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gfast map nov

Dark Green: Firm commitments from incumbent: BT (10M), Belgacom, Australian NBN, Swisscom,  Austria, Bezeq Israel, Chunghwa Taiwan, Telus Canada, Telekom South Africa, SK Korea, (U.S.) AT&T, Century, Frontier, Windstream, Belgium, Omantel

Mid Pink: Smaller carriers in Germany, Norway, Finland, Japan

Light Green: Incumbent likely:  France, Germany, Italy

Alphonzo SamuelsAlphonzo Samuels of Telkom South Africa has just added to his very extensive toolkit. Samuels said at BBWF he needed to offer European quality service in some of his regions and also reach vast areas that have no electricity. They have world class tech companies like Ubuntu and Dimension Data and luxury flats in the major cities. Folks like that demand and usually get the best.

Three years ago, Samuels told me he expected to use fiber home,, and vectoring in different areas. Only fiber home has been announced. They have now demonstrated G.Fast to an office complex in Pinelands and announced a wider deployment later this year. The volume should be substantial; Nokia projects SA will "soon join the top 10 companies worldwide deploying the technology." They've released no estimates of how many and when.

South Africa's income distribution is the most unequal of the 154 countries tracked by the World Bank. (Gini coefficient 63.) Their $11,000 per capita income is the second highest on the African continent except for oil producers. That's deceptive, with the majority of the population extremely poor. That's very disappointing 20 years after majority rule.

Nokia was very glad to get even a small win at Frontier, Connecticut. The company passes 14M U.S. homes, but is struggling. Alcatel and Lucent were once the U.S. leaders, but Calix and especially Adtran have been winning most contracts lately. Nokia may be winning back some market share in Germany, another good sign.

Unfortunately, Frontier is in desperate financial shape. The stock has gone down from $4.59 to $1.16 a share in the last year. They've lost money the last two years and will have another dividend cut. They really needed to drop the dividend the last few years and put the money into building a competitive network. (Easy to say in hindsight.) CTO Steve Gable has a tough problem. He needs to rebuild but the company can't bring capital spending even up to the level of depreciation.

Customers losses are enormous, both to cable and wireless. Charter's basic service is now 70 megabits down and other cablecos at least 50 meg. All four wireless companies offer "unlimited" wireless, with a soft cap. At least three will offer GiG LTE this year, probably only in limited areas.I doubt even half of Frontier's lines can support 20 megabits down. They mostly release "up to" speeds, so I have no hard data.

That said, the $1.3B market cap is very low for a company with almost $9B in sales. The price only makes sense if there is a high chance of bankruptcy in the next few years. That debt maturity schedule should continue to protect them for several years. I do not pick stocks, but note that the shares may be down so low it looks like up. Careful!

 I just added Oman and South Africa to the Gfast map. 


Nokia and Openserve successfully conduct trial to provide higher-speed broadband to more customers sooner

  • Nokia's innovative technology allows Telkom to offer fiber-like speeds to more customers, more quickly by leveraging existing copper deployments in typical Multi-Dwelling-Units, without the need for any further fiber deployments within such buildings.
  • Cape Town, South Africa -  Nokia and Telkom South Africa's wholesale division Openserve have successfully conducted a trial of technology in an office complex in Pinelands, South Africa, reaching fiber-like speeds over existing copper infrastructure as deployed in buildings. This trial is a dry-run for Openserve's commercial deployment of later this year, meaning it will soon join the top 10 companies worldwide deploying the technology, part of its drive to rapidly expand its footprint across South Africa.

    The results of the trial demonstrated an aggregate bandwidth (upstream and downstream) of 900Mb/s on short copper loops, and speeds of 500Mb/s downstream and 250Mb/s upstream on an existing copper line at a distance of 150m.

    Nokia's technology uses the last few hundred meters of existing copper located in a building to deliver ultra-broadband access to customers, and it will allow Openserve to meet demands for fiber-like broadband speeds without significantly increasing operational cost.  The built-in vectoring technology reduces cross-talk interference between copper lines, hence improving data speeds. technology is increasingly being used in areas that are cumbersome to reach with fiber, allowing operators to deploy fiber-to-the building instead of each individual apartment unit - the most expensive and time-consuming part of a fiber-to-the-home deployment. As uses existing copper lines, it reduces disruption and lowers the barriers with home owners in multiple-dwelling complexes and home owner associations for granting permissions to upgrade infrastructure on their properties.

    Openserve CEO Alphonzo Samuels said: "We completed testing Nokia's technology in our labs, and are extremely pleased with the results. provides us with a great alternative in scenarios where the length of the copper tail is 150m or less. Moreover, the business case is convincing. With, we have found a way to maximize the usage of some of our existing network infrastructure, while avoiding any disruption or possible harm to the aesthetics of the real estate. Nokia is our long-term innovation partner, and we take pride in continuing down that path, bringing more high-speed broadband services to citizens and business customers in South Africa."

    Daniel Jaeger, head of Central, East and West Africa at Nokia, said: "This is one of the first trials worldwide, and we are proud to be a part of it. Service providers are grappling with different technologies to meet the ever-growing demand for high-speed internet, and this innovative solution allows them to use existing infrastructure to cater to market demand. offers the unique combination of fiber-like speeds with very limited additional investment needed, low-hassle deployments, and faster return-on-investment.'

    Nokia is the industry leader in technology with more than 40  individual customer trials completed and 10 customers commercially deploying around the world, including Openreach Chunghwa Telecom A1 Telekom Austria Energia Communicationsand Frontier.

    Did you know?

  • - the ITU-T's G.9701 specification - was approved in December 2014 and is designed to provide gigabit broadband connection speeds over a single twisted pair cable in existing copper infrastructure.
  • Nokia's allows service providers to offe
  • Nokia and Frontier Communications deploy technology to expand gigabit ultra-broadband access across Connecticut

  • Nokia technology enables Frontier to quickly roll out fiber-like speeds to customers living in apartment buildings and deliver new IPTV and data service packages
  • Norwalk, US - Nokia and Frontier Communications will deploy technology to increase in-building broadband speeds for customers living in apartment and multi-dwelling units (MDU) across Connecticut.

    Part of a state-wide network expansion initiative, Frontier will use Nokia's technology to quickly bring fiber-like speeds to customers without having to install new, in-building fiber infrastructure. With built-in vectoring technology - which reduces cross-talk interference that typically impacts data speeds over copper networks - the Nokia solution will allow Frontier to use the last few hundred meters of existing copper located in buildings to deliver ultra-broadband access to customers.

    Nokia's technology enables Frontier to complement its extensive fiber network footprint and rapidly deploy fiber to the basement of an apartment building instead of each individual apartment unit. Leveraging Software Defined Network (SDN) capabilities and compliant with NetConf and Yang models, Nokia's solution also enables Frontier to accelerate deployments by automating the management process and simplifying provisioning models.

    Steve Gable, Frontier EVP and Chief Technology Officer said: "Nokia's field-proven solution will help Frontier quickly bring ultra-broadband access to customers by using the existing copper twisted pair wiring that is often found in apartment buildings. Without it, we'd have to drill holes and pull fiber into each apartment unit we serve, a time consuming and challenging process that can be frustrating for customers. Nokia's solution allows us to deliver new enhanced services without ever having to enter the place of residence."

    Federico Guillén, president of Nokia's Fixed Networks Business Group, said: "It's no secret that multi-technology strategies which maximize the use of both fiber and copper are effective in helping operators quickly role out new ultra-broadband services. This is particularly true in some cases like inside an apartment building, where more traditional Fiber-to-the-Home strategies can be very challenging to deploy. With the advancements that have been made in today's copper technologies, operators can now offer fiber-like speeds to enhance the way customers experience their broadband services. As market leaders in copper and fiber technologies, Nokia has the experience it takes to deliver these multi-technology broadband networks."

    Nokia is the industry leader in technology, with more than 40  individual customer trials completed and 10 customers commercially deploying around the world, including Openreach Chunghwa Telecom A1 Telekom Austria and Energia Communications .

    With new technology innovations, such as XG-FAST, Nokia remains committed to providing operators with a wide range of copper technologies essential to meet growing end-customer demand for gigabit services.


    The Site for gfast 230

    I’m still working through remarkable presentations from the Broadband Forum events. Michael Weissman, Bernd Hesse and team did a remarkable job choosing the speakers.

    Deutsche Telecom: 35b Supervectoring Delayed to 2019
    Broadcom is now over 3 years late. DT briefed German reporters after their financial call and revealed 35b was now delayed until 2019. 35b should deliver 200+ meg downloads 500-600 meters, a crucial tool for DT, which is losing share to cable. Cable now covers about 70% of Germany and is expanding. DT now only offers 50-100 megabit DSL while cable is often 400 megabits, going to a gigabit. 

    The problem is software; the hardware is shipping and supposedly will work. DT says 35b is not ready to turn on. Broadcom in 2015 said 35b was in "production" in the press release below. Alcatel in early 2016 said to expect complete systems very soon. "35g is very similar to 17a so there should be little delay."

    Broadcom's problems are leading major telcos and vendors to have a plan B, using Sckipio DT itself is planning extensive deployments in 2019, mostly in apartment buildings.

    Gigabit 100 Meters - Unless the Wires are Lousy
    Speeds are fine, "Unless there's a line problem." I've been reporting for three years that ~10% of lines have problems. In the chart by Rami Verbin of Sckipio, he finds goes ~130 meters on good lines. Poor lines have about half the reach. 

    His chart roughly matches the reports from Swisscom, Belgacom, and England for both & vectored DSL. The 10% with problems can cause the majority of the line-related complaints to support. The angry customers drive up cost.

    Rami's solution to reach the gigabit is bonding, supported on the Sckipio chips. Verbin made some additional points:

    • 4 gigabits is possible by bonding two decent 2 gigabit lines.
    • Even in a service from remote cabinets, ~25% are close enough to get a full gigabit."
    • cDTA and iDTA are practical ways to deliver much higher upstream by switching some bandwidth from downstream to upstream only when needed.
    • 35B will probably be similar but Deutsche Telecom doesn't expect to deploy until 2019.

    AT&T Wants Coax 2-5 Gigabit Very Soon.
    AT&T faces intense competition from cable, talking about 10 gigabits in both directions. (Cable will only be 1 gig down, ~100 meg up, until ~2021.) AT&T wants something to brag about as well.

    AT&T gained millions of lines of coax as part of the DirecTV deal. Alcatel and Huawei are leading the development of G.mgfast. That uses 424 MHz, full duplex, to achieve ~2.5 gigabits in both directions. The reach on telco twisted pair is only about 30 meters. On coax, those speeds can probably extend far enough to service most apartment buildings. Using 848 MHz, speeds can reach 5 gigabits. The ITU standards group has been aiming for 2019-2020 for G.mgfast, too slow for AT&T's marketers. David Titus wants a high-speed standard for coax "early in 2018." He believes that is "doable."

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