Telcos Standardize on Fiber to the Curb

BellSouth, SBC Communications and Verizon have adopted a set of common technical requirements based on industry standards and specs for FTTP (fiber to the premises) used to connect homes and businesses to telecom networks. The three companies issued a letter to telecom equipment makers, alerting them that the providers will soon be seeking proposals for equipment based on the rules.

The decision marks a big step toward deploying broadband networks that offer "nearly limitless bandwith" for home and business Internet and voice and video services. The telcos say that FTTP will be able to support interactive gaming, photo sharing, PC backup and telecommuting as well as video conferencing, premises surveillance and other on-demand video services.

The companies note that upcoming FCC rules, including a final order under its Triennial Review of network interconnection regulations, on new technologies like FTTP could help settle the extent to which unbundling and pricing regulations (like those imposed on copper-based networks) will apply on a nationwide basis.