Deutsche Telekom Partners With Electric Utility for FTTH

BONN, GERMANY - German incumbent telco Deutsche Telekom announced its first joint project with an electric utility to operate a fiber-to-the-home network.

The regional utility, energie in sachsen (eins), will construct the infrastructure in the city of Chemnitz, and Deutsche Telekom will operate the network. The first customers will be connected as early as fall 2012, with 20,000 homes connected in each of the next three years. The network will offer Internet access at speeds of up to 200 Mbps.

"By constructing this optical fiber network, we are laying the foundation for super high-speed Internet access in many parts of Chemnitz. Being able to communicate at the speed of light improves the quality life for the people of this city and makes it even more attractive as a place to do business," says Reiner Gebhardt, eins' board chairman. "We invite property owners within the footprint of the rollout to take part in the project. This is an investment in the value of the buildings and helps boost the standing of our region."

Although the costs of connection will be borne by the deployers, active cooperation from property owners is necessary because eins needs owner consent for the network construction work up to the building and inside the front door. Property owners in Chemnitz will receive mailings from eins in the next weeks and months.

Once 80 percent of property owners in the first rollout area opt for an optical fiber connection and 10 percent of homes subscribe to fiber-based services, the roll-out will continue in additional areas of Chemnitz. When the fiber network is completed, Deutsche Telekom will lease it from eins and will open it to other retail service providers.

DT's chairman, Nief Jan van Damme, says the project is the largest FTTH build that Deutsche Telekom has undertaken anywhere in Germany as well as its first partnership with a regional utility. Van Damme adds that DT is open to similar collaborations with other partners.

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