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Coaxial/FTTP?
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Old 04-09-2019, 10:19   #1
chambohambo
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Coaxial/FTTP?

Hi,

Will coaxial customers ever get upgraded to FTTP?

Thanks for looking at my post and Iíll look forward to the responses.

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Old 04-09-2019, 11:33   #2
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Re: Coaxial/FTTP?

"Ever" is a long time, but at the moment coax has more than enough capacity. It's better to extend the network to new premises than rebuild to existing ones IMO.
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Old 04-09-2019, 13:57   #3
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Re: Coaxial/FTTP?

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Originally Posted by chambohambo View Post
Will coaxial customers ever get upgraded to FTTP?
Coax has got plenty of life in it yet. VM have started rolling out docsis 3.1 so next year you'll be able to have a 1gbit connection which many users will associate with fibre speed.
I would also direct you to this thread.
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Old 05-09-2019, 20:42   #4
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Re: Coaxial/FTTP?

DOCSIS3.1 is capable of 10Gbit in the future. There's not likely to be overbuild on top of Coax for many years to come but at some point in future Virgin will probably stop deploying it and go straight for Fibre.
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Old 06-09-2019, 00:14   #5
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Re: Coaxial/FTTP?

When the cost of replacing/maintaining coax kit gets high enough to make replacing it all with fibre viable. Probably a long way off, but the build costs should be fairly reasonable considering the time consuming and expensive civils are mostly done already, just need a lot of men with strong arms to pull cables!
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Old 06-09-2019, 07:41   #6
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Re: Coaxial/FTTP?

Except Fibre installs work complete differently to coax ones as far I know.

Fibre installs have the fibre cable blown down the duct, not manually pulled using some rope or existing coax, so to convert a coax install to Fibre you'd first have to add an appropriate conduit for each house to allow that to happen.

Considering how full some coax ducts already are with the existing cabling, that means digging up the roads and pavements again
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Old 07-09-2019, 10:33   #7
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Re: Coaxial/FTTP?

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Originally Posted by BenMcr View Post
Considering how full some coax ducts already are with the existing cabling, that means digging up the roads and pavements again
that is why most fibre rollouts are primarily being done on new build estates.
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Old 07-09-2019, 22:06   #8
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Re: Coaxial/FTTP?

To address the technicalities of the question, for as long as VM transmit RF over Glass (RFOG), coax and fibre behave identically at the same QAM settings.

If VM's fibre has no coax interface anywhere along the route, VM could theoretically increase the QAM for fibre blessed customers when DOCSIS 3.1 comes along; that is because there will be little if no noise induced in the fibre.

So for now, it doesn't matter. I think VM will only be forced to provide FTTH in coax areas if BT does the same.


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Old 08-09-2019, 09:50   #9
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Re: Coaxial/FTTP?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skie View Post
When the cost of replacing/maintaining coax kit gets high enough to make replacing it all with fibre viable. Probably a long way off, but the build costs should be fairly reasonable considering the time consuming and expensive civils are mostly done already, just need a lot of men with strong arms to pull cables!

... and fix trenches and ducting.

---------- Post added at 09:50 ---------- Previous post was at 09:20 ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by spiderplant View Post
"Ever" is a long time, but at the moment coax has more than enough capacity. It's better to extend the network to new premises than rebuild to existing ones IMO.
A possible threat to VM, and a reason for them to convert from coax to FTTP, is the fibre roll out by Vodafone-City Fibre, already underway in cities like Coventry. (37 cities by the end of 2024) They will be offering a symmetrical 900Mb in the £40-£50 range. Can Docsis 3.1 offer a symmetrical service, or at least something much better than 10:1?

I know Vodaphone aren't offering a TV service, but customers could do a combination of Vodaphone broadband / Sky TV, or sky might itself be interested in using the Vodaphone network, much as it is now interested in VM's network.
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Old 08-09-2019, 19:01   #10
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Re: Coaxial/FTTP?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BenMcr View Post
Except Fibre installs work complete differently to coax ones as far I know.

Fibre installs have the fibre cable blown down the duct, not manually pulled using some rope or existing coax, so to convert a coax install to Fibre you'd first have to add an appropriate conduit for each house to allow that to happen.

Considering how full some coax ducts already are with the existing cabling, that means digging up the roads and pavements again
Probably a stupid question, but isn't the "conduit" for the fibre what you'd actually replace the coax with? I watched a fibre install into an office a couple of years ago - they installed what looked like vaguely bendy plastic tubing from the entrance all the way to the termination area. Then they just blew the fibre through that tube. What's stopping them from pulling said tube through the trench, then blowing fibre down it?
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Old 08-09-2019, 19:45   #11
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Re: Coaxial/FTTP?

That is a good point, and you're right that it would be possible if there is a clear route.

Would still mean some work though to prepare each end of the fibre to do it, in order to minimise the loss of service for those homes connected via that bit of the network. Also some of the cable routes would need to changed as coax and fibre deal with corners differently!
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Old 08-09-2019, 20:02   #12
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Re: Coaxial/FTTP?

Yeah, if the channels are full to bursting, I can't see how you'd upgrade an area without loss of service. You're absolutely right about corners as well, fibre doesn't like them very much and coax is super forgiving.

In spite of there being a possible upgrade path, I don't really see Virgin doing it any time soon. As Skie said, it'll only be if the cost of maintaining coax goes above installing fibre and I just don't see that happening in the next decade. Ye ol' coax has plenty of life in her, yet!
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Old 08-09-2019, 21:12   #13
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Re: Coaxial/FTTP?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sephiroth View Post
To address the technicalities of the question, for as long as VM transmit RF over Glass (RFOG), coax and fibre behave identically at the same QAM settings.

If VM's fibre has no coax interface anywhere along the route, VM could theoretically increase the QAM for fibre blessed customers when DOCSIS 3.1 comes along; that is because there will be little if no noise induced in the fibre.

So for now, it doesn't matter. I think VM will only be forced to provide FTTH in coax areas if BT does the same.
VM will be upgrading all its HFC network to DOCSIS 3.1, giving 1Gbps down (but only about 50Mbps up) with much faster speeds possible with additional investment, so why should VM be concerned about BT's FTTP? There is no case for overbuilding HFC with FTTP.
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