OTE starts FTTH investment in Greece

OTE Group, a telecom operator in Greece, announced Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) Internet plans.
OTE CEO Michael Tsamaz
The coverage of FTTH, which provides a direct fiber optic connection to the user’s premises, is now below 1 percent in the country.

OTE said its FTTH broadband coverage will grow to about 25 percent of the population by 2022, upgrading internet speeds to up to 1 Gbps, which is about five times faster than up to 200 Mbps at present.

OTE has spent some 2 billion euros or $2.34 billion in the last six years developing a 43,000-km fiber optic network, the country’s largest, offering 3 million households and businesses access to internet speeds of up to 200 Mbps, Reuters reported.

“Today, we are bringing optic fiber to the home’s socket. Today, we are making a gigabit society in our country come true,” OTE Chief Executive Michael Tsamaz told an event, marking the first FTTH connection.

OTE, which is 45 percent owned and managed by Deutsche Telekom, aims to expand the FTTH network to about 150,000 households out of about 4 million by the end of 2019, mainly in big cities, and gradually reach 1 million households by 2022.

The government is offering a 360 euro subsidy to low-income households to connect to superfast broadband services for two years as part of a 700 million euro scheme to boost internet connectivity across the country under an EU policy to turn Europe into a gigabit society by 2025.

“Through this action and with our decision to siphon in state money immediately to support this kind of investments, we will be able to overshoot our targets for the gigabit society before 2025,” Digital Policy Minister Nikos Pappas said.