Monday, May 01, 2006

Lattelekom's broadband game plan

Lattelekom has the biggest potential broadband customer base (a fair chunk of its 600 000 fixed network users) but is falling behind in the high-speed bells and whistles that some other providers can offer. Balticom, for instance, offers 10 Mbps in some Riga suburbs and a few downtown locations.
The biggest threat to Lattelekom is in the new/renovated housing market, where the inhabitants are likely to have the necessary discretionary income to buy high speed services and premium content (such as HDTV over the internet, when it become available). Here Latvenergo, the state owned energy utility and its subunit, Latvenergo Telecommunications, are putting in fiber to the home with speeds of up to 100 Mbps. While I am not sure just what you can do with 100 Mbps (show me the servers that can unload multiple streams of content at those speeds), Latvenergo has the advantage of putting in this service pretty much wherever new electricity connections are made. It has already run fiber to the residence in some multi-dwelling buildings and will soon be doing a single family home development of a number of homes.
My sources say Lattelekom has a plan to put up to 24 Mbps DSL in many Riga homes. In a major upgrade of its fiber optic network in most of Riga, the incumbent will install fiber to the curb units attached to mini-DSLAMs in local boxes that will deliver very fast DSL to an entire block of homes and businesses. This will involve replacing existing switchboxes with newer models that have back up and main power supplies, since the DSLAMs apparently need to be seperately powered. In other words, a bit of digging and installation.
Before that, you will probably see Lattelekom speeding up its existing DSL connections from the present 1 Mbps (pay LVL. 1.99 per month extra) to something like 10 Mbps just to keep up with the likes of Balticom and to at least match what Latvenergo will offer in its basic fiber to the home package.

4 comments:

Jüri Kaljundi said...

In Estonia Elion launched their digital TV and ADSL2+ this month (more information in Russian at http://tv.elion.ee/rus_index.php). That means for less than 20 LVL per month you get 12 Mbps downstream Internet, of which when you watch TV usually about 4-6 Mbps is used for TV, otherwise the whole 12MBps is available for Internet downloads. You also get 40+ digital TV channels and a telephone landline. The service will be available in big part of Estonia.

When you say which servers can strem 100 Mbps concurrently, remember that the digital IPTV above means there will be up to 12 Mbps TV streams sent in parallel to hundreds of thousands of people.

For now I would say the price/performance of Elion DigiTV is very good and it will establish 10+ Mbps to home as common standard here in Estonia, at least in cities.

Juris Kaža said...

Very interesting. The E-stonians are ahead again :). But what Elion is offering is the future...

Juris Kaža said...

BTW the E-stonians are a people who replaced the Estonians when the internet came in :).

jah.aga@gmail.com said...

No. It is not the future. I guess Elion has alraedy someting like 3000 - 5000 DigiTV customers.