Market Research Logo

Global Broadband - Fibre is the Infrastructure Required for the Future

Broadband deployment strategies differ around the world

National fibre optic networks are the infrastructure required for our future. There simply is no other technology that can handle the capacity of data and applications that will be needed to run the cities and countries from today onwards. The infrastructure needs to be robust. It has to have enormous capacity. It needs to be secure and to be able to protect privacy. There is simply no other infrastructure technology that is up to that job.

Fibre-based infrastructure deployment requires vision and recognition of the fact that many of today’s social, economic and sustainability problems can only be solved with the assistance of ICT. This need will increase dramatically over the next 5 to 10 years as industries and whole sectors (healthcare, energy, media, retail) carry out the process of transforming themselves in order to much better address the challenges ahead.

More than 120 countries worldwide have now developed broadband policies, recognising that such infrastructure is critical to their development. None of these countries’ policies are identical; they are all different – they reflect the political, social, economical, financial and geographical conditions that prevail in each case. However all agree that a broadband infrastructure is needed to face the economic and social challenges that each country is facing - and the broadband infrastructure is perceived by all to be critical for the development of the digital economy, healthcare, education, e-government and so on.

The challenge now is to put these policies into practice and what is needed from politicians and other decision-makers is leadership. Leadership needs to be balanced against an endless process of procrastination and it is time to implement innovative solutions that enable us to advance as a society.

One can argue endlessly about what technologies should be applied and at what cost, but we believe that all signs point to Fibre-to-the-Home (FttH) networks as the best future-proof solution. One can debate about whether it is needed in 5,10 or 15 years – and again that depends on some of the differences between countries – but in the end FttH is the best final solution for all urban and many regional premises.

BuddeComm’s new report, Global Broadband – Fibre is the Infrastructure Required for the Future, provides important insights into the worldwide fixed broadband industry and includes trends, analyses, statistics and case studies. It provides insights into fibre network deployment and the growing importance of broadband to the telecoms sector. Information and statistics at a regional level is provided for North America, Europe, Middle East, Latin America, Africa and Asia Pacific, written by BuddeComm’s Senior Analysts.

Examples of key insights:

From a financial and investment point of view broadband infrastructure should be treated as utility infrastructure.

A National Broadband Network (NBN) should be based upon an open network as this makes it possible to offer the basic infrastructure on a utility basis to content and service providers. This in turn paves the way for the development of the digital economy.

It looks as though 2013 will be remembered as the year when construction of new Greenfield HFC networks came to a halt. Of course, there will still be upgrades to existing networks but the cost of fibre deployment – linked to its much lower operational cost – is now convincing cablecos and telcos alike to build new fibre networks wherever possible. This is not necessarily directly driven by customer demand, but by network costs and network efficiencies.

Telcos which do not suffer too much competition from cable companies will continue to upgrade their current DSL networks to FttN using VDSL, VDSL2 and VDSL2+ technologies wherever possible. Upgrades are done in a selective way, based on local geographic and market conditions.

There is increasing evidence (e.g. Netherlands, China, Japan, Korea, France, Israel, Switzerland, Norway and Sweden) that customers will come forward once affordable FttX services become available.

Africas international fibre bandwidth is expected to more than double again in 2014.

Bandwidth is gradually increasing in most LAC countries, governments are implementing national broadband plans, and regulators are seeking measures to promote competition.

Asia continues to be a leading broadband player, not only in the roll-out of broadband infrastructure, but also in promoting and applying the increased use of broadband to facilitate the digital economy.

Improving International connectivity provides a boost for fibre rollouts in the Middle East.

Along with an increasing number of governments around the world, the US has taken the view that a trans-sector use of broadband infrastructure is a key driver for economic growth.

The share of all broadband subscribers held by HFC networks across Europe fell from 26% in 2002 to about 11% by mid-2013.

By mid 2013 in Australia, NBN Co indicated that the national broadband rollout plan was now slightly above target.

Data in this report is the latest available at the time of preparation and may not be for the current year


  • EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
  • GLOBAL BROADBAND: THE FUTURE-PROOF SOLUTION
    • GLOBAL BROADBAND - IMPORTANT FOR SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
      • Can we afford not to have a fibre optic infrastructure?
      • Broadband doesn't just equal high-speed Internet
        • Table Worldwide fixed broadband subscribers and annual change - 2005 - 2013
        • Table Regional - Share of broadband subscribers - Q1 2011
      • The thousands of unreported benefits of high-speed infrastructure
      • The many aspects of broadband infrastructure
      • Trans-sectoral thinking required for governments
      • Barriers to NBN and broadband adoption
      • Conclusion
    • THE BROADBAND COMMISSION FOR DEVELOPMENT
      • introduction
      • The connected society
      • A cost-effective platform for progress
      • Trans-sector approach begins to take hold
      • Developments in 2013
      • Developments in 2012
      • Developments in 2011
      • The final reports
  • BROADBAND INFRASTRUCTURE AND THE GFC
    • ICT AND BROADBAND - IMPORTANT FOR GLOBAL RECOVERY
      • The GFC in context
        • Table Global - telecoms capital expenditure (CAPEX) - 2008 - 2013
        • Table Global - telecoms services revenue - 2008 - 2012
      • Market insights
        • Table Global - telecom statistics at a glance - 2013
      • Investing in the Communications Revolution
        • Table Examples of countries with planned ICT infrastructure investment - 2009
      • FttH emerges as a serious broadband platform
        • Table Broadband market share by access technology - 2008; Mid 2010; Mid 2012
      • Europe
      • Co-development of fibre and the digital economy
      • Infrastructure essential for the digital economy
        • Table How investing in broadband can boost economies
  • NATIONAL BROADBAND NETWORKS (NBN)
    • INTRODUCTION TO NATIONAL BROADBAND NETWORKS
      • National broadband; leadership or procrastination?
      • National Broadband Network Company
      • Open network
      • Technology critical consideration
      • Wireless broadband
      • Other quick-win areas
      • Trans-sector government
      • Using electricity infrastructure to roll out broadband
      • Broadband case studies
        • Table Denmark - broadband statistics - 2012 (e)
  • THE IMPORTANCE OF A HOLISTIC APPROACH
    • TRANS-SECTOR POLICY DEVELOPMENT
      • Broadband essential for economic development
      • Australia first cab off the rank
      • Activities in other countries
      • Briefing international investment houses
      • Proud of the part we are playing
  • OPEN NETWORKS: A KEY ELEMENT FOR TRANSFORMATION
    • INTRODUCTION TO OPEN NETWORKS
      • Economic stimulus packages and open networks
      • Open Access Principles
      • Backgrounder: Unbundling of the local loop
      • Rethink of Universal Service Obligations/Funds
      • Conclusion: open networks engine for innovation and growth
  • GLOBAL BROADBAND STATISTICS AND TRENDS
    • MARKET OVERVIEW
      • The end of HFC and FttN networks is approaching
      • FttH - awesome - but what is its purpose?
        • Table Faster broadband speeds offer more than just fast Internet
        • Table Why the average home will soon require 50Mb/s
      • The pros and cons of vectoring
      • Global fixed broadband market summary
        • Table Global - internet users and annual change - 2009 - 2013
        • Table Regional - share of broadband subscribers - Q1 2011
        • Table Global - fixed broadband subscribers and annual change - 2005 - 2013
        • Table Top ten broadband countries by subscribers - Q2 2012
        • Table Regional - share of broadband household penetration - Q 2012
        • Table Market penetration of households with broadband access as a percentage of all households - selected countries - 2009 - 2011
        • Table Broadband market share by access technology - 2008; Mid 2010; Mid 2012
        • Table Average broadband price per month - selected countries - Q1 2013
        • Table OECD - top 5 countries with most expensive and cheapest broadband price per Mb/s - March 2012
        • Table Global - average entry level monthly broadband price by technology - Q4 2010 - 2012
        • Table Regional - average entry level monthly broadband price by technology - Q2 2012
        • Table Average broadband connection speed - top 10 countries - Q1 2011; Q4 2011; Q4 2012
        • Table Global - average overall fixed broadband and upload speeds - 2008 - 2012
        • Table Global - total broadband services revenue - 2011; 2012
        • Table Major 11 broadband carriers by subscribers - 2010; 2011
      • Countries with broadband policies
        • Table Countries with existing national policies to adopt broadband - 2012
        • Table Asia - fixed (wired) broadband markets ranked by population penetration - June 2012
      • The submarine cable conundrum
  • REGIONAL OVERVIEWS
    • NORTH AMERICA
      • Overview
      • Municipalities
        • Table Non-RBOC and overall FttH take-up rates - 2002 - 2013
      • Google Fiber
      • Gigabit City Challenge
    • LATIN AMERICA
      • Overview
        • Table LAC - fixed broadband subscribers and penetration - 2001 - 2013
      • Argentina
        • Table Argentina - fixed broadband subscribers and penetration rates - 2001 - 2013
        • Table Argentina - fixed broadband market share by technology- 2003-2013
      • Brazil
        • Table Brazil - fixed broadband subscribers and penetration - 2001 - 2013
        • Table Brazil - fixed broadband market share by technology - 2002 - 2013
    • EUROPE
      • Next Generation Networks
      • Cable developments
      • DSL Vectoring
    • AFRICA
      • International fibre bandwidth continues to expand
      • National and regional fibre backbones
      • 3G and 4G will be the broadband access method of choice
    • MIDDLE EAST
      • International fibre access
      • Bahrain
      • Jordan
      • Oman
      • Qatar
      • Saudi Arabia
      • Turkey
      • UAE
    • ASIA
      • Overview
      • Taiwan
        • Table Taiwan - Fixed-line broadband subscribers, penetration and proportion of internet subscribers - 2000 - 2013
        • Table Taiwan - Broadband subscribers and households - September 2012
      • Japan
        • Table Japan - Broadband household connectivity and service availability - 2006 - 2008; 2011
        • Table Japan - Broadband subscribers and households - September 2012
        • Table Japan - Broadband subscribers and market share by access type - September 2012
        • Table Japan - Broadband subscribers by access type - 1998 - 2013
        • Table Japan - Broadband subscriber annual change and market share by access type - 2001 - 2012
        • Table Japan - Broadband internet access from the home by technology type - 1998 - 2013
      • South Korea
        • Table South Korea - UBcN implementation goals in households/subscribers - 2009 - 2013
        • Table South Korea - Broadband internet subscriber growth and penetration rate - 1998 - 2013
        • Table South Korea - Broadband subscribers and households - April 2013
        • Table South Korea - Broadband market share by operator - August 2012
      • Singapore
        • Table Singapore - Broadband subscribers - 1999 - 2013
        • Table Singapore - Overview of broadband/household subscribers - March 2013
        • Table Singapore - Broadband subscribers by sector - March 2013
        • Table Singapore - Broadband market share - by access type - March 2013
        • Table Singapore - Total international internet bandwidth - 2006 - 2012
        • Table Singapore - Total optical fibre broadband subscribers - 2011 - 2013
    • PACIFIC REGION
      • Australia
        • Table Australia - NBN Deployment schedule for 2013-21 corporate plan
      • New Zealand

Download our eBook: How to Succeed Using Market Research

Learn how to effectively navigate the market research process to help guide your organization on the journey to success.

Download eBook

Share this report