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handsomeinked
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Could Virgin Leverage O2s' backhaul to add new POPs for broadband and TV

Hi there, I had (what I think is) an interesting brain fart the other day. As VM and O2 bring their networks closer together and start to merge operations, one thing has occurred to me: Do you think Virgin Media could start using the leased lines that deliver connectivity to O2 cell sites to enable them to start to expand their network much further than ever before (I am of course making an assumption that the sites are on flexible bearers (e.g. 500Gbps on a 1Tbps bearer). Theoretically, once the networks are merged, it shouldn't be too hard to setup nano-datacentres and build out new FTTP networks in areas previously considered too expensive to reach as they now have a connection back to their core network this would give VM the option to build out in even the most rural of locations (providing there's an O2 cell site). Additionally, given Openreach have a duct and pole access product (PIA) on their network, VM could theoretically do a no dig deployment, especially as VM have said they plan to move from a HFC network to XGS-PON based FTTP network for TV and Broadband.

What are people's thoughts? Am I crazy (probably) but does this sound like a potential move? Moreover, given the CEO of Liberty Global has already stated he thinks the wholesale broadband market in this country is ripe for the picking HERE. It does sound like they want to go head to head with OpenReach. 

 



It’s always best to be positive but we all have crappy days.

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Roger_Gooner
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Re: Could Virgin Leverage O2s' backhaul to add new POPs for broadband and TV

I can see VM possibly doing more backhaul for O2 but little else in the foreseeable future as VM will have its hands full in building its all-FTTP network and carrying out the the largest HFC-to-FTTP network migration to have been announced anywhere in the world.

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Andrew-G
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Re: Could Virgin Leverage O2s' backhaul to add new POPs for broadband and TV

What's been announced suggests it is more likely to work the other way round, with VM's existing backhaul and even local networks carrying 5G traffic for O2. I can't see they'd worry about the modest potential of building new consumer networks around O2's sites, given all the other complexities of the merger, new commercial ambitions, and ever changing technology. 

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handsomeinked
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Re: Could Virgin Leverage O2s' backhaul to add new POPs for broadband and TV

I've seen those announcements, virgin do have a great leased line business which, assuming O2 are currently using BT (or Thus, or KCom or other) leased lines to provide their backhaul one can see the logic of moving those over to Virgin media leased lines in time and certainly in the short term you can see O2 leveraging Virgin Media's leased lines as cost effective backhaul for smaller mmWave 5G cell sites, putting them on a much more even footing with EE (BT). But it does seem logical that, certainly for the smaller towns VM don't currently cover, if they replace the backhaul for a cell site to use a VM leased line or put new cell sites up, they would add the capacity to enable Broadband and TV service to the surrounding areas. After all, if they want to beat Openreach at their own game and become the largest wholesale broadband provider they have a long way to go in terms of geographic footprint.


It’s always best to be positive but we all have crappy days.

VM Hub5 on Gig1, Etc etc


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Roger_Gooner
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Re: Could Virgin Leverage O2s' backhaul to add new POPs for broadband and TV

It's one thing to push out a fibre pair to a 5G cell, quite another to provide FTTP to thousands of premises in a new area. This fibre needs to originate from a hub site to a new virtual hub, which must be powered, and if a hub site isn't available then it's a big cost to either build a hub site or have a lengthy cable run to the VHB. Then you need more fibre from the VHB to splitter cabinets for drops - which means more cost. This is why I don't think that VM will do much more for O2 than providing some more backhaul in the foreeable future.

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pcg33kuk
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Re: Could Virgin Leverage O2s' backhaul to add new POPs for broadband and TV

Virgin Media Business already provide backhaul to o2 at some of there sites and it wouldn't surprise me if they are also used in some the data centre redundancy.

o2 If i recall also use some of the other major enterprise services for backhaul, as well as BT and KCom

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handsomeinked
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Re: Could Virgin Leverage O2s' backhaul to add new POPs for broadband and TV

I completely get your point, it was more of an interesting brain fart than a 100% planned and costed thing... However it would reduce the civil engineering costs, if you already have ducts, blowing additional fibre is far less expensive and the footprint required for data centres and switching is far less than it was when most of VMs POPs were built. But it has been fascinating hearing everyone's thoughts and maybe I am pipe-dreaming... TBH I'm more excited about the XGS-PON based FTTP roll out.


It’s always best to be positive but we all have crappy days.

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japitts
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Re: Could Virgin Leverage O2s' backhaul to add new POPs for broadband and TV


@pcg33kuk wrote:
o2 If i recall also use some of the other major enterprise services for backhaul, as well as BT and KCom


All the mobile operators use a variety of backhaul providers, although each of them have preferred solutions.

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