Light Reading

BTE Bits: A Packet-Optical Review

Dan O'Shea
7/1/2014
50%
50%

A few random observations as I scan my notes, remember conversations (or try to) and just generally try to make sense of Light Reading's recent Big Telecom Event:

  • Two companies situated right next to one another in the Packet Optical Zone on the demo floor -- Ekinops SAS and ECI Telecom Ltd. -- had something in common. Both are based in other parts of the world -- Ekinops in France, ECI in Israel -- but are gearing up organizationally and strategically, beefing up their sales approaches and products, to pursue more business opportunities in North America, particularly the US. (See Ekinops Entices 100G Metro Market.)

    Many other vendors from outside the US have tried and failed to accomplish the same over the years, but a new round of reasons has cropped up -- packet-optical convergence, 100G metro optical, trial opportunities for technologies beyond 100G -- to entice a new group of vendors. ECI, for its part, already has made some progress, announcing just prior to BTE that it had landed Michigan carrier Comlink as a customer.

  • Between Ekinops, ECI and MRV Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: MRVC), we may have a job-hunters market for optical sector sales talent. All three spoke of sales staffs that are growing, or have been recently enlarged or made over. For their sake, the packet-optical and 100G metro optical market buzz had better be for real. (See Euronews: ECI Telecom Restructures.)

  • MPLS-TP was a hot topic a couple years ago, and seemed to fade, but it's not nearly dead, according to many vendors at BTE. There was some question when Ciena recently launched a packet-optical metro platform with Ethernet and MPLS-TP switching how viable the technology was. But several folks I spoke with at BTE said they have it in their products, and claimed deployments around the world, indicating carriers are interested in the predictable transport performance and management capabilities it brings to packet networks. (See Ciena Stirs Up the Metro Market and ITU Pushes Toward MPLS-TP Answer.)

  • Packet-optical convergence, without a doubt, was one of the hottest topics of discussion at BTE. Numerous vendors and at least a couple of carriers offered variations on the same basic statement: "It's really happening now."

    The BTE panel, "P-OTS 2.0: Reaping the Benefits," moderated by Heavy Reading senior analyst Sterling Perrin, was a popular destination for those wanting to discuss the packet-optical evolution. The discussion, however, quickly turned from P-OTS 2.0 to P-OTS 3.0, a shiny new version of the acronym offered up by Zeev Draer, vice president of strategic marketing at MRV. P-OTS 3.0, according to Draer, will be characterized by packet-oriented transport; integrated packet and circuit switching; IP, MPLS, Carrier Ethernet and OTN framing; 100G MSA-based interfaces; SyncE timing and synchronization; multi-layer OAM; ROADM and hybrid SDN support.

  • In another panel moderated by Perrin, "Software-Defined Networking for Optical Networks," panelists debated the viability of OpenFlow for transport networks. There was some concern, voiced by a couple of panelists and audience members, about the possibility that SDN actually could add more network complexity, rather than reduce it, and increase security challenges, with the addition of potentially numerous software interfaces.

    Panelist Glenn Wellbrock, director of optical transport network architecture and design at Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ), cooled some of those fears, but also made clear the broader challenge: "With SDN, we can automate a lot of antiquated, manual processes and tools, so it's an improvement. But we need to be able to do that with our existing back office, without changing back office elements every time we add a new vendor. If we have to do that, this whole transition will fail."

This is just a taste of what I heard and saw at BTE. More to come in a future blog post.

— Dan O'Shea, Managing Editor, Light Reading

(0)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
More Blogs from DOS Attack
IP and optical have been moving toward a physical convergence for years, but software layer integration is the new hot topic.
Optical Transport Month at Light Reading has come to an end, but stay tuned for much more optical coverage.
Light Reading readers have confirmed the metro is where it's at for optical in 2015.
Michigan operator Comlink explains how and why it just joined the 100G race.
Heavy Reading senior analyst Sterling Perrin takes stock of the metro 100G movement percolating in the optical sector.
Flash Poll
From The Founder
The New IP is actually bigger even than business. Like another hugely important tech that Light Reading is digging into right now, the New IP has the potential to change the world by fundamentally advancing what it is possible for people to achieve with communications.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Shares Its Vision of the Future of Mobile Networks Innovations

2|26|15   |   2:30   |   (0) comments


Mobile broadband is changing our lives. It's reshaping the Internet, industry, and society. It allows us to freely connect with one another anytime, anywhere. At this year's Mobile World Congress, Huawei will share its latest insights and newest ideas and technologies that will shape the future of MBB. They will showcase their end-to-end MBB solutions that will ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Accelerate Digitizing, Boost Digital Business

2|26|15   |   6:14   |   (0) comments


A new digital revolution is leading us to a better connected world. Together with millions of digital partners, Huawei will help CSPs to build their digital service ecosystem and aggregate a wide variety of digital services. In this video, we find out how Huawei is going to help CSPs implement digital operations.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
The Secret Recipe to Enabling Hyper-Growth Industries

2|26|15   |   3:38   |   (0) comments


With a number of successful cases on network capability exposure, Huawei is going to share the secret recipe to enabling hyper-growth markets with a step-by-step approach.
LRTV Documentaries
BTE 2015 Is Bigger & Even Better

2|25|15   |   03:13   |   (4) comments


This year's Big Telecom Event (BTE) in Chicago is going to provide more opportunities than ever for networking, getting to grips with key industry challenges and opportunities and, equally as important, having some fun.
LRTV Interviews
Light Reading ICT Leaders Roundtable at MWC 2015

2|12|15   |   1:07   |   (2) comments


On Sunday March 1, 2015, Light Reading will host an ICT Leaders Roundtable in partnership with Huawei. At this half-day event, CIOs, analysts and researchers will discuss key industry trends like virtualization in the cloud with a specific focus on new business models. Located at the luxurious Renaissance Hotel near the Fira Barcelona, space is limited so please ...
LRTV Documentaries
Going Green in 2015

2|12|15   |   02:04   |   (0) comments


Energy efficiency is set to be an incredibly hot topic in the telecom industry this year.
LRTV Custom TV
SDN & NFV: Where Are We Going From Here?

2|11|15   |   11:27   |   (0) comments


Vitesse Semiconductor CTO Martin Nuss gives his perspective on why SDN and NFV should be tightly interconnected and how he sees the industry moving forward.
LRTV Documentaries
Time for Gigabit Europe?

2|9|15   |   01:27   |   (4) comments


Gigabit broadband networks are springing up all around the US and they'll soon become more commonplace in Europe.
LRTV Interviews
Brocade Brings New IP Vision to 2020 Vision Executive Summit

2|3|15   |   4:23   |   (0) comments


In December 2014, Light Reading gathered telecom executives in Reykjavik, Iceland to discuss their vision for high-capacity networks through the end of the decade. The intimate, interactive meeting was set against the backdrop of Iceland's spectacular natural beauty. As one of the event's founding sponsors, Brocade's Kelly Herrell shared his company's strategy at ...
LRTV Interviews
Brocade's Kelly Herrell on the New IP

2|2|15   |   12:36   |   (0) comments


In December 2014, Steve Saunders sat down with Brocade VP of Software Networking Kelly Herrell at Light Reading's 2020 Vision executive summit in Reykjavik, Iceland. They spoke about Brocade's approach to the New IP, the future of the telecom industry, and more.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Dr. Dong Sun Talks About Carriers' Digital Transformation & Huawei’s Telco OS

1|29|15   |   6:28   |   (0) comments


Dr. Dong Sun, Chief Architect of Digital Transformation Solutions at Huawei, discusses how telecom operators can become digital ecosystem enablers and deliver optimal user experiences that are in real-time, on-demand, all-online, DIY and social (ROADS).
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Chief Network Architect Talks about Network Experience & Operators’ Strategies

1|29|15   |   3:39   |   (0) comments


In the digital age, network experience has become the primary productivity especially for telecom operators. In this video, Wenshuan Dang, Huawei’s Chief Network Architect, discusses how carriers can tackle the challenge of infrastructure complexity in order to enhance business agility and improve user experience.
Upcoming Live Events
March 17, 2015, The Cable Center, Denver, CO
April 14, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City, NY
May 12, 2015, Grand Hyatt, Denver, CO
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 8, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 10, 2015, Chicago, IL
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Net neutrality, broadband services and the current outlook on data consumption, as presented by the New Jersey Institute of Technology.
Hot Topics
Cyber Security Expert Warns: You're Doing It Wrong
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 2/23/2015
10 Weirdly Useful IoT Devices
Eryn Leavens, Copy Desk Editor, 2/24/2015
Small Cells Enabling Location Services
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 2/25/2015
FCC Adopts Title II Rules
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, 2/26/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Check out Light Reading's interview with Jay Samit, the newly appointed CEO of publicly traded SeaChange International Inc. With a resume that includes Sony, EMI, and Universal, Samit brings a reputation as an entrepreneur and a disruptor to his new role at the video solutions company. Hear what he had to say about the opportunities in video, as well as the outlook for cable, telco, OTT and mobile service providers.
G'day! And welcome to an entirely new feature on Light Reading -- our weekly "CEO-to-CEO" interview.