Open Fiber selects Nokia for rural FTTH rollout in Italy

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Italian wholesale provider, Open Fiber has selected Nokia for a fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) roll-out designed to bring ultra-broadband services to the small towns and rural areas of Italy.

The work falls under the Italian government’s ultra-broadband strategy, which was drawn up in 2015 (see Italy hopes to invigorate broadband with €6B investment). As part of this plan, the government identified four types of clusters (A, B, C and D) in the country: where each municipality was assigned to one cluster based on factors including lower or higher housing density, presence of broadband coverage and market size.

Nokia has been selected as the supplier for the more rural ‘white area’ clusters C and D. The company will deliver the products, services and software needed to plan, design, deploy and support the end-to-end active network infrastructure based on GPON technologies.

The network will bring optical fibre from a point of presence (PoP) to the customer's home, with the aim of delivering speeds of up to 1Gb/s. In line with the founding principles of the Gigabit Society, the new fibre deployment is designed to provide Open Fiber with a future-proof network that can support next generation fibre technologies. 

The Nokia equipment includes 7360 ISAM FX-16 and FX-4 platforms, 7362 DF - 16GW, 7368 ISAM ONTs and the 5520 AMS Element Manager. The 7360 FX platform supports new technology such as XGS-PON, NG-PON2 and will evolve towards a transformation into software defined networks (SDN), fitting Open Fiber’s aim to build a network that will be open to provide access to other operators.

Stefano Paggi, network and operations director at Open Fiber, said: ‘We have selected Nokia as our supplier in clusters C and D to deliver giga-services and pave the way for future ultrabroadband technology evolutions. With Nokia's solutions we will be able to offer services at 10Gb/s and in the future at 40Gb/s on the access network. We will also have the opportunity to adopt the software defined networking (SDN) paradigm and therefore to maximise the potential of a new generation access network, with high automation, programmable and integrated with cloud environments.’

Alessandro Manno, director Global Enterprise Italy, added: ‘Nokia has the products and delivery capability to support Open Fiber in this deployment journey. Our end-to-end solutions, professional services, consulting, maintenance and support services reduce risk and accelerate deployments, giving Open Fiber the confidence to adopt new technologies, enter new markets and extend the performance of existing networks.’

Open Fiber recently signed an agreement with a pool of commercial banks including Cassa Depositi e Prestiti and the European Investment Bank (EIB), securing a €3.5 billion finance programme to aid the roll out of FTTH across Italy (see Open Fiber gains €3.5 billion finance for Italy FTTH roll out).

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