Tellabs Gets Edgy With Ethernet
Tellabs, with its multiservice transport products, has been building a reputation as a key player in the wireless backhaul market, which is in the early throes of a migration from legacy TDM services to Ethernet services. That trend has attracted a lot of interest from some of the industry's biggest names. (See AlcaLu Plugs Its Backhaul Hole, Cisco Raises Ethernet Backhaul Stakes, and ECI Targets Wireless Backhaul, OSS.)
With its foot in the door of one of the key growth areas for transport and carrier Ethernet equipment providers, Tellabs is now taking the next step into the dedicated Ethernet platform market, where there's plenty of action already. (See Carrier Ethernet Still Ramping and Carrier Ethernet Thunder: ESE & CESR.)
The first family member to be launched will be the 7345 Ethernet Aggregation Switch. It's a two-rack unit (RU) box that can aggregate traffic from up to 48 lines (of up to 1 Gbit/s each) into 10 Gbit/s Ethernet backhaul connections with inbuilt redundancy and a range of operations, administration, and maintenance (OA&M) functions, including provisioning and monitoring.
Tellabs informs Light Reading that the switch has been designed with connection-oriented Ethernet services in mind, as it's "designed to support a migration to PBB, PBB-TE, and MPLS-TP," and that the new product line has been developed totally in house. (See Transport MPLS Gets a Makeover and A Guide to PBT/PBB-TE.)
The box, pictured below, is targeted at operators looking to backhaul enterprise, fixed broadband, and mobile data traffic.
The move makes sense, reckons Heavy Reading senior analyst Stan Hubbard, as Tellabs had only some pieces of the Ethernet infrastructure puzzle. "You pretty much need a next-gen carrier Ethernet switch/router solution set if you are a sizable network-equipment supplier," noted the Ethernet market expert.
Hubbard also believes that the initial launch of an aggregation box that sits close to fixed and wireless access networks and business user premises is the first step towards the launch of a high-capacity carrier Ethernet switch for carrier metro networks, a move that would pitch Tellabs against the likes of (take a deep breath) Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU), Ciena Corp. (NYSE: CIEN), Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO), ECI Telecom Ltd. , Extreme Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: EXTR), Foundry Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: FDRY), Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. , Juniper Networks Inc. (NYSE: JNPR), Nokia Networks , Nortel Networks Ltd. , Redback Networks Inc. , and Tejas Networks India Ltd.
Tellabs declined to comment on whether that would be its next move. In an email to Light Reading, a company spokeswoman stated only that it would be "announcing additional 7300 series systems throughout 2009, and for competitive reasons we cannot give further details at this stage." She added that the company addresses the high-capacity carrier Ethernet switch market currently with its 8800 multiservice router series. As it is, Tellabs is pitting itself against an experienced group of carrier Ethernet practitioners, including ANDA Networks Inc. , ADVA Optical Networking , Ceterus Networks Inc. , Ciena, Foundry, MRV Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: MRVC), Overture Networks Inc. , and RAD Data Communications Ltd. , by launching into the aggregation sector. (See Foundry Plays PBB Card, ANDA Adds 10-Gig Demarc, RAD Plays Ethernet Test Role, MRV Joins Test, RAD Joins Backhaul Interop, and RAD Tackles HSDPA Transport.)
— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading