FTTH Socio-economic Impacts Revealed

Created February 16, 2018
Ronan Kelly, President of the FTTH Council EuropeNews and Business

A new study carried out by WIK Consult for the FTTH Council Europe suggests that, for the majority of FTTH users, fibre is about higher speed and better value for money. The study also indicates that an overwhelming majority of non-FTTH users want fibre, and identifies a number of benefits in areas such as the environment and agriculture.A new study carried out by WIK Consult for the FTTH Council Europe suggests that, for the majority of FTTH users, fibre is about higher speed and better value for money The study also indicates that an overwhelming majority of non-FTTH users want fibre, and identifies a number of benefits in areas such as the environment and agriculture.

The study analysed the socio-economic benefits of FTTH in two countries, Sweden and The Netherlands. It used case-studies and a representative survey of 1,018 Swedish consumers.

Responses to the survey lead to the conclusion that for the majority of FTTH users fibre is about higher speed and better value for money. Among the findings were:
• 87% of the FTTH subscribers mention high bandwidth as the primary reason for purchasing a FTTH connection

• 62% are satisfied about the higher range of services they get with FTTH

• 51% are of the view that fibre provides for a better value for money

• The degree of satisfaction of FTTH end-users is substantially higher than recorded for any other Internet access technology in Sweden. It reaches 83% whereas other technologies such as DSL or cable are respectively reported at 52% and 72%

• 94% of non-FTTH users would consider subscribing to FTTH if it was made available in their area.

The study also looked at the impact of fibre on the economy and society leading to the following conclusions:
• In Europe, FTTH/B infrastructure is proven to have a positive impact on the environment, with 88%  less greenhouse gas emissions per Gigabit compared to other access technologies

• In France, 4.8% more start-ups were created in municipalities equipped with ultrafast broadband compared to the ones with slower access

• Fibre is playing a role in tackling the demographic challenge in Nuenen (The Netherlands), where the second case study was conducted. The development of fibre allowed the use of new services like “domotica” and home automation helping elderly citizens connected by the FTTH network in the area

• Agriculture is one of the sectors where the degree of digitisation is accelerating the use of smart farming, allowing the monitoring and reporting of manure and fine dust emissions and efficiency gains in the day-to-day business.

“Given that Scandinavian and Baltic countries are leading the way on FTTH/B penetration, it was particularly interesting to study the perspective of end-users in Sweden. The migration process – from another technology to FTTH – started in Sweden in 2007 and is already quite advanced, and the shares of subscriptions that rely on other technologies such as DSL and cable have decreased over the same period,” notes Ronan Kelly, President of the FTTH Council Europe. “This transition provided a large quantity of data to analyse and the opinion of the end-users and their degree of satisfaction were therefore crucial in understanding what triggers end-users to choose fibre and how they use fibre connectivity.”

http://www.ftthcouncil.eu/home

John Williamson

This article was written
by John Williamson

John Williamson is a freelance telecommunications, IT and military communications journalist. He has also written for national and international media, and been a telecoms advisor to the World Bank.