Differences Between FTTR and FTTH

FTTR is not only a single fiber into the home, but also a fiber network covering all rooms with FTTR equipment.
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Currently, FTTH is usually completed to the home by the operator’s fiber without including an indoor network.
The user needs to arrange the indoor network using wireless routers, PLCs, MOCA, and other technologies if needed.
FTTR is not only a single fiber into the home, but also a fiber network covering all rooms with FTTR equipment.

1. What is FTTR & FTTH

Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) and Fiber-to-the-Room (FTTR) are fiber optic communication technologies that provide high-speed internet connectivity.

They differ in their deployment and network topology, which impacts their performance and uses.

FTTH: Fiber-to-the-Home

FTTH involves installing an Optical Network Unit (ONU) at the premises of home or business users.

FTTH Solution

This solution is common in many households today. The typical FTTH network consists of four main components:

  1. Fiber Optic Cable: This connects to the Optical Line Terminal (OLT) upstream and provides an interface to connect user’s optical network devices downstream.
  2. Optical Network Unit (ONU): It converts optical signals into electrical signals according to specific protocols and interfaces. The ONU connects downstream to the router and wired network.
  3. Router: It reads the addresses in data packets and decides the transmission path, acting as the network manager. A router can connect multiple network devices.
  4. Ethernet Cables: This connects network devices. Common types include twisted pair and coaxial cables. Coaxial cables are easy to connect but difficult to maintain, while twisted pair cables are easier to maintain but more expensive.

FTTR: Fiber-to-the-Room

FTTR is a newer technology that replaces Ethernet cables with fiber optic cables, extending connections to every room.

FTTR Solution

Each room is equipped with an optical networking terminal, ensuring a full-house network coverage combined with dual-band Wi-Fi. The FTTR network consists of five main components:

  1. Main ONU: It connects upstream to the OLT via XG(S)-PON or 10G EPON, accommodating gigabit or 10-gigabit fiber optic connections to the premises. It provides interfaces downstream to connect the optical router.
  2. Sub ONU: It connects upstream to the main ONU via indoor fiber optic cable, providing internet services downstream to the end devices.
  3. Customized Optical Splitter: This device couples, branches, and distributes optical signals.
  4. Fiber Optic Cable: It allows long-distance transmission of optical signals. Note: When upgrading to FTTR using existing Ethernet cables, premises must use Cat5e or Cat6 cables. If using Cat5 cables, all eight wire cores must be used.
  5. Wall Outlet Box: It handles the access and port output of the duplex fiber optic cable, meets the bending radius requirements of the fiber optic cable, and provides safe protection for the fiber cores.

2. Why We Need Fiber To The Room

The ITU-T GSTP-FTTR document details the applications and requirements for FTTR, with indoor high-quality Wi-Fi networking requirements ranking first.

Wi-Fi technology has been extended to a wide range of products, including computers, PADs, smartphones, TVs and smart speakers.

Wi-Fi is an essential part of the home network and people are increasingly relying on Wi-Fi connectivity to support their internet connection needs.

In FTTH, after optical access, we can provide a network for WI-FI terminals in two ways:

  • the Ethernet port of the ONU
  • Integration of Wi-Fi functionality into a Wi-Fi enabled ONU

Since the release of the Wi-Fi standard IEEE 802.11a in 1997, Wi-Fi technology has continue to evolve and update with ever increasing transmission rates.

Currently, Wi-Fi6 technology supports up to 9.6 gigabits per second. The even higher speed Wi-Fi7 (802.11be) standard is also being work on.

It is difficult for a single router to cover the whole house with a wireless Wi-Fi signal due to:

● The diversity of house types;

● The attenuation of wireless signals by space and walls.

This is why the Wi-Fi Alliance introduces as the EasyMesh solution.

In this solution, multiple Wi-Fi access points (APs) are formed into a local area network (LAN).

Indoor wireless networks in large houses can achieve by networking multiple EasyMesh-enabled wireless routers.
However, as the mesh routers locate in different rooms, the 5GHz signal is highly attenuated.
The installation point of the router does not guarantee the quality of the direct wireless connection between the router and the gateway.

Why We Need Fiber To The Room

When you enjoy future home network services such as.

  • Video calls
  • Video conferencing
  • HD video (8k)
  • Augmented Reality / Virtual Reality (AR / VR)
  • Holograms

In this case, you want to be able to sit or move freely without any inconvenience in terms of service delays, lost connections, etc.

Therefore, FTTR technology is necessary to form such a mesh network with high connection data rates and reliable roaming.

It has sufficient capacity for fiber optic backhaul links compared to wireless or UTP.

3. Comparing FTTH and FTTR Solutions

When it comes to providing high-speed internet connectivity, both Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) and Fiber-to-the-Room (FTTR) are viable options.

However, as technology advances, FTTR is proving to be a step ahead in delivering true gigabit bandwidth directly to the room, offering significant advantages over traditional network technologies and even FTTH.

The Power of FTTR

With FTTR, the main Optical Network Unit (ONU) connects upstream via XGSPON or 10G EPON, supporting a maximum rate of 10Gbps.

The sub ONUs deliver connection to the room via fiber, offering Gigabit Ethernet ports and Wi-Fi 6. This structure sidesteps the performance degradation caused by Wi-Fi signals passing through walls.

With Wi-Fi 6 interface rates that can exceed gigabits, FTTR truly delivers gigabit bandwidth to the room.

Optical fiber, the backbone of FTTR, offers several advantages. It is flexible, immune to electromagnetic interference, and resistant to oxidation and corrosion.

With a lifetime of up to 30 years, a single deployment can continue to service users for decades.

Moreover, its bandwidth can continue to grow to over 100Gpbs, future-proofing your network to meet the demands of high bandwidth services.

The Future of Connectivity

FTTR is an evolution of the FTTH-based home network, extending its reach further into the premises.

The network and services it supports complement each other, enhancing the quality and reach of both.

As of now, FTTR stands as one of the optimal solutions for high-demand services such as HD video, VR/AR and cloud gaming.

Partner with Fibconet for FTTR Solutions

At Fibconet, we specialize in providing cutting-edge FTTR solutions to meet your connectivity needs. As technology evolves, so do we.

Our commitment to staying at the forefront of network solutions ensures that you are always equipped with the best. Contact Fibconet today, and let’s work together to future-proof your network.

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