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Ethernet equipment

EENY 2009: Interoute Targets Edge Unity

NEW YORK -- Ethernet Expo Americas 2009 -- Pan-European operator Interoute Communications Ltd. has been preaching the "Keep it simple!" gospel for years, and now the carrier is taking that approach right to the edge of its network and into the enterprise customer premises. (See Carrier CTO Slams Vendor Complexity.)

Addressing the crowd here, Interoute CTO Matthew Finnie said his company is about to start pushing the concept of "unified connectivity" to its enterprise customers, with the offer of a single managed customer premises piece of equipment for the delivery of multiple services -- "one box to rule them all," he called it.

The idea is that all of Interoute's customers would have a single box, instead of multiple devices, that can provide a menu of services -- Internet access, point-to-point Ethernet, Layer 2 and Layer 3 VPNs, and access to hosting and SIP-based voice services.

It's something Interoute wants so it can provide and install a single box that can deliver multiple services and be provisioned and managed remotely. Finnie tells Light Reading that his team currently needs to manage about 45 different CPE (customer premises equipment) models and he wants to bring this down to just a handful.

And the carrier believes enterprises will go for the idea because it'll be easy to add, drop, and update their service portfolios easily as their requirements change.

"The theme is simplicity, with a focus on selling an SLA [service level agreement], not technology," stated Finnie.

So does this multiservice, unified services box already exist? Or is it something Interoute is searching for among the vendor community?

Not at all. Finnie already has the kit he needs -- the Juniper Networks Inc. (NYSE: JNPR) J Series enterprise routers, for which Interoute is now developing auto-configuration capabilities to make deployment even easier.

That choice ties in with Interoute's broader infrastructure equipment choice. Juniper's MX960 is Interoute's Carrier Ethernet switch router of choice: The operator has just expanded its network by deploying the MX960 in more European cities, including Amsterdam, Berlin, Bratislava, Budapest, Frankfurt, London, Madrid, Milan, Paris, Prague, and Stockholm, to cope with the ongoing rise in IP traffic, which is doubling every 12 months. (See Interoute Boosts Its Capacity.)

— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

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