One of the significant challenges facing network operators today is the high capital cost of deploying next generation broadband network to individual homes or schools. Fiber to the home only makes economic sense for a relatively small percentage of homes or schools. One solution is a novel new approach under development in several jurisdictions around the world is to bundle the cost of next generation broadband Internet with the deployment of solar panels on the owners roof or through the sale of renewable energy to the homeowner. Rather than charging customers directly for the costs of deployment of the high speed broadband network theses costs instead are amortized over several years as a small discount on the customer’s Feed in Tariff (FIT) or renewable energy bill. There are many companies such as Solar City that will fund the entire capital cost of deploying solar panels on the roofs of homes or schools, who in turn make their money from the long term sale of the power from the panels to the electrical grid. In addition there are no Energy Service Companies (ESCOs) and Green Bond Funds that will underwrite the cost of larger installations.
Thursday, April 3, 2008
OECD Workshop on Fibre Investment and Policy Challenges
[Thanks to Benoit Felten and his excellent blog FiberRevolution for this pointer -- BSA]
This is going to be an exceptional event in more ways than one. First of all, it's organised in Norway where dozens of municipal projects have sprouted all over the country. It's also happening in Stavanger, the hometown of landmark project Lyse Tele. And the speaker roster is to die for, with people from Stokab, AT&T, Amsterdam Citynet, Telefonica, France Telecom, OFCOM, ARCEP, the Japanese Ministry of Information and Communication, and many more. Check out the full program and registration details.
The aim of the Workshop is to examine fibre investment across the OECD and look for best practices across a range of investment scenarios. After 100 years, the telecommunications industry is moving away from copper to fibre-based local loop networks. Fibre networks offer higher capacities than other telecommunications transport technologies and capacity is easy to expand once the fibre is in place simply by changing electronic components at both ends. Although there is general agreement that fibre local loop networks are important there is less agreement on the best architecture for these networks. Fibre investment choices concerning large metropolitan areas will be very different than those facing operators in rural and remote areas. Therefore, the workshop will also devote attention to investment in large, medium and small communities separately. In addition, the workshop will examine a number of technological and topological options such as FTTH/FTTN and Point-to-point/PON. Finally, the workshop will look at how regulations concerning fibre are evolving in OECD countries and how to ensure that these networks help promote effective competition.