The THD Platform Winner at the FTTH Council Europe Innovation Awards!

The THD platform is the recipient of an Innovation Award for Business & Services Innovations, awarded by the FTTH Council Europe. The award was received Thursday, February 25 in Lisbon during the FTTH Conference 2010 by the business cluster Cap Digital, head of the THD platform resource cluster, a twelve public and private partner consortium. The FTTH Council Europe gave out the awards to innovation initiatives in fiber networks, including technological innovations, deployment and exploitation of networks, and commercial and service innovations. The prizes were attributed by a committee of experts, academic institutions, analysts and specialized journalists.

The FTTH Council Europe’s mission, in affiliation with the North-American FTTH Council, is to accelerate the adoption of direct access Fiber to the Home models by the main actors of high-speed broadband network technologies, including manufacturers and suppliers, telecommunication operators, regional authorities, etc. The international conference in Lisbon brought together 2,500 people, nearly 100 exhibitors, over 80 case studies and presentations by renowned speakers.

The opening session of the 2010 conference was entitled « FTTH/FTTB promises a larger, unlimited symmetrical bandwidth for end users. But what can businesses and end-users do with this bandwidth?” The question is one that digital content and service businesses are asking themselves, often still in a perspective of optimizing their applications to reach a maximum of people, including users further from main distribution frames, suffering from a much lower debit speed than subscribers in dense urban zones. For these businesses there is a niche market with exclusively fiber optic subscribers, and a real development opportunity for new contents and services which were previously unimaginable on copper-based networks. The question of new services for fiber subscribers, is also directly relevant to Internet Service Providers and triple-play operators. Orange, SFR and Free are amplifying their strategies for fiber optics, helped in less profitable zones by Le Grand Emprunt national funding program (2 billion Euros) geared at commercializing optical fiber specific services. Orange labs is using the THD platform to evaluate the commercial success and usage of a high speed broadband videophone service for the home.

During the conference, the FTTH Council Europe revealed Idate study statistics on European FTTH optical fiber penetration in 2009. Sweden, Norway, and Slovenia are still among the top five European countries, Lithuania in first place with an 18% FTTH penetration rate.  The four countries all have over 10% penetration rates, marking a significant advancement in Europe. France and Portugal have also made it in the ranking, in result of the development of optical fiber infrastructures and important marketing efforts to attract subscribers. Today there are 2,5 million subscribers in Europe (Russia has 3,5 million). Most of the subscribers (77%) are concentrated in seven countries: Sweden, Italy, France, Lithuania, Norway, Netherlands, and Denmark.

In light of the expected growth of fiber subscribers in Europe and especially in France, this top award given to the THD platform by the FTTH Council Europe encourages Cap Digital and its partners to develop and extend their platform’s activities in 2010. – Programme FTTH Conference 2010

The THD Platform is open experimental platform for high-speed broadband content and services and is operated by the business cluster Cap Digital. Consult the website of the platform (in French)

The THD experimental platform is an open platform for digital content and services businesses in the Ile-de-France region. This is a cooperative project piloted by the business cluster Cap Digital which brings together twelve public and private partners. The THD platform seeks to accelerate the prototyping and industrialization of online innovative services. It comes into play for the final stage of R&D, the technological adjustment of the interface or the ergonomics of the service, via experimentation in real utilization conditions with optical fiber users.

Twenty or so companies are already using the THD platform via 17 experimental digital services and content projects in domains such as e-learning, video games, serious games, 3D, HD video, videophones, search engines, IPTV, web 2.0…

About Cap Digital

Cap Digital is the French business cluster for Digital Content and Services in Paris and the Ile de France region. Cap Digital’s 500 members include innovative SMEs (430), major universities (50), research labs (170), and corporations (20). Since 2006, Cap Digital has received 850 projects, accredited 414 and received funding for 274 projects. These represent a total investment of 527M€ and 228M€ of public funds. In 2009, within the regional program “plan filière régionale” over 60 companies have benefited from development workshops and over 40 companies have participated in international prospective missions.