With collocation (from the Latin collocare "arrange" for, "set") is in telecommunications, the sharing of other resources (parking space, infrastructure such as power supply and air conditioning) at the site of the main distributor called. Alternative network operators need a so-called collocation room in the main distributor building in which they can accommodate their own technical devices. Usually the main switchboard is located in the same building as the central office.
The background to this is the unbundling of the subscriber line . The most important feature of the collocation is the transfer of the unbundled lines (galvanic connection). The options for collocation are made available by the network operators who own the subscriber lines and rent them out. They are required to provide resources and corresponding services by the national regulatory authorities. The collocation services usually involve access to industrial engineering IT systems, in which information about the network of connection lines is collected. A number of technical standards must be observed for collocation (e.g. weight load on the stand area, emission of interference radiation, heat emission). It must be ensured that the devices of all alternative network operators who share the collocation areas do not interfere with one another.
The unbundling is not always implemented as a galvanic connection. The unbundled lines can also be transferred in multiplexed form using PCM technology, for example. If the lines are not rented out in full, but only operated as line sharing , only one bit stream is transferred. Such techniques make it possible to operate the collocation in different buildings or even different locations than the building in which the main distributor is located. These interfaces to the connection lines can also be reached from any other location via multiplex systems and the public long-distance networks. Expressions such as "remote collocation" or "virtual collocation" were coined for these technical procedures in unbundling.
The national regulatory authorities, in cooperation with the network operators, draw up a set of rules for collocation and determine the prices to be paid by the alternative network operators for the various forms of collocation.
- Remco van der Velden: Competition and cooperation on the German DSL market - economics, technology and regulation, Mohr Siebeck Verlag, Tübingen 2007, ISBN 3-1614-9117-3