NBN Co will be rolling out fibre-to-the-distribution point (FTTdp) tech to up to potentially 700,000 premises across the country.The deployment of FTTdp, also known as fibre-to-the-curb, will cover premises previously earmarked for either fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) or hybrid fibre-coaxial (HFC) in areas served solely by the Optus HFC network.
FTTdp sees fibre potentially installed up to the driveway of an end-user premises, with it connected by a distribution point unit to existing copper lines.
“We have tested FTTdp over the last year and we’re confident we can now deploy the technology in areas where it makes better sense from a customer experience, deployment efficiency and cost perspective,” NBN Co chief network engineering officer Peter Ryan commented.
“This includes premises in the FTTN footprint that have too high a cost-per-premises (CPP) and premises served solely by the legacy Optus HFC footprint that are yet to be made ready for service.
“When we consider the advancements we’ve made in FTTdp, combined with the up-to-date learnings we have on the Optus HFC network, NBN has confirmed it will deploy FTTdp in those areas where the use of the Optus HFC network was planned, with the exception of the already launched network in Redcliffe, Queensland.”
NBN Co’s Corporate Plan 2017, released in August, revealed decreasing HFC distribution, forecasting a base case of 2.8 million (2.5-3.2 million) premises, down from 4 million in the previous year’s plan.
Fibre-to-the premises declined from the previous year’s forecast of 2.4 million to a base case of 2 million (2.0-2.5 million) premises, with FTTN (including fibre-to-the-basement and FTTdp) forecast for a base case of 6.1 million (5.1-6.5 million) premises, growing from 4.5 million premises in the previous year.
“HFC remains a highly valued part of our MTM deployment, however in balancing the requirements to convert Optus’ current network architecture and design to be NBN-ready, and the opportunity to introduce FTTdp, makes the new technology compelling in these selected areas,” Ryan stated.