FTTH: Alive & Well in Europe

7:20 AM -- COPENHAGEN -- FTTH Council Europe Conference 2009 -- It's Day 1 of this annual event, and there's little sign of any corporate travel bans among the FTTH brigade.

The opening conference session attracted more than 1,000 bodies into a dark auditorium, and more than 2,000 have registered for the event. There are more than 70 exhibitors, and the show floor is buzzing. There's no sign of exhibition tumbleweeds here.

And while there are a few of the bigger vendor names on the show floor -- Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU) and Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC), for example, while Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) is a lead sponsor but doesn't have a stand -- the majority of exhibitors are the specialist fiber access equipment firms, test vendors, and component firms (speciality fiber, and so on.)

The interesting looking sessions come later today, when Tier 1 operators and municipalities update on their fiber access rollouts and challenges.

Maybe then we'll find out why, when there is so much interest and so many initiatives in European FTTH rollouts -- see Dutch Team Up for FTTH Expansion, Swisscom Plans $2.3B FTTx Rollout, European Minnow Boasts Fastest FTTH, Portugal 'Gets' FTTH, and Russian Altnet Makes FTTx Plans, for example -- there are still relatively few users. (See Swedes Top Euro FTTH Ranking.)

— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

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