The availability of optical fiber connectivity to large and medium size commercial buildings in the U.S. jumped to 54.8 percent in 2017, based on latest research from Vertical Systems Group.
As a result, the U.S. fiber gap has dropped to less than fifty percent (45.2 percent) for the first time. This annual benchmark quantifies the scope of fiber lit buildings in the U.S. with 20 or more employees. Encompassing more than 2 million individual business establishments, this base of commercial buildings maps directly to the addressable market for higher speed carrier Ethernet, cloud, data center, hybrid VPN and emerging SDN-enabled services.
“More commercial U.S. buildings were newly lit with fiber during 2017 than in any other year since we initiated this research in 2004. The number of net new fiber-lit buildings increased across every building size segment, and most substantially for medium size sites,” said Rosemary Cochran, principal of Vertical Systems Group. “Deployments will continue to accelerate, because fiber is both a strategic asset for delivery of wireline business services, as well as a necessity for enabling 5G.”
For the analysis, a fiber-lit building is defined as a commercial site or data center that has on-net optical fiber connectivity to a network provider’s infrastructure, plus active service termination equipment onsite. Excluded from the analysis are standalone cell towers, small cells not located in fiber-lit buildings, near-net buildings, buildings classified as coiled at curb or coiled in building, HFC-connected buildings, carrier central offices, residential buildings, and private or dark-fiber installations.