Report: CenturyLink to deliver 100 Mbps VDSL2 service

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CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL) may not have plans to take the aggressive road of its fellow ILEC Verizon (NYSE: VZ) to wire up every home with a Fiber to the Premises (FTTP) connection, but it appears that it wants to serve up a 100 Mbps service over that existing copper line.

Although some of CenturyLink's DSL customers can get their higher speed 25 and 40 Mbps speeds, which are provided only in select CenturyLink and former Qwest markets, the majority of its users can get speeds between 1.5 to 6 Mbps.

Stewart Ewing, EVP and CFO of CenturyLink, said during the 22nd Citi Entertainment, Media and Telecommunications Conference in January that 20 percent of CenturyLink's total customer base can get 20 Mbps or higher and over half can get 10 Mbps or higher, and two-thirds can get access to 6 Mbps speeds or higher.   

As reported at Broadband DSL Reports, the service provider has listed a number of new VDSL2 speed tiers that the service provider has not formally announced yet.  

Customers, according to this list, will be able to choose speeds that scale from their existing 1.5 Mbps tier up to a 100 Mbps tier that leverages VDSL2 with copper pair bonding. Anonymous sources told Broadband DSL Reports that the service provider is conducting pair bonding tests in the former Qwest Denver territory with plans to take into other markets at a later date.

Under the new speed regime, CenturyLink will complement the existing speed tiers with three higher speed offerings: 60, 80 and 100 Mbps. Given the distance limitations of existing copper, actual speeds will vary by how far a home is from the nearest central office (CO) or remote terminal (RT). Although pricing for the new services depend on what bundle a customer chooses, on a standalone basis customers would pay $110, $130 and $150 a month, respectively for the 60, 80, and 100 Mbps service.

While not specifying any speeds or timeline, Ewing said that they will "continue the Fiber to the Node expansion in 2012." In addition to FTTN, the service provider plans to bring its fledgling Prism IPTV service into at least one or two existing Qwest markets sometime this year.

Stephanie Meisse, a CenturyLink spokeswoman said that the service provider is investigating the merits of bonded ADSL and VDSL2 technology.

"We are currently evaluating markets where it makes sense to deploy bonded VDSL and ADSL technology," she said in an e-mail to FierceTelecom. "We have not finalized the locations yet or exactly what speeds we will offer but hope to do that in the next couple of months."

For more:
- Broadband DSL Reports has this article

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