Alcatel enhances FTTU equipment, announces new customer

June 17, 2004 Dallas, TX -- Alcatel today announced enhancements to its fiber-to-the-user (FTTU) broadband passive optical network (BPON) portfolio as well as a new customer, Louisiana-based carrier EATEL.

June 17, 2004 Dallas, TX -- Alcatel today announced enhancements to its fiber-to-the-user (FTTU) broadband passive optical network (BPON) portfolio as well as a new customer, Louisiana-based carrier EATEL.

According to Alcatel, its 7340 FTTU was the first BPON standards compliant solution to reach the market. With a growing number of deployments in North America, such as SBC and Canada's Futureway, Alcatel is now shipping second-generation BPON hardware with operational enhancements and price/performance improvements.

The 7340 FTTU is optimized for growth in broadband/Internet Protocol (IP) services and can aggregate and groom communications traffic for ATM, IP, and voice networks.

Release 2.0 of the Alcatel FTTU solution includes a higher capacity switch fabric and higher capacity network interfaces and access interfaces. The enhanced capacity enables 100 Mbits/sec of throughput per subscriber, and the new interfaces provide flexibility for network interconnection with both IP and ATM core networks. Release 2.0 also includes a hardened Business ONT (B-ONT) for outdoor installation.

"Alcatel has come a long way in Fiber-to-the-User and has led the industry in technology innovations, standardization, and now mass deployment," contends Mike Dobbs, senior vice president of Alcatel's access networks activities in North America. "Our commitment has always been to deliver to our customers the best access network to give them a long-term strategic advantage."

Alcatel is working with third-party vendors to enhance interoperability and reduce network installation and operations costs. In North America, the Alcatel 5526 AMS management system supports Alcatel's access network product family, including the 7300 ASAM, Litespan-2000, and 7340 FTTU.

In a related announcement, Alcatel has signed a multi-million dollar contract to provide Louisiana-based carrier EATEL with the 7340 FTTU platform to deliver a full range of voice and data communications services. This is Alcatel's second FTTU deployment in Louisiana and the first with an incumbent operator in the state.

An incumbent communications carrier since 1935 and a CLEC in some of its coverage areas, EATEL serves 100,000 residential and business customers in Louisiana (Gonzales, Baton Rouge, Lafayette, Houma/Thibodeaux and New Orleans areas). EATEL is committed to FTTU and will deploy this network for all new construction developments. EATEL also plans to upgrade the existing copper connections in its network to fiber over time.

"Alcatel has designed an all-optical access solution that will enable us to offer any service mix that our customers demand, while realizing the benefits of increased reliability and lower maintenance expenses," reports Dan Ahern, president of EATEL "We look forward to working with Alcatel again, this time on FTTU," he adds.

Alcatel has multiple FTTU deployments in North America and has been involved in several FTTU field trials with operators in the Asia Pacific region.

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