September 10, 2002 -- According to Probe Research, the global metro optical market is anticipated to decline 36% from 2001 to year-end 2002. Probe's data suggests a minor improvement in 2003 for the metro portion of the market with growth only slowly beginning in 2004. The research firm does not expect the metro market to bounce back fully until 2007.
"The metro market has been one of the few bright spots in optical networking," comments Maria Zeppetella, vice president of optical infrastructure markets. "While vendors are posting first quarter sales figures that are a fraction of what they posted a year ago, we see stronger sales for metro systems than for long-haul. Long-haul continues to be in a more severe slump, as carriers clearly overbuilt those networks and have more than sufficient capacity at the present time."
Zeppetella cites traffic demand trends and decreases in capital expenditures as significant factors contributing to the state of the metro optical market. She also feels it is being dramatically affected by a number of events, including the financial instability of carriers and subsequent consolidation, the demise of optical vendor startups and consolidation among equipment vendors, lack of trust by investors in both telecom service providers and equipment vendors, and carriers' inabilities to offer profitable data services.
Probe's research focuses on metro SONET/SDH, digital crossconnect systems, and metro wavelength division multiplexing. To obtain more information, visit www.proberesearch.com.