Fiber Optics: less obstacles with Legislative Decree 33/2016


Fiber: what is it?

It is the most advanced and efficient data transmission technology to date. The main characteristic is that the signal passes through a new infrastructure made of glass fiber filaments enclosed in casing.

This means that there is no lack of service degradation due to the distance between the control unit and individual users, the possibility of transiting higher flows compared to ADSL and great development potential.

The use is recent although the discovery is not. In the past it was used for decorative purposes, but the peculiarity of the fiber is represented by the ability to support broadband connections that guarantee high security and speed performances, which makes fiber connections among the most appreciated.

The glass filament has a very high reflecting power, capturing and trapping the light itself in a natural way. The connections work by exploiting the speed of light.


Broadband connection
Speed ​​(40Gb / s)
Safety: the cables do not carry electricity directly guaranteeing physical security and, the interceptions are discouraged by the high speed and the ease of interception of the interventions.
No interference because the fiber is made of insulating material
Potential: in quantum physics the quantum telescasoprto experimentation was achieved with the transfer of information over seven kilometers of optical fiber. (Wolfgang Tittel of the University of Calgary (Canada) and that of Jian-Wei Pan of the University of Science and Technology of China – Source New Scientist)
Resistance (weighs less than ADSL)
Insensitive to climate change
Excellent signal continuity
Very low attenuation levels therefore transmits a lot of data in a short time


Costs for installation and wiring

Operators grappling with the offer

Converting to the fiber users who now seems to be sufficient ADSL and those that are limited to mobile connections, it is a complicated issue that can not compromise the investment capabilities of operators and therefore the country’s innovation.

The growth rate is increasing but not enough, however: the share of subscribers, out of the total of those covered by ultra broadband, see us at the last places in Europe (subscribers have exceeded one million share – source Agicom. of utilities is about 5 percent of Italian housing units, and ultra-broadband coverage has reached 34 percent – Ernst & Young data)

The application must be unlocked through the price lever.

Operators since last year have requested government support for incentives and simplifications in investments and in support of demand. They ask for the laying regulation (former “excavation regulations”) with simplifications for the use of minitrenches that reduce the costs of excavations and municipal authorizations. In fact, with the Decree 33/2016 something changes as described in the next paragraph.

Longer and more complicated the process to support demand through various tools: vouchers to reduce, with public funds, the costs of fiber-based subscriptions, prior aggregation of the demand (of users and companies). In general a Digital Growth plan is required that will strengthen the offer of public services online. So for now we focus on low prices, movies and little else.

Decree Law 33/2016: what changes?

Decree Decree 33/2016 approved by the Cdm implements a European directive of 61/2014 and defines “standards aimed at facilitating the installation of high-speed electronic communications networks”.

The main changes are the provisions on reducing installation costs and accelerating installation times.

Non-reconnaissance charges are abandoned. This means that the operators are taxed for the sole occupation of public land (Tosap and Cosap), giving the municipalities the possibility of imposing other taxes on the work, ie the so-called non-reconnaissance charges.

Ample space for innovative digging technologies. In the absence of available infrastructures, the installation of high-speed electronic communications networks must be “preferably done using environmentally friendly excavation technologies”. In short, a push to use more agile solutions.

There are also news on access to infrastructure. Each operator and operator is recognized “the right to offer network operators access to their physical infrastructure for the installation of elements of high-speed electronic communications networks”.

The “infrastructure database” is born. The decree provides for a “mapping of existing fast electronic communication networks and any other physical infrastructure functional to hosting them, present in the national territory”. The National Federated Infrastructure Information System will therefore be born.

Even for condominiums things change. The “owners of real estate units, or the condominium …… is recognized” the right, and where required, the obligation, to satisfy all reasonable requests for access presented by network operators, according to fair and non-discriminatory terms and conditions, also with regard to the price (which will be established by Agcom) “.


The road is open and appears more passable. In the coming months / years we will see how the fiber will spread and how much other technologies (see 5G) will scratch the market. What is certain is that if the watchword is “DIGITAL” transformation, it is essential to support and promote the innovative technologies / technologies that ferry us in the path of the revolution 4.0, fueling the labor market and giving breath to various industrial sectors, such as for example to the electromechanical industry for installation and wiring.

Editorial board

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