Intelligent Hardware: 'An $8.5B Market'
Infonetics Research Inc. has published market forecasts for “intelligent” optical networking hardware -- equipment that automates networks so they can be controlled as single entities rather than as collections of individual boxes.
Right now, intelligent hardware represents 15 to 20 percent of the overall market for optical networking equipment, according to Infonetics, which notes strong demand for it, particularly for long-haul applications.
Intelligent optical networking gear will grow to an $8.52 billion market in 2001 -- up from $5.3 billion last year, the firm says.
The report includes a long list of companies that tout intelligent products, including Ciena Corp. (Nasdaq: CIEN), Corvis Corp. (Nasdaq: CORV), Quantum Bridge Communications Inc., Sycamore Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: SCMR), and Tellium Inc., to name just a few. Older, more established players like Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) and Nortel Networks Corp. (NYSE/Toronto: NT) also are introducing products in the space.
According to Michael Howard, author of the report and cofounder of Infonetics, the new market is a dynamic one. While most intelligent products now are designed for long-haul applications, that will change as the backbone gets faster and the network edge and access portions shift to take advantage of the bigger bandwidth, Howard says: "Expect a lot of growth in the metro edge, metro core/regional, and last-mile access parts of the network."
Presently, all areas of Howard's taxonomy are growing by at least 15 to 20 percent per quarter, he says. This will generate overall growth for intelligent optical devices of 59 percent over year 2000 levels, he predicts.
-- Mary Jander, senior editor, Light Reading http://www.lightreading.com