State-owned utility firm Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE), which offers telecoms services under the Kolbi brand, will begin selling fibre-based broadband to around 100,000 homes and businesses in September 2015, El Finaciero writes. The new services are to be offered over the Next Generation Access Network (RANGE, Red de Acceso de Nueva Generacion), a system developed and funded by the Bank of Costa Rica and a trust fund for public works. The network is able to provide downlink speeds of 30Mbps-100Mbps to 20,000 premises in the San Jose greater metropolitan area via fibre-to-the-home (FTTH), whilst a further 85,000 homes and businesses will have access to transfer rates of 10Mbps-30Mbps via a mixed fibre and copper network (i.e. FTTx).
Meanwhile a number of other Costa Rican operators are also making the leap to fibre-based access networks: Empresa de Servicios Publicos de Heredia (ESPH) has deployed an FTTH network but only offers access directly to corporate customers; CoopeGuanacaste is gearing up to launch FTTH services in three districts in May/June 2015 with a view to achieving full coverage of the region; and Junta Administrativa de Servicios Electricos de Cartago (Jasec) has drafted plans to deploy a fibre-optic network in the Carthage region.