Alcatel-Lucent unveils 7950 XRS core routers
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Ovum: Bad first quarter for optical network hardware sales
Putting an exclamation mark on market figures Infonetics Research announced last week (see "Infonetics: Optical network spending slips 23% in 1Q12"), Ovum says that optical network (ON) hardware sales in the first quarter of 2012 showed a year-over-year decline of 9%. This is the first such year-on-year decline for the space in almost two years, says Ovum in its recently released Market Share Alert: 1Q12 Global ON.In addition to the year-ago declines, annualized spending on optical network gear shrank by $300 million (about 2%) sequentially, Ovum says. This retreat is equal to a third of the gains the segment saw all of last year, according to the market research firm.Sales slipped globally, with declines particularly acute in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA). That region saw a year-over-year reduction of 15%.Ovum analysts believe companies and investors should not be heading for the exits yet, however. “Preliminary results for 1Q12 indicate more a cause for concern than a cause for panic,” says Dana Cooperson, practice leader of Ovum’s Network Infrastructure practice. “While 1Q sales are typically lower than 4Q sales, actual spending last year overshot our $14.9 billion forecast when results in Asia-Pacific and Europe were less negative than we predicted.”However, that expected weakness may have just been delayed until 1Q12, Ovum theorizes, particularly in light of the weak European economy. “Also 4Q/1Q market seasonality is becoming more pronounced as spending and spending growth shifts to Asia-Pacific and South and Central America, in which case sales should rebound more than is typical in 2Q12,” comments Cooperson.In fact, Cooperson and Ovum continue to believe that the space overall will grow 4% in 2012, ringing up $16.2 billion.The first-quarter slump hit market leaders Huawei and Alcatel-Lucent particularly hard. Huawei saw its worst quarterly revenue figures since 3Q07, while Alcatel-Lucent reached a low point it hadn’t seen since 2005, Ovum asserts. Nevertheless, not every company suffered during the first three months of the year. NEC saw strong sales in its home market, rising 0.4 share points; its quarterly WDM sales were the strongest in its history. Cisco saw strong year-over-year revenue growth in North America, Asia-Pacific (specifically Japan), and South and Central America. And even Huawei's cloud had a silver lining, in that its year-over-year results beat the quarterly market average globally and in EMEA. Thus, Huawei still managed to increase its market share.
IFN taps Ciena for packet-optical upgrade
Ciena Corp. (NASDAQ: CIEN) says Indiana Fiber Network (IFN) will deploy Ciena’s 5430 Packet-Optical Reconfigurable Switching System (RSS) and OneConnect Intelligent Control Plane software to expand the capacity and service flexibility of its backbone network, and provide assured service delivery.IFN is a statewide fiber-optic network owned by a consortium of 20 independent telephone companies, and comprises more than 2,400 miles of fiber-optic cable that interconnects eight metro ring networks and 23 points of presence serving more than 3,300 on/near-net locations. Customers include enterprise businesses, government entities, educational and healthcare institutions, as well as independent telephone company members, who use the network for the aggregation and transport of residential local and long-distance calls, Internet access, and video services.The enhanced OTN-switched network will support the aggregation, transport, and management of voice, video, and data services to business and service provider customers. It will also provide differentiated service offerings and simplified service creation capabilities through point-and-click provisioning, therefore creating bandwidth-on-demand services that can be delivered in minutes, Ciena says.Ciena’s 5430 is a modular packet-optical platform that will serve as aggregation switches, delivering regionalized OTN and Ethernet traffic to key points in IFN’s network with speed and simplicity (see “Ciena intros modular approach to IP/optical networks”). Equipped with OneConnect control plane software, the 5430 switches will also provide IFN with the ability to automate provisioning and management of its network, while mesh restoration will improve network resiliency and service availability.Combined with Ciena’s 4200 Advanced Services Platform, which has already been deployed in the network, IFN can support customers’ growing broadband demands and data center connectivity requirements via a scalable, dynamic, and reconfigurable infrastructure, Ciena asserts.Later this year, IFN also plans to deploy Ciena’s 5410 Reconfigurable Switching System to enable efficient aggregation, grooming, and forwarding of multiple traffic types in metro and regional sites.Ciena Specialist Services is providing solution installation, turn-up and testing, along with migration services.“Our recent upgrade is designed to create an intelligent, automated network that can adapt to the diverse service requirements of our customer base – including both member companies and businesses – and be monitored, managed and reprogrammed remotely from our network operations center,” said Jerry Haver, planning and engineering manager, IFN.
Alcatel-Lucent unveils 7950 XRS core routers
Alcatel-Lucent (Euronext and NYSE: ALU) has taken the wraps off its entry in the large-scale core router market. The 7950 XRS (Extensible Routing System) family, based on the company’s highly touted FP3 400-Gbps chipset, offers 32-Tbps capacity and 160 ports of 100-Gigabit Ethernet in the top of the line incarnation, the 7950 XRS-40.The 7950 XRS family has three members:The 7950 XRS-40, which in addition to the capacity figures mentioned above is designed to accommodate up to 2 terabits per slot. It can be upgraded to multi-chassis configurations to ensure continued growth as needed. It will be available in the first half of 2013. The 7950 XRS-20 is a 16-Tbps core router with support for eighty 100 Gigabit Ethernet interfaces in a single rack, which Alcatel-Lucent asserts is 5X more than the current norm. It can be upgraded to a 7950 XRS-40 and/or multi-chassis configuration, and also will accommodate up to 2 terabits per slot. It will be available in the third quarter of 2012 and is currently in several trials.The 7950 XRS-16c is a 6.4-Tbps core router, aimed at smaller points of presence (POPs)/nodes requiring maximum agility. It sports up to thirty-two 100 Gigabit Ethernet interfaces and is designed to accommodate 1 terabit per slot. It will be available in the first half of 2013.In addition to high capacity, the 7950 XRS line is designed to offer cost-effective operation. The platforms offer power savings of more than 66 percent versus typical core routers, the company asserts. The company is positioning the family at both IP backbone networks as well as regional and metro core networks.The 7950 XRS line also plays into Alcatel-Lucent’s IP/optical convergence strategy via the following features:support for transponder integration into the 7950 XRS at 10G, 40G, and 100G speeds efficient rooming of traffic from the IP layer into the optical transport network common management with the 5620 Service Aware Manager (SAM) platform an Optical Extension Shelf capability that integrates the 1830 Photonic Service Switch (PSS) with the 7950 XRS.Alcatel-Lucent emphasizes that the new routers are built to scale. The 7950 XRS backplane and optical interconnect are designed to handle slot capacities of 2 Tbps, multi-chassis clustering that enables the system to scale up to 240 Tbps in the future, as well as support 400 Gigabit Ethernet and 1-Tbps interfaces as they become available.The 7950 XRS routers will leverage Alcatel-Lucent’s existing Service Router Operating System (SR OS).The company rounded up several endorsements for the 750 XRS launch.“Verizon is experiencing tremendous growth in metro Ethernet services. Platforms such as the Alcatel-Lucent 7950 XRS will help us efficiently scale to support higher speeds and new capabilities while offering efficiency and flexibility,” said Ihab Tarazi, vice president of global IP and transport planning and technology, Verizon. “We applaud Alcatel-Lucent for its bold approach to router value and performance.”“The success of our broadband services worldwide is resulting in rapid traffic growth in our IP network. As we carry more traffic, we have to improve the power and space efficiency of our network infrastructure” said Fumio Ito, vice president, network services technology of NTT Communications. “We are pleased to see innovation from Alcatel-Lucent that brings enhancements to the IP network in terms that might be able to address our operational challenges and costs.”“BT is constantly improving our network to deliver new and better broadband services to our consumer and business customers” added Karl Penaluna, president, BT Global Networks and Systems. “We’ve been using Alcatel-Lucent’s 7750 Service Router for many years as part of the rollout of the 21CN program across the UK. As we deal with increasing traffic volumes and deliver the growth in cloud services from our data centers, we’ll need platforms for our national and metro core networks that scale to 100-Gigabit links and beyond. We’re also constantly seeking to reduce our physical footprint and power per bit, so we’re very encouraged to see Alcatel-Lucent meeting these challenges with the 7950 XRS.”
The above information is edited by 10GTEK.
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