A new extension is to be given to the Superfast Broadband (SFBB) voucher program, which normally expires in March 2022, as they have about € 20 million out of the total € 50 million of the original budget left unallocated. .
The interest for high speed connections and in particular fiber optics to the home (Fiber To The Home – FTTH) is constantly increasing, while at the same time the fiber optic networks of the telecommunication providers are expanding. The course of applications shows that the SFBB program started before its time, as in 2018, which was the first year it “ran”, the participation was minimal.
The SFBB started in 2018 and would initially last until March 2020, subsidizing with a coupon part of the connection cost (ie one-time connection cost of 48 euros) and part of the monthly fee of 13 euros per month for 24 months.
The main goals of the program are to stimulate demand, which aims to maximize the use of available broadband solutions, in order to bridge the long-term digital divide in Greece and the creation of an initial base (early adopters) for the adoption of services offered by the new generation networks in the Greek market in order to help familiarize consumers with these services,
In March 2020, it was decided to extend the program for two years, but also to expand it to companies and professionals, as until then the beneficiaries could only be natural persons.
In 2020 the applications started to increase but in fact the SFBB “took off” only last year. According to information in 2021, about 63,840 households and businesses applied for the coupon, while in 2020 only 17,921 applications were submitted.
In total, the coupons that have been given in the four years that the action has been running reach 85,000, which means that 30 million euros have been spent out of the total 50 million euros that have been committed for the program.
Fiber Readiness in the coming months
The “Fiber Readiness” program, which has been included in the Recovery Fund with a budget of 73 million euros to subsidize building owners who want to install fiber optic networks, is expected to run by the summer, according to information. Digital Governance with the competent European authorities to approve the grant.
The program was designed to address one of the main obstacles that arise in the widespread adoption of fiber optic connections, ie the work required which is costly and to be done often requires the approval of the entire apartment building.
This is because a new network is being created within the apartment building, which is connected to the central fiber optic network that has been installed under the road and then extends into the service subscriber’s house.
With “Fiber Readiness” it will be possible to install the necessary networks in the apartment building and on all floors and then anyone who wants to make a fiber optic connection will simply be asked to complete the final connection from the floor to his apartment.