Parisians Plan EPON Network

Parisian municipal consortium Sipperec is building a wholesale EPON-based access network to provide businesses with gigabit speeds

September 11, 2007

2 Min Read
Parisians Plan EPON Network

Paris looks set to become the undisputed fiber access capital of Europe. With Orange (NYSE: FTE), Iliad (Euronext: ILD), Neuf Cegetel Group (Euronext: NEUF), and cable operator Numericable-SFR already touting FTTH-based services in and around the French capital, a consortium of Parisian communities has announced it is to hook up more than 6,000 businesses to a 1-Gbit/s symmetrical service starting in October. (See Free Unveils FTTH, Better Profits, Iliad Updates on FTTH, 3G, FT Unveils NGN, FTTH Plans, Neuf Makes Acquisitions Count, and Euro Cable Operators Splash Some Cash.)

Sipperec , an authority that organizes power and telecom services on behalf of 86 municipalities around Paris (see map below), has announced a fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) network called Sequantic, which builds on the authority's fiber backbone. (See Wave7 Wins Paris Deal.)


The authority has hired contractor and integrator Spie Communications to build out the new access portion of its network and install Wave7 Optics Inc. Trident7 optical access platforms configured for an Ethernet passive optical network (EPON).

The resulting point-to-multipoint network will connect to buildings that house about 6,500 enterprises in 147 business areas located in the municipalities. Sipperec will then sell capacity on the network to service providers, so adopting the "open access" model that is favored by municipal network developments like the Citynet in Amsterdam. (See Amsterdam Commits to FTTH.)

Sipperec's choice to deploy an EPON solution sets it apart from other Parisian fiber access projects, which are deploying either Gigabit PON (GPON) equipment in their point-to-multipoint rollouts or point-to-point Active Ethernet platforms.

EPON, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc. (IEEE) standard for Ethernet in the First Mile (EFM), has been the FTTx technology of choice in Asia/Pacific, especially in Japan, but GPON is expected to dominate PON rollouts in the future. (See Bright Prospects for GPON and PON & FTTx Update.)

News of the Sequantic network deployment, which is due to start delivering services in October, is something of a coup for Wave7, as its equipment will be deployed right under the nose of its main rival for European PON business, Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU).

— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

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