Glossary

F

Facilities
An umbrella term for infrastructure used to provide telecoms services.
Facilities-based
CLECs that own or lease their own facilities.
FER
Frame Error Rate
Fibre-optics
Fibre-optic (or optical fibre) technology is associated with the transmission of information in the form of a light impulse passed along a glass or plastic strand. Fibre optics uses photons travelling at the speed of light, rather than electrons via a metal conductor, as the signal carrier. Less subject to electromagnetic inter-ference, fibre-optic transmissions use a signal regenerator to convert the pulsed photon streams to electronic data flow at the fibre/copper interface. Fibre-optic cable essentially comes in two forms, single mode and multi-mode. WDM (wavelength division multiplexing), an optical transmission technique whereby two or more signals can be transmitted simultaneously through a single fibre using lasers with different wavelengths, enables the transmission of much higher data capacities than multiplexing over conventional copper wire, making fibre an ideal carrier medium. Although fibre-optic cable installation is often more costly, this is offset by its very high bandwidth capacity – a feature that has been successfully utilised by cable companies that deploy FTTC (fibre to the curb) for delivery of multimedia services to consumers. The feasibility of providing fibre to the home (FTTH) and fibre to the desk (FTTD) is, at present, still constrained largely by economic considerations.
FMC
Fixed-mobile convergence: The trend towards seamless connectivity between fixed and wireless telecoms networks. The ultimate goal of FMC is to optimise transmission of all data, voice and video communications to end users and their applications using a single device that operates on both wired and wireless networks. The challenge is to make sure connections are not dropped between access points and that services can be uniformly delivered and billed for any access technology. Generic access network (GAN) technology is designed to support FMC by making possible the integration of Bluetooth, 3G and Wifi connectivity in a single mobile handset, letting users make hands-free voice calls at less cost over Wifi networks, browse the internet and use other data applications over mobile infrastructure.
FMS
Fixed-to-mobile substitution: constitutes call substitution and line substitution.
FNO
Fixed network operator
FOC
Firm order confirmation: the form a local phone company issues to another phone company indicating when the circuits ordered are to be installed.
FOT
Fibre-optic terminal
FotM
Fan of the month
FPS
Frames per second is the measurement of the frequency (rate) at which an imaging device produces unique consecutive images called frames.
FR
Frame Relay
Frag
To kill someone temporarily in computer games.
FSO
1) Foreign switching office: identifies the switching entity when the subscriber is not being served from their traditional wire centre.      
2) Free space optics: line-of-site transmission systems based on infra-red that are deployed by carriers in areas where it would be difficult to install fixed-line infrastructure. Because it uses light, FSO is free from the licensing and regulation processes typically associated with wireless technology.
FTTC
Fibre to the curb: fibre is terminated in a street cabinet and buildings are connected over a short distance – typically under 100m and by copper pair.
FTTH
Fibre to the home: Also known as FTTP/FTTU (FTTx) and related to FTTC, FTTH is an access network where optical fibre is terminated within a residential or business building.
FTTN
Fibre to the node network
FTTP
Fibre to the premise (see FTTH)
FTTU
Fibre to the user (see FTTH)