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NTT America Boosts Aggregation Network

Craig Matsumoto
4/1/2010

NTT America Inc. , one of the carriers that's talked openly about needing a bandwidth upgrade, is boosting its aggregation network with ASR 9000 routers from Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO).

Cisco is announcing the news today. If it's some kind of April Fools joke, it's a really boring one.

The ASR 9000s will eventually succeed the Cisco 6509s that NTT America currently uses for aggregation.

Last fall, NTT America CTO Doug Junkins told Light Reading that his company needed to upgrade its core networks, preferably to something bigger than 100 Gbit/s per slot. The company now uses Juniper Networks Inc. (NYSE: JNPR) T1600s in the core. (See EENY: NTT America Wants More in the Core.)

For the core, NTT America is holding out for eventual 100-Gbit/s interfaces. But that's not stopping the carrier from expanding the aggregation network, where the key factor is the density of the 10-Gbit/s links. The new routers will feed growth and will pave the way for eventual 100-Gbit/s wholesale services, Junkins says.

"In the near term, we already have customers that are multiplexing more than ten 10-Gbit/s for their backbones."

Sticking with Cisco did mean changing operating systems, as the ASR line runs on IOS XR, but Junkins says the new operating system was "much more carrier-grade than some of the traditional operating systems on Ethernet platforms."

The ASR 9000 is well known for Cisco's boasts of carrying 400 Gbit/s per slot someday, and NTT America likes the sound of that, too. "The 400 Gbit/s per slot will carry us to the 2014 or 2015 kind of timeframe," Junkins says.

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

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