Some call it the holy grail of internet and television. Fiber direct to my home is well on the way. Thanks, TELUS.
It seems like every horizontal drilling crew in Alberta is camped out in my southwest Calgary neighborhood this year. Our major telco TELUS is installing fiber direct to my home. Good stuff.
This $2 billion investment started last year, and if all goes well, will connect 90% of Calgary to a pure fiber-to-the-home network by 2023. Up until now, our only alternatives were coaxial cable and copper wires. Hopefully, light sent optically will cause less neighborhood RFI than various DSL or cable technologies. I will probably make the switch.
This will be the first time in my life that I have used light rather than radio or copper for connectivity.
Up until now, cable companies have held the monopoly on fast internet. Fiber optic is more expensive to install, but faster and more reliable over long distances. Since we don’t have electricity travelling over copper, RFI ingress or egress should be a distant memory.
Up until recently, fast cable distribution has dominated at around 90% of homes, while fiber optic has been 10-15%. At least in some communities, that is all about to change. Some Asian and European countries have been leaders in fiber optic, in the range of 70-80% of households.
Fiber Direct to My Home – Big Construction Project
You will find that installing fiber to the home / premises is hugely expensive. Around $50,000 per mile. Around $500/home from the street in urban areas. Optical cable costs $1-$5 per foot depending on capacity.
By comparison, old technologies are cheaper but cable television and phone lines are now legacy investments.
Fiber installation requires a lot of digging, but should provide a ton of capacity, speed and reliability over the next few generations. Hopefully, TELUS can attract enough new customers to pay back its investment without raising prices.