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Fiber Access Market to Reach $1.9 Billion

Consumers and business users hungry for increased network capacity are ready to add a little fiber to their diets. According to new research from IDC, the worldwide fiber access equipment market will reach $1.9 billion in 2009, as users migrate to higher speed data services and innovative new services such as IPTV, HDTV, and Video on Demand (VOD).

The emergence of "triple play" � the integration of voice, video and data services on a single broadband connection � is driving service provider demand for more access network bandwidth. IPTV, HDTV, and VOD, in particular, are driving service providers around the world to upgrade their access networks with the capacity of fiber and the equipment that goes with it.

"Fiber access networks are the 'last mile' technology that bring the capacity of optical fiber directly to consumers and businesses," said Sterling Perrin, manager of IDC's Optical Networks research. "Following the stagnation of optical core networking over the past few years, the fiber access market is showing real promise, and, ultimately, can drive a reinvestment in the core."

In terms of technology, choices for fiber access will be drawn clearly along regional lines. U.S. carriers will remain committed to broadband passive optical networking (BPON) technology. Japan will focus on Ethernet passive optical networking (EPON) technology. Europe and Asia (excluding Japan) will favor point-to-point Ethernet, but there will be a small mix of EPON and BPON within both of these regions. Equipment vendors hoping to maximize on fiber access market growth will play in multiple technologies, and regions, if possible.

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