What is FTTX?

If you’ve got an old, outdated network infrastructure in your building, it’s time to think about upgrading.  Fiber optic networks are faster and can carry more data than the copper wiring-based networks built in the 20th century, so it just makes sense to upgrade for better performance and reliability.  Anyone who is looking into installing a high speed fiber optic network for residential or commercial purposes has probably heard the acronym FTTX, but what does it mean?

Put simply, FTTX stands for “Fiber to the X.” In this case the “X” can refer to any number of fiber optic configurations that make up the “last mile” of a fiber optic network.  In layman’s terms, this refers to the portion of the fiber optic network that goes between a central office and its ultimate destination.  That final destination could be a home, business, school, data center, or any other type of building.  Here are some of the most common types of FTTX architectures:

Fiber to the Curb (FTTC)

This type of fiber optic network is designed to serve multiple customers from a single point.  In this case, the “curb” refers to a point outside of the building, which could include a pole-mounted device or other central communications shed.  This type of architecture is perfect for applications where multiple users need to be connected from a central point, like in a housing development, condominium complex, or office park.  The advantage of this type of connection is that it’s a cost effective way to run and maintain a large number of connections from a single point.

Fiber to the Building (FTTB)

In some cases, a fiber optic network may be connected to a node located within a building, rather than one outside.  This type of connection makes sense in applications where the building owner needs to maintain control over the connection point to prevent it from being damaged or accessed without permission.  This application is well-suited for any type of multi-dwelling unit like an apartment complex, dormitory, or office building because it can make for a shorter distance between the fiber optic network and the final destination, and it also allows the building owner to decide who can access it.

Fiber to the Home (FTTH)

Fiber optic networks can also be connected directly to a box on the outside of a home or other building.  Telecommunications providers often use this type of architecture to deliver multiple services from one contact point, as in the case of “triple play” services where broadband internet, telephone, and television services are provided from a single connection.

These are just a few of the FTTX architectures used around the world; there are so many other last mile configurations that can be used.  If you’re installing a fiber optic network in any type of building, TCG Structured Communications serves clients in the Philadelphia area including King of Prussia, PA, Montgomery County, and Cherry Hill, NJ.  Give us a call at (610) 639.0401 to speak to us about fiber optic contractor in Delaware and to get an estimate on your project.  Fiber optic networks are your link to a world of information; let us get you connected!

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