Infinera Intros the 'Meshponder'

Transport vendor says its new products are addressing the need for 'cloud scale' networks.

November 17, 2016

2 Min Read
Infinera Intros the 'Meshponder'

Infinera has unveiled a new set of optical transport products that, it hopes, can revive its fortunes after a tough year that has seen demand and revenues take a battering after years of significant success. (See Infinera Unveils New DTN-X Platforms, Infinera Reports Q3 Sales Slump and Infinera Reports Q2.)

The company issued a wide range of products and upgrades today but at the heart of the announcement are the XT-3300 and XT-3600, dubbed "meshponders" by the vendor, which are new "cloud scale" members of the company's well-regarded DTN-X platform family, designed for metro and long-haul deployments.

Infinera has built these new products on the Infinite Capacity Engine (ICE), which was launched at OFC earlier this year and which also underpins the company's recent next-gen data center interconnect (DCI) product, Cloud Xpress 2. (See Infinera Ups the DCI Ante and Infinera Revs Its Optical Engine.)

The meshponder is, it says, a muxponder with sliceable photonics and is something that will be unique to Infinera, notes Heavy Reading senior analyst Sterling Perrin. "The meshponder itself is unique to Infinera's PIC [photonic integrated chip] architecture, so we won't see that trend extend to other vendors," notes Perrin.

"It's a way to create high-capacity, multi-point connections, whereas the Cloud Xpress and Cloud Xpress 2 are point-to-point only by design. I believe alternative architectures would use ROADMs to provide the multi-point switching. My guess is that meshponders aren't going to be the top selling point for Infinera wins. Rather, I think that customers that have bought into the overall Infinera architecture will like the added flexibility that multi-point brings," adds the analyst.

Perrin adds: "Infinera is blasting out a lot of announcements at the end of the year, which is impressive. The company launched the next-gen PIC and DSP combo -- ICE -- in March this year and then came out with the Cloud Xpress product based on ICE in September. We knew more ICE-based products were coming, but not this soon. So there are the new ICE-based meshponder products and the new ICE-based cards for the DTN XTC-4 and -10 systems. So we see the roadmap to put ICE into products is very aggressive."

— Ray Le Maistre, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

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