Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Report: AT&T reduces investment in Project Lightspeed, concentrates spending on existing U-Verse deployments

While AT&T is making its triple play U-Verse its core wireline focus, at the same time it's throttling back investment in Project Lightspeed, the VDSL-based fiber to the node (FTTN) infrastruce that supports U-Verse.

Instead, spending is being redirected to selling and supporting customers in the limited areas where U-Verse has been deployed, writes Bob Wallace in xchange:

AT&T recently announced it is cutting capital spending by hundreds of millions, but didn’t disclose specifically how that will affect its FTTx plans. AT&T said roughly a year ago that all new builds would use an FTTN architecture, but with these cuts in capital spending more folks likely will have to get by with copper links. However, AT&T is hiring big for U-verse in areas including customer service and call centers, help desk staff and technicians to install the service. That plays toward customer retention and easy adds.

“We know the capex slowdown will impact how many homes AT&T can pass with U-verse throughout 2008 and early 2009,” said Jeff Heynen, directing analyst for IPTV and Next Gen BSS/OSS for Infonetics Research. “However, right now the priority is signing up subscribers in the areas where they do pass the majority of homes. Their subscriber ramp continues to get better, as it should.”

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