& cplSiteName &

Frontier Pursues Broader Business Footprint

Carol Wilson
4/7/2014
50%
50%

Frontier Communications may be best known as the independent telco which has purchased major local telco assets from both Verizon and AT&T, but the company is leveraging its new, broader footprint to roll out next-gen business services on a national basis.

Most recently, Frontier Communications Corp. (NYSE: FTR) introduced a cloud-based voice solution, Frontier AnyWare, which replaces business voice systems, and soon to come is Frontier Business Edge, taking advantage of investments the company has made in its local access facilities.

And with the addition of the AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) Connecticut footprint, a deal expected to close by the fall of this year, Frontier will have a significant presence in the densely populated Northeast US corridor. (See AT&T-Frontier Deal: A Sign of Things to Come?)

The company didn't get to this point without some pain, admits CEO Dan McCarthy, especially in the aftermath of its 2010 acquisition of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) properties in 14 states for $8.6 billion in stock. While that acquisition included a smattering of FiOS fiber-to-the-home deployments in Fort Wayne, Ind., North Myrtle Beach, S.C. and in the Pacific Northwest, it also included many rural areas where broadband was barely available or non-existent. (See A Brave New Frontier – in an RV.)

Frontier embarked on a major investment in upgrading its local loop facilities, deploying IP-based DSLAMs from Adtran Inc. (Nasdaq: ADTN) and Calix Networks Inc. (NYSE: CALX) and pushing fiber deeper into its network to support both broadband for consumers and Ethernet services for businesses or wholesale customers, McCarthy says. (See Adtran Upgrades FTTH & VDSL Products.)

"The investment was done around creating an ecosystem for broadband customers, commercial or residential," he tells Light Reading. "We used gigabit Ethernet links and 10-gigabit links to replace old DSLAMs fed by OC-3 fiber, and put in Adtran and Calix systems that are essentially Swiss Army knives for serving a lot of different types of customers."

The replacement of the many existing access systems by newer technology and the integration of multiple back-office systems did slow things down for Frontier, McCarthy admits, for a 12- to 18-month period. The company found itself the brunt of complaints from former Verizon customers who were unhappy with what they had and impatient for improvement. (See The Brave Old Frontier, Frontier Goes All-Adtran – For Now, and Calix Pushing CE 2.0 Solutions.)

The advantage now is that Frontier has more ubiquitous reach for MPLS-based switching systems on a unified IP network that McCarthy sees as the formula for future success serving small to mid-sized businesses, and even those multi-location operations with major facilities in its footprint.

Frontier continues to invest in deploying fiber where it makes sense -- in its green-field builds and to wireless towers where the bandwidth is required, but is being judicious in that effort.

"People are looking for pure fiber, but for most services, copper is just fine -- we can get up to 50 Mbit/s and with bonding, get even higher and that works well for small to mid-sized business space," McCarthy says. "We are using a disciplined approach where mobile backhaul is concerned, we are very strategic."

That means Frontier won't spend $250,000 to run fiber to a wireless tower in the middle of a corn field that isn't showing signs of needing greater capacity than the multiple T-1s it has today.

Absorbing Connecticut won't require the same kind of investment that the Verizon properties did because AT&T has already deployed its U-verse fiber-to-the-node system in many parts of the state. Frontier will have to integrate the back office for U-verse and is already at work obtaining content rights so consumers won't notice a change in channel line-up with the sale's completion, targeted for October. The company is working with Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) on the integration process, as it now owns the Media Room middleware developed by Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT).

And where AT&T hasn't rolled out better broadband, Frontier will, using its substantial experience in upgrading less densely populated areas.

"One of the most attractive things to us was that Connecticut is already 96% broadband and the U-verse platform passes 50 percent of the homes," McCarthy says. "It's a very well-invested state. We will bring our focus to the rural areas, and we will be pushing pretty hard to get speeds higher in those areas using our distribution strategy."

— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading

(1)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Carol Wilson
50%
50%
Carol Wilson,
User Rank: Blogger
4/7/2014 | 2:20:54 PM
Voice still being heard
Frontier is one of the many competitive players selling business voice as a leading service, funny how that is working out. Voice services are now a staple of CLEC offerings. 
Educational Resources
sponsor supplied content
Educational Resources Archive
Light Reading’s Upskill U is a FREE, interactive, online educational resource that delivers must-have education on themes that relate to the overall business transformation taking place in the communications industry.
NEXT COURSE
Wednesday, September 28, 1:00PM EDT
Gigabit 101
Will Barkis, Senior Technology Analyst, Orange
UPCOMING COURSE SCHEDULE
Friday, September 30, 1:00PM EDT
Gigabit & the Great Migration
Robert Howald, Vice President, Network Architecture, Comcast
Wednesday, October 5, 1:00PM EDT
Gigabit & Smart Cities
Joe Kochan, COO & Co-Founder, US Ignite
Friday, October 7, 1:00PM EDT
Gigabit & DOCSIS 3.1
Ty Pearman, Director, Access Architecture, Comcast
in association with:
From The Founder
Light Reading today starts a new voyage as part of a larger Enterprise.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Documentaries
MEC Congress: The Key Takeaways

9|22|16   |   03:25   |   (3) comments


Three key takeaways from the Mobile Edge Computing (MEC) Congress in Munich, Germany.
Wagner’s Ring
Time to Shut Up About 'Dumb Pipes'

9|22|16   |     |   (12) comments


Service providers can't compete with OTT players. It just isn't in their DNA. Instead, service providers need to embrace what they're good at -- providing reliable, secure connectivity.
Wagner’s Ring
Keeping Your Tech Career Going After 50

9|21|16   |     |   (13) comments


How do you keep your career moving forward when you're past the half-century mark?
LRTV Interviews
Peering Into the Digital Future

9|20|16   |   04:25   |   (0) comments


Nick Thomas, practice leader of digital media at Ovum, talks about how digital transformation in the technology, media and telecom sectors will enable the development of a new range of applications and services for enterprises and consumers and how the upcoming Digital Futures event in London will examine ...
LRTV Custom TV
Napatech Tackles NFV's Major Challenge

9|7|16   |   08:42   |   (0) comments


One of the main challenges for network operators introducing NFV is to combine performance and flexibility in a cost-effective way, but there is a solution, explains Napatech's Dan Joe Barry.
LRTV Custom TV
Huawei Optical Innovation 2016

9|6|16   |     |   (0) comments


Highlights of the 2016 Huawei Optical Innovation forum.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Are You Ready for Huawei Connect 2016?

8|31|16   |     |   (0) comments


Join us for an exclusive sneak peak of Huawei Connect, an integrated conference for the global ICT ecosystem taking place in Shanghai.
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat: UXP's Gemini Waghmare

8|26|16   |     |   (0) comments


Light Reading CEO Steve Saunders and UXP Systems CEO Gemini Waghmare discuss the strategic importance of digital identity for operators in the midst of transformation.
LRTV Custom TV
F5 Virtual Network Function Integrations With Partner Orchestration Platform

8|24|16   |   6:38   |   (0) comments


F5's Kishore Patnam, product manager for F5's service provider solutions, discusses why service providers are moving towards virtualization and how his clients are utilizing F5's solutions.
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat: Intel's Alexis Black Bjorlin

8|17|16   |   06:23   |   (0) comments


Join us for an in-depth interview between Steve Saunders of Light Reading and Alexis Black Bjorlin of Intel as they discuss the release of the company's Silicon Photonics platform, its performance, long-term prospects, customer expectations and much more.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Accelerating Telecom Digital Transformation With Nominum DNS

8|1|16   |   12:04   |   (0) comments


Light Reading's Steve Saunders gets an update from Nominum CEO Gary Messiana on how his company is helping carriers on the digital transformation journey.
LRTV Custom TV
Reinventing Operations for a Virtual, Software-Defined World

7|28|16   |   5:23   |   (0) comments


Heavy Reading Senior Analyst Jim Hodges speaks with Accenture's Larry Socher and Matt Anderson about what service providers must do to transform their business to get the benefits of SDN and NFV including: leveraging DevOps, introducing real-time OSS and implementing analytics.
Upcoming Live Events
November 3, 2016, The Montcalm Marble Arch, London
November 30, 2016, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 1, 2016, The Westin Times Square, New York, NY
December 6-8, 2016, The Westin Excelsior, Rome
May 16-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Hot Topics
Keeping Your Tech Career Going After 50
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 9/21/2016
Time to Shut Up About 'Dumb Pipes'
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 9/22/2016
Comcast Will Go Wireless in 2017
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 9/20/2016
Sprint CEO: We'll Lease Spectrum as Soon as Possible
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 9/20/2016
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Light Reading CEO Steve Saunders and UXP Systems CEO Gemini Waghmare discuss the strategic importance of digital identity for operators in the midst of transformation.
Join us for an in-depth interview between Steve Saunders of Light Reading and Alexis Black Bjorlin of Intel as they discuss the release of the company's Silicon Photonics platform, its performance, long-term prospects, customer expectations and much more.
Animals with Phones
You Thought Your Customer Service Was Unreliable... Click Here
Live Digital Audio

A vital part of increasing the number of women in comms is transforming the ways companies can support and empower women. While progressive company policies that support both men and women in achieving work-life balance are a step in the right direction, creating a company culture that supports those policies can at times be more challenging.

During this show, we'll talk to Lynn Comp, Senior Director of Industry and Sales Enabling (ISE) in the Network Platforms Group at Intel, about why those challenges exist and how companies can overcome them. She'll provide insight into how Intel has worked to create a culture that supports work-life balance, and provide steps and guidance for other companies wishing to do the same. We will also leave plenty of time to get your questions answered live on the air.