Fibre-optic technology

Successful field testing of latest fibre-optic technology

Data networks have indisputably become part of the most important infrastructure of society. Entire business models and value chains are based on digital solutions that require high-performance networks. That is why Swisscom is constantly investing in the expansion of its networks and is among the world leaders in rolling out the latest developments, such as 50G PON fibre-optic technology. Following successful laboratory testing in the autumn of 2020, Swisscom has now become the world’s first TSP to put the new technology into operation for test purposes in the live network of a Swiss municipality.

Man with short, black hair wearing a green T-shirt in front of a big computer, fiddling with an Internet cable.

The Swisscom network is ready for the latest possibilities of digital Switzerland. Companies are taking advantage of the digital possibilities offered by networked systems and devices to open up new business areas or increase the efficiency of their production chains. With its continued willingness to invest around CHF 1.6 billion annually in the expansion of its IT and networks, Swisscom is making a key contribution to Switzerland as a business location. True to its claim of being a world leader in bringing the latest technologies to its customers, the company has, in recent years, been at the forefront of rolling out such new developments as in the fixed network or 5G in the mobile network.

Swisscom has now demonstrated the next stage of technological development in the fibre-optic network. As early as 2020, Swisscom was the first telecommunications company in the world to test 50G PON fibre-optic technology in the laboratory. The technology has now been successfully put into operation for testing purposes in the live network of a Swiss municipality – another world first.

New possibilities for business customers' future broadband connections

The theoretically possible bandwidth of up to 50 Gbit/s is not the primary benefit of 50G PON fibre-optic technology – after all, today’s fibre technologies offer sufficient capacity for many years to come. 50G-PON will lead to a new kind of flexibility in high-speed connectivity, chiefly for business customers, paving the way for additional security service features or connection service attributes. For example, the technology significantly reduces latency compared to today’s standards, and guaranteed transmission speeds can be defined by network slicing. These are just a few examples that, thanks to 50G-PON, can be included in considerations for new products and services aligned to business customer requirements in the coming years.

Swisscom plans to introduce the technology by 2025 at the latest. The network architecture is no cause for concern as PON technologies can be used in both point-to-point and point-to-multipoint networks. The passive splitter is placed in a point-to-point network rather than in the cable conduit at the control centre.

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