Access networks implement the inter-connection of the customers/subscribers to wide-area
communication networks. They allow a large number of subscribers to use various telecommunications
services. However, the costs of realization, installation, and maintenance of
access networks are very high, very often representing more than 50%
of the investment in
the network. Therefore, network providers try to realize the access network at as low a cost
as possible to increase their competitiveness in the deregulated telecommunications market.
In most cases, access networks are still the property of incumbent network providers (e.g.,
the former monopolistic telephone companies). Because of that, new network providers try
to find solutions to realize their own access networks. A promising possibility for the realization
of access networks is offered by the PowerLine Communications (PLC) technology.