The number of North American fiber to the home (FTTH) subscribers now stands at more than 5.3 million according to a recently released study by the Fiber-to-the-Home Council.

The study also found continued robust growth in the number of homes passed by FTTH networks, which rose to 17.2 million from 13.8 million a year ago.  Five years after their deployment began in earnest, fiber to the home networks are now available to 15 percent of homes in North America.

"The march to all-fiber networks is showing no sign of letting up in the United States and Canada," said Joe Savage, President of the FTTH Council, which promotes and tracks the growth of fiber to the home in North America.  

In addition to the 5.33 million homes connected to FTTH, the study found that the overall "take rate" - the percentage of those offered FTTH service who decide to subscribe - went up for the seventh straight six-month period, with the vast majority of providers experiencing take rates of greater than 50 percent.

Led by Verizon's massive investment in FTTH technology in the deployment of its FiOS service, the fiber to the home industry in North America also includes hundreds of smaller telephone companies and other network providers, municipalities, planned residential communities and cable television companies.

FTTH connectivity is notable because it allows providers to offer numerous services such as high definition television along with blazing fast upload and download speeds.

Perhaps the largest roll out of Fiber to the Home in Canada began rolling out this month in Frederiction. Bell Aliant has announced that it expects to have 70,000 homes in Fredericton and Saint John passed by fiber by the middle of 2010.

Download the complete FTTH from  here .