What is your goal with the FTTH council?
“We would like to get one hundred percent fiber connectivity. Of course that's going to take time. But countries like Spain and France are already investing heavily in fiber to the home. France is targeting to connect about two million homes per year to fiber. Yet even at that rate it will take 12 years to get full ubiquity. A lot depends on the level of government support. Unfortunately many governments cannot visualize the applications fiber is going to enable, so they think there's no justification in making the investment. But it's just like investing in an anti-smoking campaign. You don't realize the benefits tomorrow, but you know that if you don’t invest, you’re likely to face serious health issues ten years down the line that will place massive strains on future health care resources. The savings that investing in fiber will bring to the taxpayer into future are huge.”
How is The Netherlands doing in this respect?
“You are doing quite well. One of the challenges that you have here, which Spain and France did not have, is that for competing technologies like twisted pair copper and coax cables you already have quite high capacities. When you can deliver 100 MB services to subscribers over copper, many customers are not going to hit the limit of that in the next couple of years. So a lot of people think that what they have is good enough. That is why government needs to get behind fiber and promote the adoption. We cannot depend on end users to imagine the applications they will use in five to ten years time.”
Do you actually have a fiber connection in your home?
“Unfortunately not. I'm on cable. To be fair, I do get 300 MB capacity, so I get a taste of what could be possible. But of course I would much prefer to be on fiber.”