Nokia and American Tower introduce SDN virtualisation to redefine fibre broadband deployment

Via Nokia

Oct 20, 2022

  • American Tower deploys Altiplano Open Access solution in its Argentinian fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) network.
  • Solution enables American Tower to offer vastly enhanced operational autonomy to virtual network operators.
  • ‘Network-as-a Service’ business model opens up new opportunities for wholesalers to enter markets as neutral hosts.

Espoo, Finland – Nokia today announced it has deployed its Altiplano Open Access solution for American Towers fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) infrastructure in ArgentinaThe network controller solution uses virtualization to share network resources as slices of a physical networkenabling the wholesaling of fiber access on a Network-as-a-Service (NaaS) basis. American Tower has already onboarded three virtual network operator tenants in the country.

As one of the world’s largest real estate investment trusts and one of the first movers investing in neutral host network infrastructure for operators, American Tower‘s approximately 220,000 communications site portfolio includes fiber networks in select geographies. The new FTTH network in Argentina, with Nokia as the sole supplier, reaches close to a million homes passed.

The neutral host model, where investors build networks and wholesale capacity to tenant operators, is well established in mobile networks and is now a growing proportion of the fiber market.

In a study for Nokia, Arthur D. Little found almost one third of telecom sector deals in the Americas and Europe during the past decade were with fiber investment companies, with up to 3x higher profit for neutral host deals vs traditional telcos.

With traditional fiber wholesale solutions, service innovation and market differentiation is difficult for tenant operators due to the rigid design, lack of network visibility and limited control in service delivery. Nokia’s Altiplano Open Access solution, an add-on to its Altiplano software suite, enables a more flexible service design tailored to the needs of both large and small operator tenants.

Paul Choiseul, Vice President of Innovation Transport and Networking - OCTO at American Tower, said: “Open Fiber to the home networks are growing rapidly and we’re delighted to be partnering with Nokia to help our network tenants deliver high speed broadband services and network connectivity to their residential and business customers in Argentina. With Nokia’s collaboration, we are leveraging the Altiplano SDAN Domain Controller to enhance our neutral host Network-as-a-service (NaaS) platform, allowing enhanced automation and delivering autonomy of operation to our virtual operators. Through the use of industry-standard APIs, Altiplano allows us to grant virtual network operators a “slice” of our network they can operate in a similar fashion as they would operate their own infrastructure, so they can offer differentiated wholesale products to address the unique needs of their customers and the services they require.”

Sandy Motley, President, Fixed Networks at Nokia, said: “Neutral host business models lower the cost of fiber deployments and attract new sources of capital, driving the FTTH market to enter underserved areas. The Nokia Altiplano Open Access solution is uniquely built to support infrastructure builders with flexible network sharing options, while the virtual network operators get the customized capabilities they need to support their business and improve subscriber experience.”

Nokia Professional Services is supporting the Altiplano integration in American Tower’s cloud and network environment. Professional Services support also makes sure American Tower and its tenants’ existing operation and support systems can be reused for a fast implementation.

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