According to Vertical Systems Group, U.S. fiber lit buildings exceeded 1 million at the end of 2019. VSG's 2019 U.S. Fiber Lit Buildings LEADERBOARD results are as follows (in rank order by number of on-net fiber lit buildings): AT&T, Verizon, Spectrum Enterprise, CenturyLink, Comcast, Cox, Crown Castle Fiber, Frontier, Zayo, Altice USA, Atlantic Broadband, Windstream and Consolidated Communications. The 13 retail and wholesale fiber providers each had 10,000 or more on-net U.S. fiber lit commercial buildings as of year-end 2019.
Additionally, 12 companies qualified for the 2019 Challenge Tier as follows (in alphabetical order): Cincinnati Bell, Cleareon, Cogent, Conterra, DQE Communications, Everstream, FirstLight, IFN, Logix Fiber Networks, Segra, Unite Private Networks, and Uniti Fiber. Those fiber providers each had between 2,000 and 9,999 U.S. fiber lit commercial buildings.
"The number of on-net fiber lit commercial buildings exceeded 1 million in 2019 as network providers concentrated on U.S. footprint expansion. New fiber deployments are providing dedicated access to network services, connecting 5G small cells, enabling low latency for edge computing, and supporting the massive bandwidth surge for webscale companies," said Rosemary Cochran, principal of Vertical Systems Group. "Our 2020 outlook is that while essential fiber deployments will proceed, some planned installations will be adjusted due to unanticipated capacity demands caused by the coronavirus crisis."
Other findings indicate:
- AT&T retains the No. 1 rank on the Fiber Lit Buildings LEADERBOARD for the fourth consecutive year.
- The top four companies - AT&T, Verizon, Spectrum Enterprise and CenturyLink - each have more than 100,000 on-net fiber lit buildings.
- Atlantic Broadband (No. 11) and Consolidated Communications (No. 13) attained a LEADERBOARD rank for the first time, moving up from the Challenge Tier.
- Windstream dropped to the No. 12 position, down from No. 11 in the prior year.
- Conterra, DQE Communications and Everstream all advanced to the Challenge Tier, moving up from the Market Player tier.
- GTT and FiberLight dropped into the Market Player tier from Challenge Tier.
Market Players include all other fiber providers with fewer than 2,000 U.S. commercial fiber lit buildings.
For this analysis, a fiber lit building is defined as a commercial site or data center that has on-net optical fiber connectivity to a network provider's infrastructure, plus active service termination equipment onsite. Excluded from the analysis are standalone cell towers, small cells not located in fiber lit buildings, near net buildings, buildings classified as coiled at curb or coiled in building, HFC-connected buildings, carrier central offices, residential buildings, and private or dark fiber installations.