50 percent of all fiber optic cables go to China

While there is still very little FTTH in Germany, China is buying up the market for fiber optics. A large part is used worldwide not only for FTTx, but also for mobile communications.

Half of the fiber optic cable kilometers of the largest manufacturer are sold to China. Of these, 20 percent go to the same customer: the telecommunications company China Unicom. That said, Alessandro Pirri, Connectivity and FTTx Manager at Prysmian Group, on 16 February 2016, the FTTH Council Europe in Luxembourg. Prysmian is the world’s largest cable manufacturer in terms of sales.

The statements made by the manager illustrate the extent to which glass fiber is currently being expanded in China.

Deutsche Telekom still operates little FTTH expansion. Nonetheless, last year, she laid 10,000 kilometers of glass fiber in Germany for vectoring. Demand for glass fiber is the expansion of various forms of FTTx (Fiber to the X) and for mobile networks, where fiber is used in the backhaul and Fronthaul. “Fixed or mobile, there is no difference,” said Pirri.

Market for fiber optic cable is growing very strong

Since the nineties, the industry has built 2.4 billion kilometers of fiber, said Pirri. The market is currently growing very strongly every year.

In his presentation, Pirri said that fiber is a sensitive cable. “It’s just perfect just after it’s made, and then you can break it down by breaking, crushing, bending, and if it breaks too much, it will break.”

The Flextube technology of the manufacturer is insensitive to Micro Bending. What the operators often forget is that the FTTH network also needs energy, such as to operate the lasers. It is important that the operator plan the network from the beginning and take enough time for it, said Sopto.