ECI Telecom has unveiled a series of five Native Packet Transport (NPT) platforms, designed to better address the transition from legacy-based TDM networks to packet-based infrastructures than more generic multiservice provisioning platforms (MSPPs).
With mixed packet and legacy networks “here to stay” in ECI’s estimation, the Native Packet Transport platforms (not to be confused with Transmode’s Native Packet Optical platforms) are designed to support packet-based services via MPLS-TP and TDM-based services via a combination of native TDM and Circuit Emulation Services (CES). According to Gil Epshtein, product marketing manager at ECI, the combination of these three approaches provides significant savings in total cost of ownership (TCO) over other alternatives. For example, Epshtein referenced an ACG Research study that showed that MPLS-TP offers a 55% reduction in TCO versus IP/MPLS for pure packet transmission in the metro applications at which ECI has aimed the NPT systems. The TCO savings increase when MPLS-TP and native TDM are combined in comparison to IP/MPLS and CES, according to ACG Research. However, ECI believes that CES support is necessary for true packet convergence, and therefore has offered both native TDM and CES support on the NPT systems.
The NPT series, part of ECI’s Optimized Multi-Layer Transport (OMLT) architecture, includes five platforms (in ascending order of capacity):
The NPT-1600 and -1600C are currently available and have been “selected” by customers, Epshtein said. The NPT-1200 should be available in the first quarter of 2013, with the other two platforms following in 2Q13.
Operators can manage the series under the LightSoft network management system, which ECI says offers a unified multi-layer management system for MPLS, WDM, and TDM. To ease management of the packet-based services the NPT platforms will support, ECI has extended LightSoft with the new Easy Data Management Suite (EDMS). The company also offers consulting, planning, and network design services via its 1Net services suite.
“Network operators are pressed to support a growing portfolio of packet-based services, while continuing to support existing TDM services,” commented Rick Talbot, senior analyst, transport and routing at market research firm Current Analysis, via an ECI press release. “ECI’s Native Packet Transport solution uses centralized packet and TDM switching fabrics to efficiently accommodate all service types, and leverages MPLS-TP to simplify end-to-end provisioning and management, providing relief for both capex and opex.”
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