& cplSiteName &

Neutral Tandem Takes on Ethernet Peering

Craig Matsumoto
4/30/2010
50%
50%

Neutral Tandem Inc. (Nasdaq: TNDM) is taking a Service Provider Information Technology (SPIT) approach to Ethernet peering, vowing that its North American Ethernet Exchange will break new ground in IT tools for carriers.

The approach isn't unique: CENX Inc. appears to be taking the idea even further. But it's particularly important to Neutral Tandem, a nine-year-old company in the crossconnect business, because CEO Rian Wren sees it as the company's ticket to attracting Tier 1 operators and graduating into the IP world.

It's another example of how new types of information technology are becoming crucial in telecom. (See The SPIT Manifesto.)

And Ethernet peering services -- the interconnection points where carriers can hand off Ethernet services to one another -- looks to be fertile ground for more sophisticated customer interfaces.

Neutral Tandem's day job is in the business of transit -- interconnecting CLECs and mobile operators, providing a service that competes with exchanges run by the Tier 1s. But that work is all about phone numbers. Neutral Tandem doesn't want to be left behind as the world goes to IP and Ethernet. So, the company is starting an Ethernet exchange, launching in 14 US cities, probably later this quarter, Wren says. (See Neutral Tandem Plans Ethernet eXchange.)

The exchange will certainly include smaller carriers as customers, but Wren wants the big fish, too. To get them, he thinks he needs that IT overhaul. In fact, IT has made up the bulk of the company's hiring lately, he says.

Neutral Tandem aims to create a platform that will give carriers remote access to Neutral Tandem's network. Carriers would be able to do their own provisioning and even launch their own test signals onto the network.

"What's going to be successful for those guys is if you make these switches look like they're owned by the carriers," Wren tells Light Reading. "I worked for AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) for 20 years. I know what they want. They want the ability to control and manage everything in this network."

Equinix Inc. (Nasdaq: EQIX), which recently took its competing Ethernet peering service out of beta, isn't giving that kind of freedom at first. But it wouldn't be surprising to see it quickly create strong tools for its carrier customers. (See Ethernet Europe: Equinix Opens Ethernet Exchange Doors .)

CENX, though, appears to be taking the concept further than Neutral Tandem is. The startup aims to simplify, not just the physical hooking-up of services, but the business aspects as well, CEO Nan Chen tells Light Reading in an email. For instance, carriers would be able to bill one another through CENX's service. (See Ethernet Gets a CENX View.)

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

(1)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Pete Baldwin
50%
50%
Pete Baldwin,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:37:38 PM
re: Neutral Tandem Takes on Ethernet Peering


Tidbit I forgot to include: Neutral Tandem's voice cross-connecting involves an MPLS network, so it's not like they're strangers to that world.  Seems like a good move, for them to get into the Ethernet services market.


CENX's plans do seem more involved than Neutral Tandem's and Equinix's, in terms of how many functions they'll take over from the carriers (billing, e.g.).  I'm hoping to follow that up in more depth.

Featured Video
From The Founder
Light Reading is spending much of this year digging into the details of how automation technology will impact the comms market, but let's take a moment to also look at how automation is set to overturn the current world order by the middle of the century.
Flash Poll
Upcoming Live Events
November 1, 2017, The Royal Garden Hotel
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue, London, UK
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue London
November 10, 2017, The Westin Times Square, New York, NY
November 16, 2017, ExCel Centre, London
November 30, 2017, The Westin Times Square
May 14-17, 2018, Austin Convention Center
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
Muni Policies Stymie Edge Computing
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/17/2017
Is US Lurching Back to Monopoly Status?
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/16/2017
Pai's FCC Raises Alarms at Competitive Carriers
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/16/2017
'Brutal' Automation & the Looming Workforce Cull
Iain Morris, News Editor, 10/18/2017
Worried About Bandwidth for 4K? Here Comes 8K!
Aditya Kishore, Practice Leader, Video Transformation, Telco Transformation, 10/17/2017
Animals with Phones
Live Digital Audio

Understanding the full experience of women in technology requires starting at the collegiate level (or sooner) and studying the technologies women are involved with, company cultures they're part of and personal experiences of individuals.

During this WiC radio show, we will talk with Nicole Engelbert, the director of Research & Analysis for Ovum Technology and a 23-year telecom industry veteran, about her experiences and perspectives on women in tech. Engelbert covers infrastructure, applications and industries for Ovum, but she is also involved in the research firm's higher education team and has helped colleges and universities globally leverage technology as a strategy for improving recruitment, retention and graduation performance.

She will share her unique insight into the collegiate level, where women pursuing engineering and STEM-related degrees is dwindling. Engelbert will also reveal new, original Ovum research on the topics of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, security and augmented reality, as well as discuss what each of those technologies might mean for women in our field. As always, we'll also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air and chat board.

Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed