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ECI Telecom Wins Crucial UK BT Next Gen Fibre Optic Broadband Contract

Posted: 06th Jul, 2010 By: MarkJ
uk fibre optic FTTP FTTC FTTH broadband cable layingIsrael-based ECI Telecom, a global provider of networking infrastructure equipment, especially GPON, GbE (Gigabit Ethernet) and other fibre optic broadband internet access solutions, has won a crucial superfast broadband ISP infrastructure building contract with BT Openreach worth £528m ($800m USD).

Under the deal ECI Telecom will help BT Openreach, which is responsible for ensuring that all rival operators have equality of access to BT's local network, bring a large scale "super-fast" Next Generation Access (NGA) broadband solution to the UK.

Rafi Maor, President and CEO of ECI Telecom, said:

"Through a future-proof network proposition, we partner with Openreach in this first-of-its-kind project to guarantee high-speed infrastructure and a viable business model. We support Openreach’s goal for cost-effective high-speed infrastructure offerings without compromising quality, security or competitiveness in such an open access environment."

Openreach will deploy ECI Telecom's Hi-FOCuS™ Multi-Service Access Node (MSAN) to help it roll-out 100Mbps FTTP and 40Mbps FTTC broadband ISP products countrywide. The solution supports multiple telecom providers through the same access fibre loop, allowing BT to deliver "equivalence" to each Communications Provider (CP) for their individual bandwidth needs.

The service includes specialised Ethernet aggregation capabilities, offering "true physical separation" of each CP's network. ECI will also provide Openreach with customer premise equipment, street cabinets, and the appropriate service integration and commissioning.

Steve Robertson, BT Openreach’s CEO, said:

"With ECI as a strategic partner for this very advanced carrier-of-carriers architecture, we are able to upgrade our infrastructure offerings to Communications Providers and guarantee the provision of equivalency to all our customers. ECI’s offerings are in line with our vision of a straightforward, more integrated and competitive network, simplifying management and supporting the optimization of our next-generation access network in an environmentally-friendly and responsible way."

Deployment of the new infrastructure will continue for 3-5 years and is set to begin later this month or during early August. The move is part of BT's £2.5bn investment to bring superfast fibre optic broadband services to 66% of UK homes and businesses by 2015. BT is currently rolling out two primary technology services, FTTC and FTTP .

FTTC delivers a fast fibre optic cable to BT's street level cabinets, while the remaining connection (between cabinets and homes) is done using VDSL2 (similar to current ADSL broadband but faster over short distances) via existing copper cable; FTTC can deliver speeds of up to 40Mbps, rising to 60Mbps in the future (uploads can reach up to 10-15Mbps).

By contrast Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP) takes that fibre optic cable directly to your home. This cuts out the interference and instability of using existing copper cable and can therefore deliver download speeds of up to 100Mbps. According to BT Openreach the FTTP product will also offer upload speeds of up to 15-30Mbps.
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