Germany’s biggest telco has indicated plans to introduce vectoring technology on its copper network, enabling it to offer much higher broadband speeds without the heavy investments associated with fibre.
Bloomberg quotes Niek Jan van Damme, head of Deutsche Telekom’s domestic unit, as saying that he is still evaluating the cost of the project, and hopes to get regulatory clearance within six months.
Said clearance is however by no means certain – German regulators have previously stipulated that DT must share its copper network with other companies, which would not be possible in areas where the telco introduces vectoring.
Vectoring is estimated by Deutsche Telekom to double download speeds and quadruple upload speeds. Company CEO Rene Obermann has previously indicated that he wishes to offer vectored DSL services to 24mn customers within the next four years.
While fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) networks do exist in Germany, they have not been deployed with the alacrity shown in other markets: DT has built limited fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) networks in around fifty cities, and promised to connect up to 160,000 households in ten cities across the country with FTTH last year.
The company continues to be troubled by stalled growth at home however, which partly explains its reticence: domestic revenues fell 1.3% annually in the third quarter of this year, while adjusted EBITDA fell 2.5% to €2.4bn.