BERLIN -- Broadband World Forum -- To support the European Community's vision of a Gigabit Society, ZTE plans to invest in fiber and 5G across key German markets, mirroring a strategy it's already implemented in other countries within the continent.
Speaking at a press briefing during Broadband World Forum (BBWF) 2017 in Berlin, ZTE's Senior Vice President Xiao Ming shared the vendor's broadband strategy for Europe, and in particular for Germany.
As a global provider of technologies for building gigabit access networks, ZTE is heavily investing in the expansion of fiber optics and the expansion of 5G technology, which requires a fiber-based infrastructure. Annually, ZTE invests €250 million ($290 million) in global 5G research and development, according to the vendor.
From Fiber to 5G
Xiao Ming, senior vice president at ZTE, discusses the vendor's European investment plans.
"In the European market," Ming said, "the construction of 5G infrastructures is one of the long-term core objectives of ZTE. We are aiming to install the first commercial deployments of 5G in Europe by the third quarter of 2018, and to achieve a comprehensive market maturity by the first quarter of 2019."
Digitization in Germany has rapidly intensified and gained momentum in the last few months.
"Leading organizations all point out that the need for a high-performance broadband infrastructure is indispensable for the future economic success of Germany," he said, "and that this future infrastructure must consist of a gigabit access network made of fiber."
ZTE's plans to make targeted investments in key markets in Germany (where ZTE has been active since 2005), establishing itself as a reliable partner in the German telecommunications industry. Between 2014 and 2015 alone, ZTE invested more than €80 million ($93 million) in Germany, the company noted.
In addition, ZTE plans to expand its German broadband business to regional operators, city carriers and urban centers. This summer, ZTE inked a partnership agreement for GPON and Gfast technologies with communications and Internet service provider NetCologne.
With the support of ZTE, NetCologne will deliver access for up to 450,000 households in Germany in coming months, said Ming. The vendor predicts a steady growth in mobile devices and enterprise solutions as well as increased investment in Europe, a strategic market for ZTE, he said.
"We will continue developing new solutions and technologies in the future for supporting partners and customers in Europe," Ming added.
The German strategy comes after ZTE's broadband success in southern Europe with partners Orange Spain, where it's deploying fiber optic networks in Spain, and open fiber in Italy with Telecom Italia.
"We are committed to supporting the construction of wide-coverage gigabit networks by 2025," said Ming.
— Susan Fourtané, science and technology journalist.