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Deutsche Telekom plans further fiber deployment, but also to use copper

Germany's Deutsche Telekom plans to expand its network infrastructure over the next few years includes further deployment of optical fiber optics for its fixed network, but in combination with copper for the last leg.

A press release said that the company plans to increase top speeds for its mobile network to 150 Mbps. For the fixed network, it plans "to make 100-Mbps connections available on a large scale by installing more optical fiber in combination with vectoring on its last-mile copper plant." The network expansion, it said, is massive as it will include more than 52,000 construction sites across Germany in 2014. It projected that by 2016, more than 24 million households will be connected to the operator's fiber-optic network.

The expansion of the network infrastructure will include the "best possible" combination of technologies, including mobile communications, fixed-line, IP-based infrastructure and wireless connections (Wi-Fi), the release said. Deutsche Telekom Chairman of the Board René Obermann was cited as saying that the investment—more than €23 billion in Germany by 2015 goal—will further strengthen the company's leading position. "No other telecommunications company invests as much as Deutsche Telekom," he said. In the home, the use of vectoring technology and the expansion of the fiber-optic infrastructure will enable data transfer speeds of up to 100 Mbps in the fixed network, the release said. Some 12 million households are already connected to the group's fiber-optic network—almost exclusively via a fiber to the cabinet approach—and another 800,000 will join this year, it said, adding that 24 million households will be provided with fiber-optic connections via FTTC by the end of 2016. To achieve these kinds of figures, Deutsche Telekom will set up 17,600 additional multifunctional cabinets and lay approximately 10,000 km of fiber-optic cable to connect them, it said.

Deutsche Telekom notes that it is one of the world's leading integrated telecommunications companies, with 144 million mobile customers, 32 million fixed-network lines and more than 17 million broadband lines (as of June 30, 2013). The Group, present in some 50 countries with 231,000 employees worldwide, reported 2012 revenues of 58.2 billion euros, more than half of which came from outside Germany.

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