The result comes from a study, published Thursday, that Fujitsu commissioned from Network Strategy Partners LLC (which, incidentally, just got acquired by ACG Research ).
Ethernet Tag Switching is a combination of Ethernet standards that Fujitsu developed a few years ago as a transport option on the Flashwave 9500 packet-optical system. The study says that this brew comes with lower costs than MPLS-TP in areas such as training, troubleshooting and OSS integration.
Mostly, that's because operators' transport teams are more accustomed to Ethernet, says Ralph Santitoro, Fujitsu's director of carrier Ethernet market development.
Why this matters
Ethernet Tag Switching got kind of obscured by the fight between MPLS-TP and Provider Backbone Bridging - Traffic Engineering (PBB-TE), but Fujitsu apparently wants to boost the technology's visibility as an option for Ethernet transport. The company is going to need plenty of ammo, considering MPLS-TP has some momentum and the support of big vendors -- Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO), Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) and, despite the dustup over operations, administration and maintenance (OAM), Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. .
Fujitsu's pitch emphasizes that MPLS's multi-service aspects are wasted in an all-Ethernet milieu. Moreover, transport personnel already have Ethernet experience, whereas MPLS would be alien -- hence the heftier training costs.
If those arguments gain ground, it could mean more competition for MPLS, which would be more trouble than the OAM disagreements. Fujitsu claims it's got one large service provider in North America that's deploying Ethernet Tag Switching nationwide; Santitoro wouldn't give a name, but Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) would be a good guess, given its chumminess with Fujitsu's Flashwave 9500.
Our ongoing coverage of fun and games with MPLS-TP:
- Fujitsu's Tag Switching Saves Opex
- MPLS-TP Camp States Its OAM Case
- MPLS-TP Still on the Brink
- Ethernet Europe 2011: Where's the Innovation?
- Cisco Asks for MPLS Unity
- ITU Picks an MPLS Standard
- MPLS Argument Leads to Split Standard
- MPLS-TP Could Be Headed for a Split
- Rumor: T-MPLS Group Gets Shouted Down
- MPLS-TP Delays Keep T-MPLS Alive
- Fujitsu Backs PBB-TE
- Fujitsu Confirms Verizon Packet Optical Win
— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading