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Optical/IP

Cisco Makes Noise in 100G

Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) has completed a trial of coherent 100Gbit/s dense wavelength-division multiplexing (DWDM), the first salvo out of an apparently rejuvenated optical division.

US Signal announced Thursday that it completed the trial using the Cisco ONS 15454 on a span from Kalamazoo, Mich., to Chicago, running on fiber originally intended for 10Gbit/s.

Cisco picked up coherent technology through the acquisition of CoreOptics last year.

Why this matters
Cisco is serious about optical again. The company is coming off of a year of market-share gains and is now affirming that it's going to use CoreOptics for more than router interfaces.

That could have interesting implications in an optical systems market where "Other" is still the dominant player. Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU) and Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. have market shares in the 20 percent range, but Cisco has suddenly made itself relevant in the next tier, as this chart from Infonetics Research Inc. shows.

For more
Here's some background on Cisco's optical ambitions -- and an oldie but goodie about how the company once considered exiting optical networking.

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

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Phil Morrison 12/5/2012 | 4:48:18 PM
re: Cisco Makes Noise in 100G

No one is ignoring Cisco's optical business. The rule of thumb at Cisco is that to be involved in a line of business (ie Optical) that it needs to amount to $1B of revenue within a couple of years. Granted this isn't always the case.


For me it's a question of on again off again focus. If you go back to 2006 you'll see a very interesting thread on the  ONS 15454


furious_george 12/5/2012 | 4:48:19 PM
re: Cisco Makes Noise in 100G

" If so, they now have a $1B/year optical business.  Hard to ignore that."


$1B / $43.2 B = 2.3% of revenue; using their most recent fiscal year

thehill 12/5/2012 | 4:48:19 PM
re: Cisco Makes Noise in 100G

Last time I checked, only ALU actually has shipped a single carrier 100G coherent.  Ciena is 2x50G and Infinera is 10x10G.  I think everyone else is in trial/marketing mode: Huawei, NSN, Fujitsu, ECI, and Infinera (500G).


Cisco bought CoreOptics a little over a year ago signalling that they are committed to Optical.  I think they finally realized that they have an optical group and that as IP and Optical get faster and closer together that things like DSPs, ASICs, and DWDM are key to building the next network.


Time will tell if they can keep up the Q3 performance.  If so, they now have a $1B/year optical business.  Hard to ignore that.


hill

Phil Morrison 12/5/2012 | 4:48:22 PM
re: Cisco Makes Noise in 100G

Hold up Cisco isn't new to the Optical world.  The fact that they've been quiet is because they didn't seem all that committed to the business.  Most of the serious players have had 100G coherent for sometime now.


Replacing Tellabs on the pie chart isn't exactly a miracle for 3Q2011.

Mark Sebastyn 12/5/2012 | 4:48:32 PM
re: Cisco Makes Noise in 100G

The data represents a single quarter snapshot in time, and it was a good Q for Cisco.

jes 12/5/2012 | 4:48:34 PM
re: Cisco Makes Noise in 100G

The chassis seen in SCTE booth could either be the 15454 M6 (6 line card slot) or 15454 M2 (2 LC slot) chassis. Cisco expanded the optical portfolio ~2 yrs back with these new DWDM chassis which supports most of the older cards which 15454 MSTP used to support. 


This addition helped to make sure they have different size chassis across various markets. Helps in cutting costs !!!


Defanitely encourging news for Cisco  -finally they are seeing the traction .. ROADM business was always strong for Cisco...


 

thehill 12/5/2012 | 4:48:35 PM
re: Cisco Makes Noise in 100G

Good point.  I remember that CoreOptics was selling their 10G MLSE to many vendors and had also sold 40G coherent to NSN and Fujitsu.  


http://www.lightwaveonline.com...


If the 40G is working for Fujitsu and NSN, I imagine it also works for Cisco as they own it.  Maybe someone who is using Cisco's 40G either directly or indirectly (NSN or FNC) will chime in.


Also, this week Cisco had their 100G coherent in their booth at SCTE running in a small chassis (not the legacy Cerent shelf).  I could not see it up close, but it looked like the 100G line card was only 1 slot including the client.  If true, that is really small.


maybe some Cisco customers will chime in to put these guess to rest.


 


hill

laytonhasnochance 12/5/2012 | 4:48:35 PM
re: Cisco Makes Noise in 100G

That's providing their 40g and 100g systems work effectively. I don't believe core optics are shipping either?  Did it not say 100g was simply a trial. Not sure about their 40g status.

thehill 12/5/2012 | 4:48:36 PM
re: Cisco Makes Noise in 100G

Did some quick research.  Infonetics has been tracking Cisco at #3 or #4 in SONET MSPP in North America for years now.  Also, Cisco has been either #1, #2, or #3 in Metro DWDM ROADM since 2004.  I imagine, like others that their SONET business is flat, but all boats are rising in the ROADM tide.  I think Cisco has been quietly winning ROADM business for years and now will fill those networks with 40G and 100G coherent from their CoreOptics team.  If you even go to the Cisco website and search for optical you actually see they have a ton of ROADM, service cards and chassis options.  Who knew?  Somehow they did this very quietly.


thehill

laytonhasnochance 12/5/2012 | 4:48:37 PM
re: Cisco Makes Noise in 100G

Something wrong with this pie. How can cisco who were optically invisible have the same worldwide optical revenues Ciena has just by buying core opitcs, a virtual unknown? Either the pie data is skewed, or cisco became an incumbent for optical products due to other products they already had with customers when they bought core optics. Does not compute.  Where are all these sales Cisco is making optically. Big players or a number of small players who simply have cisco gear to start with?

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