France is among the top tier countries in Europe for fibre deployment, with growth bolstered both by demand for high bandwidth applications and by alternative operators keen to build networks independent from Orange. Fibre infrastructure has benefited from one of Europe's most far-reaching investment programs, with leading operators such as Orange, SFR, Numéricable and Iliad concentrating on the more expensive but robust FttP rather than the fibre/VDSL2 hybrid networks favoured by most other operators in Europe. The country also benefits from a regulator which has promoted fibre effectively, and from legislation introduced since 2008 which facilitates fibre access among providers. This report assesses France's fibre, wireless and satellite broadband markets, reviewing the strategies of the principal providers and analysing the regulatory implications for municipal-funded fibre networks and the tightened regulatory regime for the maturing WiFi/WiMAX market.
Regulator consults on potential FttDP architecture; BT deploys its City Fibre Network in Paris; Free launches 1Gb/s service; Orange invests 2 billion to provide 15 million households with FttP by 2015; regulator consults on 3.5GHs spectrum for broadband use; government promotes 20 billion investment for national FttP network by 2023; FON extends WiFi arrangement with SFR; Orange signs joint network deals with Iliad, SFR and Bouygues to expand FttP in rural areas; Paris region commits to 15 million annual investment in fibre rollouts; regulator's market data to December 2013; telcos' operating data to Q1 2014; market developments to May 2014.