Alternative Suppliers of Digital Network Access Facilities 2005 Update


High speed telecommunications services are increasingly provided using new deployments of fibre optic based access facilities. For these new optical access technologies and related services, we believe that traditional telecom carriers have no incumbent network advantage.

Fibre optic facilities in the access network can be characterized as a “green field” environment for incumbent telephone companies and new entrants alike. Both classes of carriers must build new facilities, with similar challenges, similar risks and similar opportunities for success. In most major centres, and many smaller communities, alternative suppliers of fibre optic transmission facilities have emerged. Beyond the incumbent telephone companies, there are a number of companies that are leveraging existing businesses, and existing rights-of-way derived from these businesses, in order to compete in the provision of fibre optic-based broadband telecommunications services.

Electric utilities and cable companies have been particularly active in the exploitation of their outside plant resources and their available rights-of-way in order to cost-effectively enter the broadband communications marketplace. As a result, in Bell Canada territory, a vibrant competitive market for high speed digital network access facilities can be observed.

In this report, we identify the major sources of competitive supply of fibre optic based digital network access facilities and conclude that alternative suppliers for these facilities exist and are firmly entrenched in many geographic areas.

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