If you want to use a broadband connection based on fiber optics, you can choose between FTTX products and VDSL vectoring in Germany. Vectoring is an extension of VDSL technology that uses both fiber optics and the copper cable that is classic for DSL tariffs and is available in more and more areas. FTTX (“Fiber To The …”) stands for fiber optic Internet, with the X acting as a placeholder for various connection options. Availability and Internet speed vary depending on the type, which is why it is important to compare advantages and disadvantages as well as the costs involved.
- With the help of fiber optic lines, VDSL vectoring is intended to eliminate transmission loss through copper cables.
- Supplying households with fiber optics is expensive for providers and is more vulnerable than copper lines.
- VDSL vectoring is an alternative to cable internet with high transmission rates and is known as a temporary solution.
What does VDSL vectoring and FTTX mean?
Fiber optic cables transmit data using optical signals and guarantee maximum speed with the greatest possible spatial independence from distribution stations. Because of these properties, fiber optic cables form the backbone of German communication networks and are also crucial for VDSL vectoring and FTTX solutions. VDSL and FTTN (“Fiber To The Node / Curb”) use fiber optic lines on the route from the provider to the local cable distributor and copper cables on the last section to the consumer. These few hundred meters may cost users a large part of the maximum possible transmission rate – a situation that one would like to eliminate with the introduction of VDSL vectoring.
FTTB (“Fiber To The Basement”) avoids this problem by laying fiber optic cables right down to the basement and only using copper cables inside the house. Anyone who would like to use this small section based on fiber optics and thus the full bandwidth of the fiber optic cable can use FTTH (“Fiber To The Home”). FTTH stands for a fiber optic connection from the network operator to the consumer and thus for maximum Internet performance and the latest fiber optic expansion.
What are the advantages of fiber optics? Something against?
Internet via fiber optic offers advantages in terms of stability and speed: over 1000 Mbit / s are possible. In addition, consumers can count on high-speed Internet almost regardless of the distance to the local cable distributor and, thanks to large bandwidth reserves, use the network technology of the future today. Through increased expansion, 75 percent of German households should be provided with fast broadband internet in the next few years. However, consumers who want to find out about the availability of fiber optics can already benefit from FTTX solutions and their faster and future-proof fiber optic technology.
Despite all the advantages, it should be noted that fiber optic expansion is associated with high costs for providers: the provider has to spend an average of around 2400 euros to supply a household directly with fiber optic technology. In addition, as a material, glass fiber is more susceptible to damage than the good old copper cable and (in contrast to ISDN) cannot conduct electricity, which in the event of a power failure would make it impossible for the provider to provide an emergency power supply to maintain the telephone connection. Furthermore, telephony with fiber optics is operated via VoIP (Voice over IP), so that consumers can be exposed to factors that impair the line, such as high latency.
Advantages and disadvantages of vectoring
According to abbreviationfinder, VDSL vectoring is an extension of the existing VDSL2 technology, which is why it also uses fiber optic lines up to the local cable distributor and only bridges the last section to the end customer with a copper cable. As a result, vectoring offers consumers Internet speeds of up to 100 Mbit / s – a multiple of conventional DSL tariffs. In addition, compared to pure fiber optic solutions such as FTTB and FTTH, vectoring requires significantly lower expansion costs, as it is based on some of the existing VDSL technology. In the medium term, vectoring is to serve as an intermediate step to pure fiber optic connections and also represents the basis for the G.fast standard promoted by Deutsche Telekom, with which transmission rates of up to 1000 Mbit / s are to be made possible.
Even if vectoring is described as an interim solution and criticized because of the central control it requires, it is a serious alternative to cable internet. Against this background, it is understandable that vectoring is attracting more and more interest and is taken into account by consumers when choosing their broadband connection should be.