Understanding the FTTx Network


FTTx technology plays an important role in providing higher bandwidth for a global network. And FTTx (fiber to the x) architecture is a typical example of substituting copper by fiber in high data rate traffic. According to the different termination places, the common FTTx architectures include FTTH, FTTB, FTTP, FTTC, and FTTN. This article will introduce these architectures respectively.

What is FTTx Network?

FTTx also called as fiber to the x, is a collective term for any broadband network architecture using optical fiber to provide all or part of the local loop used for last mile telecommunications.

Fiber to the home technology

Different FTTx Architectures

FTTP: fiber-to-the-premises, is a loosely used term, which can encompass both FTTH and FTTB or sometimes is used a particular fiber network that includes both homes and businesses. It depends on how the context is used and a specific location of where the fiber terminates. FTTP can offer higher bandwidth than any other broadband services, so operators usually use this technology to provide triple-play services.

FTTH: as indicated by the name fiber-to-the-home, fiber from the central office reaches the boundary of the living space, such as a box on the outside wall of a home. Once at the subscriber’s living or working space, the signal may be conveyed throughout the space using any means, such as twisted pair, coaxial pair, wireless, power line communication, or optical fiber. Passive optical networks (PONs) and point-to-point Ethernet are architectures that deliver triple-play services over FTTH networks directly from an operator’s central office.

FTTB (fiber to the building) — Fiber terminates at the boundary of the building. A fiber cable in FTTB installation goes to a point on shared property and the other cabling provides the connection to single homes, offices or other spaces. FTTB applications often use active or passive optical networks to distribute signals over a shared fiber optic cable to individual households of offices.

FTTC( fiber-to-the-curb or -cabinet), is a telecommunication system where fiber optic cables run directly to a platform near homes or any business environment and serve several customers. Each of these customers has a connection to this platform via coaxial cable or twisted pair. The term “curb” is an abstraction and just as easily means a pole-mounted device or communications closet or shed. Typically any system terminating fiber within 1000 ft (300 m) of the customer premises equipment would be described as FTTC. A perfect deployment example of FTTC is a DLC/NGDLC (digital loop carrier) which provides phone service.

FTTN (fiber to the node) — Fiber terminates in a street cabinet, which may be miles away from the customer premises, with the final connections being copper. One of the main benefits of FTTN is the ability to deliver data over more efficient fiber optic lines, rather than other fiber optic lines with the greater speed restriction


The advent of the FTTx network is of great significance for people around the world. As it has a higher speed, costs less, and carries more capacity than twisted pair conductor or coaxial cables. 

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