And they increasingly look to be more than ripples, following BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA)’s well publicized endorsement in mid 2006 of the technology in its massive next-generation network project, the 21CN, and growing industry support for a standard. (See BT Likes Nortel's New Ethernet Flavor and Cisco Tracks PBT Standards Process).
So a good round 60 percent of service-provider respondents to a poll in the Light Reading Webinar on which this report is based said they would consider using PBT for two or more of the following metro applications: business E-line or E-LAN services, residential triple-play services, and wireless backhaul.
But uncertainty abounds. Only about a quarter of the respondents thought that PBT could replace Sonet/SDH equipment or enhance carrier Ethernet with traffic-engineering capabilities; and only 40 percent thought it would be cheaper than the current favorite technology for converged metro networks – MPLS.
Certainly, PBT’s protagonists are promising good things from the technology. In particular, they say that:
- PBT provides an opportunity to radically "de-layer" the metro.
- It eliminates concerns about Ethernet viability in carrier networks.
- It equips Ethernet to step up to a bigger role in the network.
- It appears to have capex and opex advantages that make it attractive to some carriers.
Here’s a hyperlinked contents list:
- Page 2 – PBT: Why the Fuss?
- Page 3 – PBT: Foundations
- Page 4 – PBT: How It Works
- Page 5 – Question 1: Is PBT Standardized?
- Page 6 – Question 2: What Problems Could PBT Solve?
- Page 7 – Question 3: How Does PBT Compare to Alternatives?
- Page 8 – Question 4: Will There Be a Showdown With MPLS?
This report is based on a Webinar, Ethernet’s Core Question: The Case for PBT, moderated by Simon Sherrington, Independent Consultant, on behalf of Light Reading, and sponsored by Extreme Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: EXTR) and Nortel Networks Ltd. . An archive of the Webinar may be viewed free of charge by clicking here.
Related Webinar archives:
- Ethernet Over MPLS: Technology Update
- Using Advanced MPLS Pseudowire Features & SOA-Based Provisioning to Achieve Network Convergence
- Using Metro Ethernet to Deliver Triple-Play Services
- Carrier Ethernet Services Over Access Networks
- Metro Ethernet Performance Management Challenges & Solutions
- Using Metro Ethernet to Deliver FTTH Triple-Play Services
PBT's Carrier Ethernet Appeal, Simon Sherrington, Analyst, Light Reading
— Tim Hills is a freelance telecommunications writer and journalist. He's a regular author of Light Reading reports.
Next Page: PBT: Why the Fuss?