Wavelengths 'the future' of network-based transport services

22 April 2003 Boston, Mass. Lightwave Europe--Current product offerings and much industry analysis is only hinting at carriers' potential to change optical networking in general and transport solutions in particular. So says the new report from Yankee Group, entitled Carrier Net Managers Discuss SMP Services.

22 April 2003 Boston, Mass.--Current product offerings and much industry analysis is only hinting at carriers' potential to change optical networking in general and transport solutions in particular. So says the new report from Yankee Group, entitled Carrier Net Managers Discuss SMP Services.

To understand how carriers are thinking about future wavelength applications, Yankee Group interviewed network managers at eight major carriers about shared-mesh protection (SMP) services--a next-generation network solution supported by wavelengths.

Using today's wavelength services as a starting point, the Yankee Group sought to understand carriers' perspectives on SMP services, including their overall interest in the services, why they like or dislike them, how they envision using or offering the services, when they expect to deploy them, and which firms they believe will make the best customers for the services.

"Our findings conclude that despite the best efforts of a few carriers, SMP services will not attain commercial viability within the next 2 years," says Seth Libby, Yankee Group Wholesale Communications Services senior analyst.

"Technical challenges remain an obstacle, but equally problematic is reduced capex spending by carriers and the growing reluctance of transport customers to try any new services in these uncertain times."

Additional report findings include:
Despite skepticism about the present technical feasibility and commercial viability of SMP services, a majority of the interviewees believed there eventually would be market demand for SMP services.

SMP services will follow a growth path similar to wavelengths, emerging first in the long-haul market segment and supporting carriers' internal operational needs before gradually evolving into commercial and metro offerings.

The expected complexity of SMP services means that initial customer interest will be confined squarely within the community of major carriers.

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