By Hartwig Tauber, Director General of the FTTH Council Europ
Our television viewing habits are changing. The days when the family gathered in one room around a tiny TV set with a very limited choice of broadcast channels are over. Now there is a huge amount of content to choose from, and each family member wants to choose exactly how and when to watch it. As consumers, we want to watch our favourite shows at any time, in different places, and on different devices. No wonder that on-demand and catch-up services such as Apple TV, BBC iPlayer and Netflix are becoming ever more popular.
Video is already the dominant form of traffic on the internet, according to one study. As high-definition (HD) becomes the prevailing video format, and more devices are manufactured with an Internet connection, the capacity required for entertainment services will continue to grow. On top of this, many next-generation services will depend on video communication, for example, between doctors and patients in rural areas, or students taking university study courses at a distance. Clearly, video has a big future, and looks set to be vitally important to our future wellbeing.
Unfortunately, the networks capable of supporting our new viewing habits are not in place. A cost-effective, future proof solution is required, and that means fibre-to-the-home (FTTH). Only FTTH offers the capacity, flexibility and reliability needed to support exciting, new content-based business models and services.