Bart S wrote:
With GPON it is possible. Using older technologies and the typical BSNL exchange, certainly not possible without a huge capital outlay. This could be a good thing where we leapfrog/bypass several generations of older tech, like the move directly to cellular.
Landlines as a concept are dead. Only BSNL (and their typical fuddy-duddy loyal customers) are interested in those. The way forward is a broadband data circuit (likely over GPON which is fiber optic (FTTH) but quite cost effective) and you can chose to have a voice number as an option (this works over VoIP on the data circuit).
But FTTH is a land line, its just not copper telephone wires. FTTH or cable broadband is definitely possible in dense urban settings.
Yes, but you are missing my point, and it's not just for dense urban settings (though that is where folks like Airtel etc are currently using it). You try to deploy a traditional landline that works via copper cabling, it is impossible at that scale and with that budget because you are relying on a bunch of legacy technologies like telecom switches + DSLAMs that are super expensive to buy, provision and maintain. You are trying to build a legacy TDM network and provision IP over it. Besides they can only ration tiny amounts of bandwidth.
The beauty of GPON (used for most FTTH) is the 'P' in the acronym that stands for Passive. You don't need active equipment except at the exchange, it can deploy for long distances and makes very efficient use of fiber by multiplexing different wavelengths (for each customer) over a single wire. Opens up a lot of possibilities for rural areas. And at the volumes that service providers operate at, fiber is actually cheaper than copper when all costs are considered. All you need is some IP network coming into a mini-exchange which can actually be a cellular base station etc (and can be whitebox equipment for 80% of the requirement) and then the GPON equipment at the head-end. Also, given the high bandwidth per customer (1Gbps), for many villages you can probably get by with pulling a single fiber to the village and using a local wireless network for the last mile (though given the cost of maintaining active equipment it is probably cheaper to just extend the PON to each home via splitters and minimal active equipment like a switch). With 5G (and even 3G/4G small-cell tech) you can even leverage that to provide cellular connectivity to the village. Plus it is fully IP end to end, no TDM, so huge improvement in bandwidth and huge reduction in costs.
So the overall point being, that if we commit to fully IP based GPON at a massive scale (similar to what Reliance did with an all-LTE, all-IP network) we can actually leapfrog the bottleneck of legacy landlines and have cutting edge and high speed wired connectivity provisioned economically, at a massive scale. And given that this would leapfrog the connectivity available in much of rural Europe/America currently, it has it's own implications for unleashing economic growth and productivity.