Also, Nextgenaccess rides the rails to fiber, cord cutters eat bandwidth, Brits like their homes smart and more.
European Union cable revenue hit an all-time high of €24 billion ($26.4 billion), up from €23.3 billion ($25.7 billion) in 2017, according to Ovum. Vodafone is the leading operator and more than half the cable sector is held by either Vodafone or competitor Liberty. Increasing demand for broadband services continues to propel demand for the two giants' offerings, the research firm said. Revenue generating units (RGUs) for cable Internet grew in 2018 to 38 million versus 37.1 million in 2017, said Maria Rua Aguete, executive director and technology fellow of media and entertainment at IHS
during a presentation at this week's annual Cable Congress in Berlin.
Cable Revenue: Going Up
Heavyweights Vodafone and Liberty lead the pack of European Union operators increasing cable revenue between 2017 and 2018, with 2019 data expected to be crunched and analyzed soon. (Source: Informa Tech)
Full-fiber wholesaler Nextgenaccess signed a 20-year concession agreement with HS1, owner of High Speed 1, the UK's first section of high-speed rail and the accompanying stations and platforms. Nextgenaccess will deploy track-side fiber that will bring gigabit broadband within easy reach of Kent County authorities, ISPs, operators and business communities, at no cost to taxpayers. The full-fiber infrastructure will run between Stratford and the Eurotunnel in Folkestone, then connect to international fibers and mainland Europe via subsea cables in Kent.
Mediacom today said it has more than 50,000 combined residential and business customers subscribed to its 1-Gig Internet service.
ZTE reportedly won a deal to provide North Indian MSO Fastway Transmissions with its XGS-PON platform which the provider will use to facilitate a network upgrade for speeds up to 1 Gbps. That upgrade will support Fastway's deployment of FTTH and services like IPTV, OTT and voice, as well as smart-home solutions, said Fastway Transmissions Group CEO Prem Ojha in a statement.
More than 10 million people signed up for Disney+ on its first day.
Newly released research finds 12% of UK broadband households bought a smart home device in the past 12 months, according to Parks Associates. And 27% plan to buy at least one in the next 12 months, the research firm said.
Belgian cable operator VOO and Swiss service provider Sunrise both announced partnerships with Plume this week. VOO WiFi+ Powered by Plume is a service designed to improve, personalize and secure home networks, while Smart WiFi Powered by Plume features Wi-Fi optimization, custom and secure guest access, parental controls and AI security.
Serious Players, Serious Bandwidth Drain
Australian FWA provider Spark recommends users that regularly go over its new 600-gig wireless plan -- for example, households with heavy gamers or video streamers who are all online simultaneously for hours -- should consider switching to a fixed-access plan based on a fiber infrastructure.
(Photo by: Jaroslav Nymburský from Pexels)
Australian fixed-wireless access provider Spark increased its data cap to 600 GB for $85 NZ ($54 USD), wrote Chris Keal in the New Zealand Herald. But that's still not enough for Keal. He wrote:
While 600GB is a stonking amount of data, it might not quite be stonking enough for some households. In mine, where two parents stream all their TV, one teen spends a lot of time on PlayStation Online and another sets TikTok records, we usually chew threw between 800GB and 1TB (1000GB). Spark says if someone on its new Metro Unplan fixed wireless plan goes over the 600GB limit then "data restrictions will apply" -- but a spokeswoman says this process will involve nudging someone onto a fiber plan rather than throttling.
Orange unveiled Djingo, its line of smart speakers developed with Deutsche Telekom. With Djingo -- which costs €99.99 (US$110) -- people can make hands-free calls, use voice commands to control Orange TV and turn on and off light bulbs and smart bulbs if signed up to Orange's "Maison Connectée" (Connected Home) system.
For its part, Swisscom just announced the Swisscom Box, a set-top box subscribers can use to control smart-home devices through their televisions.
Facebook says it has developed a 'technology solution' that enables fiber to be deployed along electrical grid infrastructure in a very cost-effective way and has licensed that solution for free to startup NetEquity Networks.
It wasn't long ago that TV was ranked by subscribers as the most important service in the bundle provided by their communications service provider (CSP). Recent research indicates that for nearly three quarters of subscribers, broadband is now the most important service. Broadcast TV is the most important service to only 15% of North American consumers, replaced by OTT video streaming platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney+. In addition, many different competitors are moving aggressively to stake a claim in consumers' homes.
In 2020, CSPs need to fight back by transforming their business models, which are becoming more reliant on a single source of revenue: fixed broadband services.
This webinar will focus on helping CSPs transform their business models by placing a firm focus on delivering a sensational subscriber experience and by offering compelling new services that generate value for subscribers. These actions will reinforce the CSP's strategic position in the home network and position themselves for growth in the next decade.
Key topics include:
Being the first to market with WiFi 6 technology, in response to consumer purchases of new devices over the holidays;
Having the insights needed to proactively resolve issues, often before your subscribers even know that there are issues;
Providing help desk agents with the visibility they need to resolve common subscriber issues more quickly;
Delivering a mobile app, in response to consumer demands for the ability to do some things themselves, rather than having to call technical support; and
Addressing consumer concerns around device security, privacy and control with enhanced security and parental controls.
In this insightful Light Reading radio show, Kurt Raaflaub, Head of Strategic Solutions Marketing, will outline the key service provider challenges, deployment considerations, next-gen Gigabit technologies, and service models to win market share in the rapidly growing MDU market.