Altice to upgrade fibre in US cable nets to speed service to 10 Gbps
30 November 2016 | Alan Burkitt-Gray
French group Altice has announced plans to upgrade the two US cable networks it bought at the end of 2015, Optimum and Suddenlink, to deliver 10Gbps to customers.
The company, which is now the fourth largest cable operator in the US, says it will build a fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) network in a five-year programme starting in 2017.
“Across the globe Altice has invested heavily in building state-of-the-art fibre-optic networks, and we are pleased to bring our expertise stateside to drive fibre deeper into our infrastructure for the benefit of our US Optimum and Suddenlink customers,” said Dexter Goei, chairman and CEO of Altice USA.
“Today, we have a best-in-class network with incredibly fast speeds and quality service, and by taking immediate steps to create the fastest next-generation network, we will be positioned to support our customers’ needs well into the future.”
Goei gave no details of the technology that Altice will use in its fibre in the US. The company said: “Altice USA will extend fibre deeper into its existing hybrid fibre coax network and leverage cutting-edge and proprietary technologies developed by Altice Labs, the company’s global research and development arm, to create its state-of-the-art system.”
The company said that under the project, which it is calling Generation GigaSpeed, it expects to reach “all of its Optimum footprint and most of its Suddenlink footprint during that [five-year] timeframe”.
It will announce the first areas to be upgraded “in the coming months”, said Altice. “In addition to delivering a superior customer experience for the long term, the new architecture will result in a more efficient and robust network with a significant reduction in energy consumption. Altice expects to reinvest efficiency savings to support the buildout without a material change in its overall capital budget.”
Altice added that since its acquisition of Suddenlink, followed by the acquisition of Optimum, formerly Cablevision, it has tripled internet speeds to 300Mbps for residential customers and 350Mbps for business customers in the Optimum areas. The company has also expanded 1Gbps broadband service”to nearly half of Suddenlink’s service area”.