Metro Ethernet creates new opportunity for vendors; $4.4 billion seen in 2007

Propelled by service-provider demand, the market for metro Ethernet equipment will experience a compound annual growth rate of 39% over the next five years, increasing from its $837-million mark last year to $4.4 billion by 2007, predicts a new report from market researcher IDC (Framingham, MA).

"The metro Ethernet market is an enormous opportunity for vendors," suggests Sterling Perrin, senior research analyst in IDC's Optical Networks program. "Revenue and growth will be substantial and should attract the attention of any large telecommunications and networking suppliers looking for growth opportunities over the next five years."

Despite service-provider capital constraints, the metro Ethernet market will continue to grow, driven initially by large consumer services in Asia/Pacific. Though business-oriented services in North America and a mix of business- and consumer-oriented services in Europe will also drive deployments, IDC forecasts that by 2007, more than 60% of the revenue will come from the Asia-Pacific region.

A mix of optical and data communications equipment will contribute to the revenue total, including metro DWDM, SONET/SDH multiservice provisioning platforms, Layer 2 and 3 switches, and routers. According to IDC, Layer 2 and 3 switches will capture the biggest slice of the revenue pie—48%—in 2007. Metro WDM is projected to be the smallest contributor, garnering just 7% of the revenue by the end of the forecast period.

For more information on the report, "Worldwide Metro Ethernet Equipment Forecast and Analysis, 2003-2007," contact IDC at 508-988-7988 or visit

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