DT on the lookout for fibre rollout partners

1 Mar 2011

German telecoms giant Deutsche Telekom (DT) has said it will need to partner with rival operators and energy companies in order to be able to expand its domestic fibre-optic broadband access network to more households. According to a report by Bloomberg, DT’s board member and head of German operations, Niek Jan van Damme, said at the CeBIT technology fair in Hanover that the German incumbent will start rolling out the direct fibre network imminently, and plans to reach 160,000 households in parts of ten German cities – Braunschweig, Bruhl, Hanover, Hennigsdorf, Neu-Isenburg, Kornwestheim, Mettmann, Offenburg, Potsdam and Rastatt – by the end of the year. CommsUpdate reported in March 2010 that DT plans to invest around EUR10 billion (USD13.8 billion) between 2010 and 2012 in fibre-optics, new mobile communications technologies, and IT processes in Germany, to give customers more speed and new products. By 2012 the company aims to pass up to 10%, around four million, of all households in Germany with its fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) network. However, to reach its target, the company will need to sign cooperation agreements with rivals and utility companies, which also have to lay cables to homes to build a smart energy network. Van Damme estimated that the industry will need to spend around EUR50 billion if it wants to cover all of Germany with a fibre-optic local access network. He also revealed that DT is looking to sign content deals with media companies to encourage subscribers to sign up for faster and more expensive internet connections.