Verizon Gears Up for 100 Gig
By the end of this year, Verizon wants to put 100-Gbit/s gear through its paces on its long-haul transport network for an initial deployment in its Sonet and SDH systems. Verizon will trial the equipment between its video headends in its FiOS network.
The timeline may surprise some. At a press event today, Verizon officials described the network capacity upgrade plans as a "very aggressive goal" and "about a year ahead of anyone else." (See AT&T VP: 100-Gig by 2010.)
It's further evidence that carriers are seriously considering the leap to 100 Gbit/s. There have even been whispers of some carriers bypassing 40 Gbit/s to get there, although Verizon says that's not the case here. (See Optical Expo-sed and 100-Gig Chases 40-Gig.)
"We're upgrading our network to 40 Gbit/s, but we will go to 100 Gbit/s as soon as possible and we hope to deploy early next year," says Fred Briggs, executive vice president for network operations and technology at Verizon. (See Verizon Pumps 40G.)
"We see 100 Gbit/s as the fundamental building stone in our network," he adds.
Among optical suppliers, Briggs says Verizon has been looking at Ciena Corp. (NYSE: CIEN), Nokia Networks , Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU), Nortel Networks Ltd. , and six or seven others. (See AlcaLu Claims Optical Record, Nortel Works Some Optical Wins, and AlcaLu Pushes the Optical Envelope.)
Verizon's primary optical networking suppliers are Alcatel-Lucent, Ciena, and Nokia Siemens Networks.
"We're close to selecting one [vendor] for the trial," Briggs says. "But that's not necessarily the one we'll sign a contract with."
Briggs explains that the trial will "prove that we can do 100 Gbit/s and test it in our network."
The need for more capacity in the transport network is driven by the demand for Ethernet services, says Briggs.
"The drive for [more capacity] is Ethernet as more companies are moving to multiple 10-Gbit/s Ethernet circuits," he says. "We're seeing amazing growth in bandwidth -- good, solid, sustainable growth."
— Michelle Donegan, European Editor, Light Reading
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