More buildings opt to have fibre-optic cables pre-installed

Close to 200 commercial buildings have signed up for a scheme that will see fibre-optic cables installed in their premises, regardless of whether they plan to take up fibre broadband services.

This will allow businesses to get such services quickly when they want them.

The latest to come on board is Singapore-based developer Ascendas-Singbridge, which manages more than 130 properties in Singapore, including the Singapore Science Park, and Changi City at Changi Business Park.

About 70 of its buildings will come under the Fibre Ready Scheme, which was first announced in February 2014.

The scheme was to get building owners to cooperate with fibre- optic cable installers to ease delays in receiving fibre broadband services.

Under the Fibre Ready Scheme, cables to every unit are installed even before businesses order their fibre broadband packages. There would be no need for further installation works..., allowing fibre broadband services to be delivered in about a week.

Under it, cables to every unit are installed even before businesses order their fibre broadband packages. There would be no need for further installation works when the order is made, allowing fibre broadband services to be delivered in about a week.

Mr Tan Yew Chin, Ascendas-Singbridge Group's chief executive officer of Singapore and South-east Asia, said being on the scheme will result in a faster turnaround time for customers applying for fibre broadband services.

The group has engaged telco M1 to install the fibre-optic cables.

Its first completed project is Ascent, an integrated office and retail building at the Singapore Science Park.

Currently, businesses may have to wait three weeks or more to get fibre broadband delivered once it is ordered from Internet service providers such as StarHub, M1, MyRepublic and ViewQwest.

To date, 50 buildings - including City Square Mall, The South Beach and 211 Henderson Industrial Park - have been installed with cables under the $200 million scheme, which is administered by the Infocomm Media Development Authority.

The agency subsidises up to 90 per cent of the cost of additional fibre capacity in commercial buildings, capped at $300,000 per building.

In exchange, building owners must facilitate additional works required to offer fibre services to tenants.

Businesses had faced perpetual delays in receiving their fibre broadband orders.

For this, Singapore's high-speed fibre broadband network builder, Netlink Trust, formerly known as OpenNet, had been fined multiple times.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 04, 2016, with the headline 'More buildings opt to have fibre-optic cables pre-installed'. Print Edition | Subscribe