Another consideration is lead-time. Where available, FTTC can be delivered in days whereas EFM can take many weeks to be installed. Also FTTC uses the same back-end systems as BTW broadband and so APIs are available for your supplier to automate everything from placing the order to diagnosing problems, raising faults and calling out engineers. Some of the better ISPs will extend these tools out to their partners giving them ultimate control and choice. Sadly none of the EFM suppliers have developed APIs for their products although both TTB and BTW say they are on the way. Consequently EFM is provisioned manually and the process is high touch and high cost with protracted and unpredictable lead times. As more suppliers enter the EFM market prices will inevitably fall and without automation there will come a point when it is just not economical to sell EFM.
Over time the distinctions between EFM and FTTC will blur. Networks will probably launch contended versions of Ethernet and 1:1 versions of FTTC and there will be less of a difference in price. It is all good news for the reseller because as SMEs demand faster and more reliable connections they will be happy to increase recurring ARPU by upgrading them to more expensive connectivity on longer term contracts.
EFM vs. FTTC
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