STATFlash: U.S. Business Fiber Availability Reaches 54.8%

Fiber Gap drops below fifty percent for the first time; More buildings lit with fiber in 2017 than in any prior year

BOSTON, MA, APRIL 5, 2018 – The availability of optical fiber connectivity to large and medium size commercial buildings in the U.S. jumped to 54.8% 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%) for the first time. This annual benchmark quantifies the scope of fiber lit buildings in the U.S. with twenty or more employees. Encompassing more than two 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 this 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 this 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.

Detailed U.S. Fiber availability analysis is available now exclusively to ENS Research Programs subscribers.  @Fiber Plus Research Topics include detailed fiber statistics for 2017, with historical data by year starting in 2004. Research content additionally covers U.S. fiber trends, fiber penetration by customer segment (Large Enterprise and SMB) and building size segment (20-50 employees, 51-100 employees, 101-250 employees, >250 employees), U.S. Fiber Lit Building penetration rates and building counts by fiber provider, U.S. Fiber Lit Buildings LEADERBOARDs, profiles of top fiber providers, directory of M&A activity, fiber lit building taxonomies and more.

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