A report from the FTTH Council Europe has confirmed the steady growth of fibre-optic network roll-out across the region

Following its annual conference in Vienna, the FTTH Council Europe has announced that Europe now has 200 million homes able to receive fibre-to-the-home/building (FTTH/B) services, with this number expected to increase by over 50% in the next five years.


Based on the latest data from Idate for the council, nearly 198.4 million homes were passed by FTTH or FTTB as of September 2021, compared to the 176.3 million in September 2020.
This expansion regarding homes passed was led by France (up 4.3 million), the UK (up 3.4 million), Germany (up 2.4 million), and Italy (up 1.5 million). That these countries are leaders should come as little surprise, with all of them lagging behind European leaders like Spain due to their previously heavy reliance on copper infrastructure.
In fact, France recorded a record high in both fixed and mobile investments in 2021, reaching €14.9 billion, over a 10% increase over the previous year.
When it comes to uptake of fibre services, the data confirmed that 48.5% of households able to receive FTTH/B services subscribed to the services, an increase of 3.6% year-on-year. In the 27 EU countries plus the UK, take-up was at 52.4%, increasing steadily to 5.6% per annum.
According to the report, alternative operators comprised most of the FTTH/B coverage (57%), with incumbent operators accounting for 39% and municipalities/utilities the final 4%. Researchers note that overall, there is a steady growth in fibre deployment, extending to both rural and urban areas
“The data clearly shows that we are achieving a great progress in terms of fibre roll-out, thus contributing to the twin digital and green transition, which will reshape how Europeans work, live and do business,” said Vincent Garnier, director general of the FTTH Council Europe. “The full-fibre connectivity will be key to achieve the EU’s ambitious climate and sustainability targets. Moreover, the Covid-19 pandemic led to more data traffic and more demand, clearly demonstrating the necessity to intensify FTTH deployment and adoption.”
Idate also announced updated five-year forecast, expecting to see an overall increase of 61%fibre-optic penetration in the EU39 by 2027.

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