In a recent study by Infonetics Research (www.infonet
ics.com) to determine the data network evolution plans and router and switch requirements of service providers in North America, Europe, and Asia Pacific, the increasing importance of Ethernet features prominently.
As carriers transform their networks in an effort to simplify network layers, use fewer technologies, build a more cost-efficient infrastructure, and move to all-packet, a new optical transport layer will emerge, say analysts. This layer will fuse Ethernet-WDM packet transport with circuit-like capabilities via Ethernet transport tunnels, also known as COE or connection-oriented Ethernet.
The service layer above the Ethernet-WDM transport will be simplified to IP/MPLS/Ethernet, and carriers will gradually reduce their dependence on SONET and SDH in transport and on ATM in service layers, while increasing their use of Ethernet in the service and transport layers, says the study. This means a growing IP router and carrier Ethernet switch market.
â��COE... transport tunnel technologies like T-MPLS and PBT are seeing strong adoption given their early stage of development and will be an essential ingredient of the service and optical transport layers, as they allow the displacement of SONET/SDH and enable carrier Ethernet switches to displace some routers,â�� explains Michael Howard, principal analyst at Infonetics Research.
Other highlights from Infoneticsâ�� study, â��Service Provider Plans for IP/MPLS,â�� include the following:
- Top applications driving data traffic include broadband, metro Ethernet services, VoIP, and IPTV.
- Service providers report 90--100% increases in Ethernet traffic in 2006 and in 2007, and 70--80% increases for IP/MPLS traffic.
- Reliability continues to be the No. 1 criterion respondents use in selecting an IP router and switch manufacturer.