VATM study: soon 10 million FTTB/H connections in Germany

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By the end of June 2022, there should be over 10 million direct fiber optic connections (FTTB/H) in Germany, according to the current market analysis by the provider association VATM. Together with the DOCSIS 3.1 cable connections, the number of gigabit-capable connections should be 35.8 million by the middle of the year.

It was the switch to DOCSIS 3.1 that gave the number of gigabit connections in Germany a significant boost. In the meantime, however, the cable network has been largely modernized. At the end of 2021, the number of cable connections with DOCSIS 3.1 was 25.6 million, and by the end of June the number is expected to rise to 25.7 million – an increase of 100,000. This is one of the findings from the fourth gigabit study presented by the consulting firm Dialog Consult and VATM at the Anga Com broadband trade fair.

Growth in fiber optics

There is continued growth in direct fiber optic connections (FTTB /H). At the end of 2021 the number was 8.4 million, six months later it is 10.1 million according to the forecast. 3.2 million of the connections are active – i.e. booked by customers.

Deutsche Telekom's competitors provide 5.9 million connections, which 2.2 million customers actually book. That's a usage rate of 37.3 percent. Telekom has 4.2 million with 1 million active customers, which corresponds to a usage rate of 23.8 percent.

In view of the competition in fiber optic expansion, VATM President David Zimmer warns against overbuilding the infrastructure – a phenomenon that caused criticism even in the days of vectoring. Telekom must behave “fairly” and “not rely on superstructures or strategic relocation, which often delays expansion in rural areas or makes it economically impossible. We have to build together and not against each other”, said VATM President Zimmer

More than 70 percent of German households have a gigabit connection

The superstructure problem is already evident in the existing infrastructure. A total of 38.5 million gigabit-capable connections are expected to exist in Germany by the middle of the year. However, 5.3 million households can already choose between cable and fiber optics.

In the end, only 30.5 million households could book a gigabit connection by the middle of the year. According to VATM, that's 72.8 percent of the 41.9 million private households in Germany.