Don't hold breath for fibre: Telstra

The transition to an all-fibre network to replace Telstra's ageing copper asset is unlikely to take place for another two decades or so, with near-term deployment of fibre restricted to new estates and "very limited" replacement of copper, a senior executive said today.

The transition to an all-fibre network to replace Telstra's ageing copper asset is unlikely to take place for another two decades or so, with near-term deployment of fibre restricted to new estates and "very limited" replacement of copper, a senior executive said today.

Telstra group managing director Ted Pretty told an analyst briefing this morning in Sydney that "aggressive industry forecasts" for Australia suggest by 2020, around 6 million households would be served by Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) and 2 million still serviced by copper.

"The takeout is that fibre is becoming cost-competitive with copper and we should be seeing much more of it beginning in the months ahead -- but the transition to all fibre will occur over the next 15-20 years, not in the short term," Pretty said.

He said the total FTTP capital expenditure for network equipment -- including cable -- per home passed was expected to come down from 1.5 times the cost of copper to about equal within the next 18-24 months.

"The cost to support FTTP will be less than the cost to support traditional copper-based network(s)," Pretty said. "In addition to savings on the initial activation, we estimate there will be annual savings from a more resilient and flexible FTTP network.

"Currently customers use a variety of access infrastructures to receive telephony, broadband data and pay television services," Pretty said. "FTTP will offer an equivalent to these existing products and services via one dual-fibre access technology with ongoing cost savings in operations and maintenance.

"Also, longer term, FTTP technology will provide a growth path to higher bandwidth Internet and entertainment services".

Telstra has set aside AU$34 million to extend its FTTP trials to new estates.

Newsletters

You have been successfully signed up. To sign up for more newsletters or to manage your account, visit the Newsletter Subscription Center.
See All
See All