Nokia aims to make it easier to install fiber-like broadband in MDUs

Nokia unveiled a new solution called Gigabit Connect which is designed to make broadband deployments in multi-dwelling units (MDUs) easier for fiber players who lack expertise with legacy cabling.

The company explained the product builds on, a technology which allows high-speed broadband to be delivered via copper and coax wiring over short distances. Specifically, Gigabit Connect is meant to make more friendly for fiber players by enabling the last leg of connectivity to be managed as a fiber endpoint under a single management interface.

Sandy Motley, president of Fixed Networks at Nokia, said in a statement it estimates 20% of MDUs present challenges for fiber installations. While “goes a long way to solving the problem,” Motley said it can be hard for operators unfamiliar with the technology to build up the right expertise.

“With Gigabit Connect, we are hiding the complexity, enabling plug-and-play fiber deployment and on-going management as with any normal fiber line,” she stated.

Nokia asserted Gigabit Connect will improve the business case for operators expanding fiber into MDUs and enable them to deliver gigabit broadband to more customers.

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Operators including AT&T and Frontier Communications deployed in recent years in an effort to make the most of their cable assets and smooth MDU upgrades. By February 2018, deployments passed around 3 million premises and 33 providers had deployed or planned to rollout the technology. But by mid-2019, momentum behind began to slow as operators started to increase spending on fiber.

Though fiber investments are now at an all-time high, it looks like will continue to proliferate. In its recent Broadband Access Report Five Year Forecast Report 2021 – 2025, Dell’Oro Group predicted the number of ports deployed would rise from 7.3 million at the end of 2021 to 16.2 million by the end of 2025.