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Broadband Forum, Fiber Broadband Association team to drive broadband service delivery

Agreement between trade bodies in fibre and broadband industries to combine advocacy, industry research, workforce development and educational experience with technical standards and interoperability expertise

The communications industry’s open standards development organisation, Broadband Forum, has signed an agreement in principle with the Fiber Broadband Association to advance the communications industry forward with what it calls “future-proof”, high-capacity, low-latency fibre broadband capabilities that will enable the metaverse and beyond.

Noting that the associations have a common focus of developing and educating the broadband industry on best practices, the agreement will combine the Fiber Broadband Association’s background and expertise in fibre advocacy, research, education, and member and community resources with Broadband Forum’s technical background in best practices, interoperability, certification and standards.

The Fiber Broadband Association was set up to represent the complete fibre ecosystem of service providers, manufacturers, industry experts and deployment specialists in the advancement of fibre broadband deployments.

The organisation helps providers, communities and policy makers make informed decisions about how, where and why they should build better fibre broadband networks. Its ongoing work includes best practices for fibre-based network operator deployments and funding, complementing Broadband Forum’s technical standards efforts.

Broadband Forum said it will use the new relationship by increasing awareness of its progress in technology, standards and certification work.

It will also increase awareness and education among Tier 1, 2 and 3 operators, and suppliers of its stated mission to advance broadband innovation and the benefits of interoperability.

In 2022, the forum launched a project that it said would “revolutionise” communications providers’ business plans, introducing an app-enabled services gateway project from the communications industry’s open standards development organisation to help service providers with the effective deployment, activation and management of third-party applications. These include parental controls, Wi-Fi analytics, streaming services and security services to consumers on a centralised internet gateway device or other customer premises equipment.

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The agreement will give the Fiber Broadband Association’s Technology Committee leadership team increased visibility of Broadband Forum’s work across all areas of fibre broadband service delivery from inside the building, across the fibre access network to the cloud. It will also give the Fiber Broadband Association the opportunity to contribute to current and future specification work and represent the needs of fibre broadband providers in the Broadband Forum community in the Americas.

“We are pleased to sign an agreement in principle with the Fiber Broadband Association and we look forward to its members’ engagement and contributions,” said Broadband Forum managing director Ken Ko.

“The largest operators have traditionally contributed the most to industry standards, but now, operators of all sizes have a level playing field,” he said. “The Fiber Broadband Association represents the full fibre ecosystem, with 51% of its members being network operators and the other half representing the supply side of the industry, with the fibre manufacturers, equipment vendors, engineering consultants and deployment specialists, so its value cannot be overstated.”

Fiber Broadband Association president and CEO Gary Bolton added: “In an effort to achieve true progress, we recognise it takes a collaborative engagement across the entire broadband industry, and that is why we have formed alliances with some of the most impactful broadband organisations across the globe.

“Our agreement with Broadband Forum is an exciting next step in our journey to advance fibre deployments across the Americas and finally connect every community to standardised, ubiquitous, high-speed broadband services,” he said.

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