Optical fiber: this card allows you to know the status of the network deployment near you

An interactive map shows, city by city, the status of fiber optic deployment. Useful to know if it will soon be possible to take out a very high speed subscription with Orange, Free, SFR or Bouygues Telecom. Or find out if you are doomed to stay on ADSL for several more years.

10.4 million. This is the number of fiber optic subscriptions recorded by the telecoms regulator as of December 31, 2020. The year of the global pandemic was very dynamic, with 3.3 million additional accesses in twelve months. If we include the other very high-speed packages, France has 14.7 million accesses of this type – that’s almost half of all Internet subscriptions in France.

In its progress report of March 4, the telecoms regulatory authority explains that the growth dynamic in the number of very high-speed subscriptions is accompanied by a faster decline in the number of high-speed subscriptions: it was 2.5 million during the year 2020 against 1.7 million a year before. However, there were still 16 million low, medium or high speed subscriptions at the end of 2020.

In theory, France will be fully connected by optical fiber (FTTH) in 2025. This is what the France Very High Speed ​​plan provides. If concerns persist about the relevance and cost of this plan – some consider, for example, that in certain very rural areas, it is better to cover the last kilometers in 4G or 5G – this strategy is continuing. And it is possible to follow its evolution.

A map to follow the arrival of optical fiber

An example of a view showing the deployment around La Rochelle (with data from 2018).

The telecoms regulator indeed offers on its website an interactive map that allows you to view, municipality by municipality, the state of progress of very high-speed fiber optic coverage. The map was last updated on March 25, 2021, with data dated December 31, 2020. The next update is scheduled for early June, with data for the first quarter.

By clicking on a town, detailed coverage information is provided by a color code reflecting a degree of percentage of coverage, but also the number of premises that can be connected by fiber optic to the home (FTTH, for Fiber to the Home), the department, the infrastructure operator and the regulatory area (very dense areas, less dense areas).

The regulator card includes an advanced mode which more explicitly displays the name of the infrastructure operator who is on the spot (Orange, SFR, Bouygues Telecom or Free, if it is a public initiative network, etc. .), or if there are several. For areas that are not yet connected, the deployment intentions formulated by one or more private operators are indicated, if applicable.

A provisional timetable for the deployment of optical fiber

There is also a provisional view option for fiber deployments, which is based on information obtained by the National Agency for Territorial Cohesion, but also that collected by Arcep. This display has its own update schedule: the last update dates back to January 2021. It may however be incomplete, because it depends on the information that has been reported.

In this mode, the map is adorned with a special color palette indicating the situation: the work is in progress or completed, the work begins in 2021 or later (2022 or 2023 or beyond – the France Très Haut plan Debit to be completed by 2025 at the latest). For some municipalities, the information is not available. On average, the duration of the work ranges from one to one and a half years.

The provision of provisional information for deployments scheduled but which have not yet started dates back to March 2019. It gives an idea to the inhabitants but also to the elected officials of the municipalities as to the estimated time of arrival of the optical fiber, at the level of the territory. However, it is not possible to have a very fine granularity, with a view by building.

Forecast view Map of ftth fiber deployments
The provisional timetable for optical fiber for the city of Bondoufle (with data for 2019)

Situation address by address of the fiber optic state

Previously, the Electronic Communications and Postal Regulatory Authority added another very practical display to know the status of the fiber. at building level – which is practical to know if it is the right moment to turn to your trustee and ask what are the next steps of connection (it is still necessary to bring the fiber to the home – FTTH).

By zooming in enough, the map stops showing a uniform color over an area and instead shows a myriad of dots of different colors (light gray, dark gray, yellow, blue and green). These points reflect the degree of progress of the connection by postal address (building or house): studies carried out, scheduled, connectable on request, being deployed, or deployed (connectable).

Map of fiber deployments (FttH) to the building
The dots represent the situation of the different buildings: are they connected or not to optical fiber, and if not, where are we? // Source: Arcep

Regular updates on the state of the optical fiber

The existence of this card gives the public and the municipalities clear and accessible indicators, very practical to have a rough idea of ​​the arrival of very high speed in the municipality, but also by building. ” This is to give consumers, businesses and communities more visibility on current networks and on the arrival of new networks. », Explains the Regulatory Authority for Electronic Communications and Posts.

The fiber optic card was born in the mid-2010s and has benefited from developments. In 2018, the view by building was therefore added to more precisely monitor the progress of deployments. A year later, forecasts for the deployment of fiber optic networks were incorporated. And alongside these options, the data that is displayed on the screen is updated to reflect the situation on the ground.

(updated March 29 to reflect the latest map update)

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Article originally published on August 06, 2018 and updated on September 26, 2021

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