Lucent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: LU) has become the second of at least three vendors set to help Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) bring out next-gen metro services.
Today, the vendor announced a three-year contract to supply Verizon with its LambdaUnite multiservice switch and Metropolis DMX portfolio of metro gear to the RBOC for use in Sonet and Ethernet services (see Verizon Picks Lucent Sonet ADMs). The products already are in use by Verizon, Lucent says, but no dollar figures were divulged.
Verizon spokesman Mark Marchand won't give details, either: But he says the Lucent deal is part of the same metro Sonet deployment touted by Fujitsu Network Communications Inc. (FNC) back in June (see FNC Lands Big Verizon Gig).
Apparently, the vendors are on a kind of progressive rollout schedule, and Fujitsu's gear just happened to be the first certified for use in the metro job. Nortel Networks Corp. (NYSE/Toronto: NT) also is believed to have been picked by Verizon. But Nortel won't comment, and Verizon hadn't confirmed at press time. Other suppliers could also be involved, but no one's ventured any names beyond these three.
Other details of Verizon's metro rollout are sketchy: It's not known, for instance, how the Verizon award has been divvied among suppliers. It's possible that one will provide gear for the central office, local loop, and CPE portions of the network, while others kit out just one or two of those areas. It's also not known whether the new services are being rolled out in Verizon's traditional territory or extended to other states where the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has extended Verizon's service rights.
It does, however, look as if Verizon's metro deployment is a reality and that equipment is being added to replace and extend the carrier's older Sonet network, which included gear from Fujitsu and Lucent, among others.
This metro deployment is not related to the nationwide IP network Verizon bid out in August (see Verizon Deal: Too Soon to Hope?). It's possible, though, that it could be larger than that one, which some have valued at close to $1 billion. Tom Nolle, president of CIMI Corp., a consultancy that has done work for Lucent, estimates that Verizon orders for metro gear could double or triple those of its long-haul network. Metro areas need more bandwidth and also have higher levels of operations personnel involved in hands-on "craft" work, he says.
— Mary Jander, Senior Editor, Light Reading