Definitive Views on GPON vs EP2P…

If you were one of the early followers of Fiberevolution, you know that one of the first "visible" posts explored the issue of incumbent GPON deployment.I did not know it back then (although I found out real fast!), but I had stumbled upon one of the great religious wars of the NGA world (the other being cable vs. fiber.) I revisited the issue several times on this blog, and over the course of 18 months, I talked on this issue to numerous service providers and vendors.

Last November, I started to write a report that would summarize my views. This report, entitled GPON or EP2P: Choosing an FTTH Architecture is the result of these discussions and a string of specific interviews. Vendors interviewed include Cisco, Alcatel-Lucent, Hitachi, LG-Nortel, Ericsson, Huawei, PacketFront and ADVA Optical. Service providers interviewed for this report include Reggefiber, Telecom New Zealand, Amsterdam Citynet, BT, PBC, Free/Iliad, i3, Swisscom and Fastweb, Lafayette Utilities System, Verizon and more.

For obvious reasons, I can't share this report or even its conclusions here. It's available to Yankee Group Link Research customers and can be custom purchased on the Yankee Group online store as well. What I can do here is tell you what I tried to achieve, and hopefully convince you that the report is worth looking into.

The starting point of my thought process was that the debate as it is often framed by vendors is sterile. Both sides more or less claim that theirs is the superior technology at lower costs. That's not helpful to service providers (and, I suspect, not to vendor credibility either…) A technology, after all, is only as good as what you do with it. What I endeavoured to do therefore was to frame the technology choices in context by answering these two questions: which technology choice is best aligned with which strategic objectives, and which deployment model should be chosen (for GPON in particular) to maintain that alignment.

I hope you find it interesting and challenging and would welcome comments!