Have you ever noticed those colored dots that are always present whenever we talk about fiber optics? This is the classification system of fiber types introduced with AGCOM Resolution 292/18/CONS of the Communications Regulatory Authority, the Italian body that regulates the telecommunications and media sector, which provides for the use of symbols graphics of three different colors. But what are they for? Let's find out together.

AGCOM Resolution 292/18/CONS

With AGCOM Resolution 292/18/CONS the obligation was introduced for suppliers offering telecommunications services to use five colored symbols "F” (F - FTTH/FTTB Fiber), “FR” (Mixed Fiber or Mixed Radio Fiber), “R” (Mixed or Radio) with the relevant subtitles , in any type of communication to the public, from advertising material to subscription service sheets.  To simplify, the stickers provide information on the quality and transparency of the services offered by communication operators, essentially, they are a sort of "label" which helps consumers evaluate and compare offers on the market for the product offered. A practical and intuitive system to classify the various types of fiber connections and avoid any type of misunderstanding with consumers.

Following the aforementioned resolution, operators in the sector were required to use the transparency sticker in advertising communications describing the offer, in the display of information during the pre-contractual phase and during the signing of the contract. Furthermore, the aforementioned resolution defines the technical characteristics and the related names for the different types of infrastructure through which broadband and ultra-broadband services are provided. Let's see together below each sticker which type of optical fiber it corresponds to.

Green Label (F - Fiber) FTTH/FTTB

The green symbol is used for FTTH or FFTB connections, what is defined as "pure" fiber, or “Fiber to the home” or “Fiber to the building”. For this type of technology, the resolution provides for the use of a "F" subtitled "fiber", written in white inside a round green sticker (Pantone n. 361). Currently, it represents the highest connection level in terms of download and upload speed, with minimized latency times and a connection characterized by reliability, stability b> and excellent quality. The only difference between the two types of fiber indicated with the green dot is the classification of the end user; in fact, FTTH (Fiber to the Home) means a fiber optic access network that reaches directly to the user's home or building; this access network is made up of fiber transmission channels that cover the entire extension of the route up to the terminal point of the network. FTTB (Fiber to the Building) is conceptually equivalent to FTTH architecture, but in this case it is the owner or condominium owner who is responsible for creating the fiber optic cabling infrastructure.

Yellow Label (FR – Mixed Fiber/Mixed Radio Fiber) FTTN/FTTC/FWA+

The use of the yellow sticker (Pantone 137) is expected with the wording FR in white subtitled “mixed fiber” and/or “mixed radio fiber" when we are in the presence of a type of "hybrid" fiber, classified as "Fiber to the cabinet" (FTTC), "Fiber to the node” (FTTN) and “Fixed Wireless Access” (FWA+). According to the resolution, the use of the yellow symbol is envisaged for all services offered on mixed architectures where there is a connection via fiber optic cables and copper cables or radio waves. Specifically, in fact, as we have seen in our in-depth analysis dedicated to fiber types , in the case of FTTC fiber optics, the signal arrives from the telecommunications exchange to the cabinet via a fiber optic cable, while the copper connection is used from the street cabinet to the user's home. Even in the case of FWA+ technology, data transmission takes place on a mixed network made up of both optical fiber and a network that uses radio connections. FTTN also falls into the mixed fiber category and its operation is the same as FTTC; in fact, from the operations center to the road cabin the cables are fiber optic, but the final part is characterized by copper cables. This type of fiber is used when the home to be reached is at a long distance from the exchange and the copper cables start from a node point which can coincide with the FTTC copper access network cabinet or with the radio station for the FWA+ connections.

Red Label (R – Mixed/Radio) FTTE/FWA

The red sticker (Pantone 192) with the “R” symbol and the white subtitle “mixed” or “radio” is used when the connection service offered does not have access to a bandwidth ultra wide. The “Fiber to the Exchange (FTTE)” and the “Fixed Wireless Access (FWA)” do not, in fact, have line sections characterized by optical fibre, in the case of the FTTE the section of line from the exchange to the final home will be composed entirely of copper cables. FWA connections, on the other hand, use radio frequencies to create a wireless connection between the access point (often a base station or an antenna) and user devices, such as computers or routers, indoors. of its scope. The radio signal carries data to and from connected devices, allowing them to access the Internet or other networks. The use of radio waves makes FWA particularly suitable for areas where running physical cables (such as fiber optics or copper cables) may be difficult or expensive. However, by not using cables, the actual speed and stability of the FWA network can be affected by the presence of physical obstacles, such as trees, mountains or particularly tall buildings. Furthermore, radio signal cleanliness is a critical element that can impact overall system performance.

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