Comcast to Ditch HFC for FTTH for 2 Gbps

Comcast's 2-Gbps Internet access offer, to be introduced in Atlanta and then other locations, is a watershed moment for the U.S. cable TV industry.

It appears that Comcast will use a fiber-to-the-home architecture to provide the service, ditching the hybrid fiber coax network for the first time in a mass consumer application.

That doesn't mean Comcast is abandoning HFC for most of its customers, at most locations. Much hinges on the price, and how many consumers are willing to pay what it will take to get the 2-Gbps service.  One suspects that is a rather low number. 

The new service will require replacing HFC connections with all-fiber access, and Comcast, as well as other cable TV operators, will resist "rip and replace" to the greatest extent possible. 

So, in a sense, Comcast might reasonably expect that a relatively small percentage of consumers actually will opt for the service, which will require overlaying new optical fiber drops from existing optical nodes. 

But it is a watershed moment, as Comcast would, for the first time, use FTTH as its consumer access network, at least for some customers, at some locations. 

Comcast has suggested it will  potentially reach 18 million of some 21 million homes, as 18 million Comcast consumers live within a third of a mile of an optical node. 

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