Berne, 16 April 2012
In April, Swisscom is starting work on expanding the high-speed fibre-optic network in Brig. Planning is also under way for expansion in Gampel-Bratsch. These activities are being carried out within the framework of the planned Upper Valais construction partnership agreement. As part of the agreement, the first step will involve connecting around 16,000 homes and businesses to the fibre-optic network (FTTH) by 2015. Swiscom is commencing with expansion in Brig-Glis and will introduce the fibre-optic connections as soon as the agreement has been signed. This is set to be the case in summer 2012.
In collaboration with the "Regions- und Wirtschaftszentrum Oberwallis" (Upper Valais regional centre for business, RWO), the Upper Valais interest group for fibre-optic, and 72 Upper Valais communities, Swisscom's first step will be to connect around 16,000 homes and businesses in the region to the fibre-optic network. In the coming weeks, expansion will commence in Brig-Glis. The cooperation partners have also begun planning expansion in Gampel-Bratsch. The cooperation partners will define jointly in which further communities homes and businesses will be connected to the fibre-optic network.
Swisscom has already contacted home-owners in Brig to draw up contracts governing connection of the buildings to the fibre-optic network and the laying of the cables to the homes. Construction work is to start at the end of April 2012. Swisscom will lay four fibres for every home and business. The constructed fibre-optic connections will be introduced into the cooperation as soon as the partnership agreement has been signed.
Around CHF 40 million is being invested in the first expansion phase of the new fibre-optic network in Upper Valais. Swisscom is contributing between 50% and 60% of the required investment.
Fibre is rolled out to a new home or business in Switzerland roughly every two minutes. By the end of 2011, Swisscom and its cooperation partners had connected some 364,000 homes and businesses by means of fibre-optic cables running into the basement. This figure is set to rise to around a million by the end of 2015 – one-third of all households. Today, around 10% of all Swiss homes are connected.