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EstWin broadband infrastructure network brings ultra-fast connectivity to rural Estonia

The Baltic States have some of the best fibre coverage in the EU. An example of this is the “Estonian Wideband Infrastructure Network” project, EstWin, which seeks to solve the rural connectivity challenge in an area underserved by telecom operators. EstWin aims to bring ultra-fast internet access within 1,5 km of all rural households, enterprises and institutions in the project area. Funded almost 100% by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD), this project was a finalist in the European Broadband Awards.

Worker laying fibre optic cables

In this video interview, Mr. Priit Soom, Head of the Estonian Broadband Development Foundation, explains that although the need in rural areas is clear, telecom operators do not always feel it is economically feasible for them to invest. To respond to the demand and find a solution for Estonian broadband networks in rural areas, a group was created under the Estonian Association of Information Technology and Telecommunications (ITL).

Their solution, EstWin, is a passive, middle mile network: it does not employ electricity-consuming devices, and requires operators to deliver the end-user connection. Using micro-duct technology, this 6500 km fibre optic network rents fibre pairs to internet service providers.

For more information, visit the project’s website and read more in the European Commission database of broadband good practices.


This video is part of a series of interviewson broadband roll-out in Europe, produced for the European Network of Broadband Competence Offices (BCO Network).


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