In Germany there are around 35.8 million gigabit-enabled Internet connections in the middle of the year, around a third of which are in use. That is around 4.5 million more cable and fiber optic connections than in the previous year. This is the result of the fourth gigabit study by Dialog Consult, which the Association of Providers of Telecommunications and Value-Added Services (VATM) presented on Tuesday at the start of the Anga Com broadband trade fair in Cologne.
The cable network operators provide the vast majority of the available gigabit connections. With just under 25.6 million available gigabit connections in the cable, the supply is only growing slowly. “The expansion of the Docsis 3.1 cable connections has already been largely completed,” explained study leader Torsten Gerpott. In the cable, the proportion of actively switched gigabit connections is 35 percent.
Telekom is helping
A good 10 million fiber optic connections (FTTH/FTTB) are now available in Germany – and the trend is rising: the study has recorded growth of 20 percent since the end of last year alone. The actual usage rate for fiber optic connections is also around one third. Deutsche Telekom built around 40 percent of the available FTTH/B connections. “After the pressure from the competition continued to grow, Telekom is now clearly focusing on the construction of FTTB/H,” explained Gerpott.
This means that a gigabit connection will be available for almost three quarters of German households in 2022. There is still room for improvement when it is used. Gerpott is convinced that customers will develop a taste for it. “The demand for high-bit-rate connections will continue to increase, since more and more applications require these high bandwidths,” said the telecommunications expert from the University of Duisburg-Essen.
Almost 18 percent of households with gigabit-capable connections also book a tariff with a bandwidth of 1 Gbit/s or more. According to the study, the data volume flowing over gigabit connections has grown by almost 10 percent in the past six months alone and is now around 340 GB per month.
According to the VATM, the fiber optic installation in rural areas has led to an improvement in the supply rate. At the same time, infrastructure competition is increasing in densely populated areas that are supplied with cable Internet. More than 5 million households have the choice between a gigabit cable connection and fiber optics.
“The figures show that the network expansion continues to be very dynamic,” summarizes VATM President David Zimmer and pleads for fair cooperation with Telekom. “Investors have discovered fiber optic expansion in Germany for themselves. The expanding companies of the VATM are committed to open access. Almost every week there are new partnerships between the members of the association. A nationwide expanding Telekom must do its part for the rapid network expansion and the offers there use where the open fiber optic networks of their competitors are.”