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Belgacom selects Alcatel-Lucentís VDSL2 fiber-to-the-node solution


Belgacom (Euronext Brussels: BELG), the Belgian incumbent operator, today announced that they have selected Alcatel-Lucent (Paris and NYSE: ALU) as supplier for the rollout of their fiber-to-the-node VDSL2 network. This network upgrade will enable Belgacom to offer full triple play services, including multiple IPTV channels on multiple TV sets simultaneously and High Definition Television (HDTV) to more than 60% of the Belgian households in spring 2008.

This project leverages the unsurpassed high density and bandwidth of Alcatel-Lucentís next generation VDSL2 solutions based on its industry leading ISAM (Intelligent Services Access Manager) platform. The broadband access network seamlessly integrates with the already operational IP aggregation network supplied by Alcatel-Lucent and based on its 7450 ESS and 7750 SR service router products.

Deploying VDSL2 is part of Belgacomís Broadway infrastructure project to bring fiber down to the street cabinet level on a national scale. After successfully passing the integration phases, it has now reached the final lab testing stages in parallel with the necessary IT integration. The large-scale rollout throughout Belgium will cover more than 14,000 nodes.

While Belgacom is already today offering digital TV to 80% of Belgian households, with a large segment of the population enjoying multiple streams of standard definition television, the superior bandwidth of VDSL2 will transition Belgacomís TV offering into the High Definition Television (HDTV) era.

Scott Alcott, Executive Vice President of Belgacomís Service Delivery Engine stated: ďAt the end of June 2007, we had already registered more than 191,000 IPTV users, who are being offered this service over ADSL2+ and VDSL1 technology. To further expand our customer base and introduce HDTV on a large scale, we need to bring our high-bandwidth network closer to the end-user. In our transition to the IP world, Alcatel-Lucentís VDSL2 solution is fundamental to further expand our Belgacom TV service and Internet applications, both in terms of services offered and customers reached.Ē

ĒBelgacomís choice for a fiber-to-the-node VDSL2 network is a logical next stepĒ, said Michel Rahier, President of Alcatel-Lucentís carrier business activity. ďIt reuses the existing copper infrastructure to the fullest and brings fiber up to that point in the network that makes the most sense economically for Belgacom. The solution will enable Belgacom to offer much higher bandwidths and top quality TV services to a large subscriber base,Ē concluded Rahier.

Under the terms of the contract, Alcatel-Lucent will be supplying its 7302 Intelligent Services Access Manager (ISAM) for central office deployment and its 7330 Intelligent Services Access Manager (ISAM) fiber-to-the-node (FTTN) system with the 7356 Remote Expansion Module, all of which will be managed by the highly scalable, multi-technology 5523 AWS Element Management System. Alcatel-Lucent also provides Belgacom with a scalable and service oriented IP aggregation network, based on its 7450 ESS and 7750 SR service router products now largely deployed and operational over most of the Belgacom central offices.

Alcatel-Lucent remains the uncontested market leader in broadband access with more than 142 million DSL lines shipped to date, and a cumulative DSL market share of 41%, more than three times that of its nearest competitor.


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