical outlet installed somewhere in the household.
- FAT is the acronym for Fiber Access Terminal and means the border element of the Ufinet´s ODN, where drop to the end user’ home is connected to.
- FTTH Network refers to the set of active and passive elements that make up the Fiber To The Home project (own and third-party infrastructure, pipes, fiber optic cables, nodes, junction boxes, splitters, optical distributors, OLTs and ONTs), as well as any system and operating resources necessary for the proper operation and management.
- GPON is the acronym for Gigabit Passive Optical Network and shall mean the gigabit-capable passive optical access network described in Recommendation ITU-T G.984.
- Home Connected or HC refers to the Home Passed where the end user, served by UFINET’s customer, has requested a telecommunications service over the FTTH Network, and where UFINET has successfully enabled fiber-optic access to such network (Passive model), and the relevant capacity service to the end user’s home (Active model).
- Home Passed or HP means the residential unit that is within the Coverage Area capable of connecting to the UFINET’s FTTH Network for service provision.
- ODN is the acronym for Optical Distribution Network and means the set of elements that connect the central active equipment (OLT) with the end user’s home equipment (ONT), that is, all the fibers, splices, connectors, splitters, ODF, and FAT that make up the passive network.
- OLT is the acronym for Optical Line Terminal and means the xPON technology-based active equipment located in the Central Office.
- ONT is the acronym for Optical Network Terminal and means the xPON technology-based active equipment located in the user’s home that has the interfaces to the devices which use the service. ONT is the boundary for service delivery by UFINET in Active model.
- PFP is the acronym for Primary Flexibility Point.
- Penetration means the ratio between total Homes Connected and total Homes Passed depending on a FTTH Network’s Central Office.
- SFP is the acronym for Secondary Flexibility Point.
- Splitter is the passive branching element or optical division.
- Service has the following mean depending on the FTTH solution provided:
- Active model: capacity or also called ‘bitstream’ service supported on a fiber optic link through the UFINET’s GPON FTTH Network that is enabled from a port of the OLT in the CO to the ONT in the end user’s home, with their relevant management, operation and maintenance. Through such Service, UFINET’s customer can send its traffic and contents to end users.
- Passive model: fiber optic link through the UFINET’s xPON FTTH Network that is enabled from a position of the optical distributions fiber (ODF) in the CO to a specific position of the fiber access terminal (FAT) closest to the end user’s home (or directly to the optical outlet in the household, when Drop is included in UFINET’s service), with their relevant management, operation and maintenance. Through such Service, UFINET’s customer can send its traffic and contents to its end users.
- Wholesale Network means the architecture used by UFINET for the FTTH Network, which is planned as a multi-operator network, without affecting or reducing the possibilities of coverage for those who support their services on it. UFINET sizes the necessary network elements (cables, ODF, PFP, SFP, FAT, OLT, etc.) as shared among its customer.
- xPON means X Version of Passive Optical Network, referring to optical technology version installed by UFINET’s customer over a Passive model.
To access FTTH network resources, UFINET’s customer issues a resource allocation request to UFINET regarding its client (end user). In response to this request, UFINET makes the necessary assignments in the network to allocate these resources and deliver the requested service to its customer.
UFINET adapts its provisioning system to generate the least possible impact on the operator’s processes and systems by exposing open APIs to process requests.
UFINET performs the proactive and corrective maintenance of the FTTH network in order to maintain the highest standards and service levels in access networks of this type.
Modality of contracting
UFINET offers full flexibility to be adapted with its customers’ financial needs, either on a CAPEX or OPEX basis.
- IRU. Financial model based on an ‘Indefeasible Right of Use’, where the customer acquires a right to receive a dedicated passive network managed service or capacity network (in Active model) to address a determined number of households in a Coverage Area for a long term. This model is oriented for those customers who CAPEX model works better than OPEX’s.
- Lease. UFINET’s customer pays along the time an amount of money for the service received: passive or active service to address a determined number of households in a Coverage Area. This model is oriented for those customers who OPEX model works better than CAPEX’s.
How will the billing for the service work?
As stated before, the main concern of UFINET is to ease its customer may choose the best service model, from the standpoint of both financial solution and billing parameter.
According to this customer orientation, UFINET tailors FTTH offers to each customer’s needs upon several parameters and business key drivers:
- Price per home passed for a Coverage Area
- Price per home connected for a Coverage Area
- Price set out depending on the penetration. The more penetration achieved, the better prices applied.
- Special conditions if take-or-pay is taken
- Backhaul and/or IP Transit as add-on service
- Term of the contract
Besides many projects deployed and others under construction in several Latin American countries based on the traditional financial model per home passed, as a breaking and disruptive model, UFINET has recently launched massive FTTH deployments in Bogota, Santiago, Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo based on home connected in a Lease model without commitment.
FTTH – Colombia
Proyecto Bogotá (proyecto en curso)
1ª fase lanzada: 50.000 HP
Smart City Serena Del Mar, Cartagena
Alcance previsto: +30,000 HHP (proyecto en curso)
FTTH en Argentina
Proyecto Florencia Varela – Buenos Aires (en curso)
FTTH – Brasil
Proyecto Osasco – Sao Paulo (proyecto en curso)
50.000 HP – 1ª fase lanzada: 10.000 HP
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