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Singapore embarks on island-wide fibre optic cable installation

Melissa Chua | June 17, 2009
OpenNet to invest more than US$68 million on top of US$515 million funding from IDA

SINGAPORE, 17 JUNE 2009 OpenNet, the consortium charged with laying the foundation for Singapore's upcoming ultra high-speed broadband network, will start installing fibre optic cables into commercial and residential properties from September.

The consortium, formed from a partnership between SingTel, Singapore Press Holdings, SP Telecommunications and Axia Netmedia, expects to invest S$100 million (US$68.7 million) in total to complete the project, on top of S$750 million (US$515.3 million) funding from Singapore's Infocomm Development Authority (IDA).

OpenNet will start work in Macpherson, Jurong, Middle Road and Geylang. The consortium expects to have 56,000 homes and 1,000 office buildings cabled by the first month. All properties, with the exception of those in rural areas or scheduled for demolishment, are expected to be cable ready by 2012.

The island's upcoming ultra high-speed broadband network is expected to come with broadband speeds of up to 1 Gbps. Such speeds are expected to enable functions such as high-definition video to be utilised by homes and offices.

Tan Kah-Ru, chief executive officer, OpenNet, said the high bandwidth availability will attract more multinationals to base their research and development operations in Singapore.

OpenNet will start sending letters to homeowners from next month. Installation is free and will take four hours per home; a fee of S$220 (US$151.20) for apartments and S$450 (US$309.20) for landed properties will be charged for homeowners who want the fibre optic cables laid at a later date.

The IDA says services on the ultra high-speed broadband network could commence as early as next year.


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