Why Fiber is Future Proof

Posted by Comporium Business Services on Feb 20, 2015 12:17:53 PM

B008 Metro EthernetBy Mark Whitfield, Engineering Manager Plant Facilities


Most of this article is going to be about the future. But before I get into that, let me briefly take you back to the past. For most of its history, Comporium primarily installed copper and coaxial cables in the last mile, from the electronics equipment to the home. We delivered POTS (plain old telephone service) over copper, and video services over coaxial. Fiber has been used for over three decades to interconnect telephone remotes (electronic locations) and for over two decades to extend video services.


In 2004, Comporium recognized the long-term benefits that fiber would provide over the traditional methods of delivering services to the home. The first fiber to the home (FTTH) neighborhood was built in 2004, and since that time, all new (greenfield) residential developments in our service area have been served with fiber.


Recently, Comporium started overbuilding existing copper and coax facilities in certain industrial parks with fiber. While fiber was built to businesses to meet a specific data request, the overbuild of existing facilities is proactive and intended to provide businesses with better, more reliable services. Many businesses in our serving area are served with fiber as well.


Why is fiber such a big deal? And why do people frequently describe fiber as being future proof?

Only fiber — taken all the way to subscribers’ homes and businesses — can meet the rapidly increasing need for bandwidth. According to the Fiber to the Home Council, worldwide bandwidth use roughly doubles every two years. Fiber can handle any bandwidth demand with ease. In fact, one bundle of fiber cable not much thicker than a pencil can carry all the world’s current communications traffic.


By contrast, copper offers limited bandwidth and is distance sensitive. A subscriber served on copper located 12,000 feet from the DSLAM (Digital Subscriber Line Access Multiplexer) location would get less speed than a subscriber 2,000 feet away. The DSL signal attenuates as it propagates down the copper cable, resulting in slower speeds.


In addition to providing virtually unlimited bandwidth, fiber also makes speed upgrades much simpler for the subscriber. For example, a fiber-fed business that desires to increase their Internet speed only requires Comporium to “push a few buttons” on our end. In most cases, no truck roll is required to the business location for an increased bandwidth request.


Comporium continues to aggressively deploy fiber throughout our territory. Over 22,000 homes are served via fiber and that number will continue to grow as our communities grow. Comporium is also aggressively overbuilding existing industrial parks, upgrading the level of services available. If your business is interested in the data speeds that fiber can deliver, contact Comporium’s Business Services Group. Then regardless of what the future brings, fiber will future proof your bandwidth needs.

Topics: bandwidth, businesses, Communications, Fiber, Ethernet

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