Zayo ramps fiber, 400G, IP network capabilities

July 25, 2023
Zayo says its new long-haul dark fiber, capacity adds and 400G-enabled routes in development will enable customers to obtain grand scale and security.

Zayo continues to advance its network capabilities. The service provider recently announced various expansions to its fiber network, including new long-haul dark fiber routes, increased fiber capacity for existing courses, additional 400 Gbps (400G)-enabled routes and new IP points of presence (PoPs).

These latest network enhancements are part of Zayo’s long-term vision.

“The network our future requires does not exist today,” said Bill Long, Chief Product Officer at Zayo. “A digital-first world requires continued and intentional investment in infrastructure, of which Zayo is leading the charge.”

Ramping dark fiber

Dark fiber continues to be an option for carriers needing to expand out of the region and large business customers. Dark fibers, also known as unlit fiber, are fiber optic cables laid underground and do not have service or traffic running on the fiber strands.

On the dark fiber side, Zayo unveiled significant plans to grow and modernize its network, including the addition of nearly 3,000 route miles and more than 700,000 fiber miles to its global network in April.

Zayo has begun building these new long-haul dark fiber routes to provide its customers with diverse routing options and a customizable network. The new roads are built entirely underground to ensure security and redundancy.

Zayo’s newest long-haul dark fiber routes include:

St. Louis to Indianapolis: Expands connectivity in these growing markets, bypassing the heavily trafficked Chicago metro area with four In-Line Amplification (ILA) sites in key markets along the route.

Chicago to Omaha Overbuild: Provides the most direct route between Denver and Chicago, including a new high fiber count cable that connects 11 ILA sites in strategic markets, facilitating seamless network connections for customers. As a heavily used route, this overbuild will allow for more capacity.

Building up 400G, IP

In tandem with expanding the availability of dark fiber, Zayo is also enhancing its network to support 400G and new IP capabilities. 

The new 400G routes provide what Zayo says is better routing performance, stability, high bandwidth and reduced pricing. Additionally, the enhanced capacity from these routes supports customers with exponential growth needs driven by emerging technologies like 5G, generative AI, cloud adoption, IoT and edge computing.

Having made new 400G-enabled routes made operational in the second quarter of 2023 and two more slated for completion in the third quarter, Zayo is expanding high-bandwidth options between key cities, including:

·       Las Vegas to Phoenix

·       Kansas City to Indianapolis

·       Dallas to East St Louis

·       Albany to Boston

·       Denver to Dallas (a direct route scheduled for completion in Q3 2023)

·       Atlanta to DC (scheduled for completion in Q3 2023)

To enhance the overall customer experience, Zayo has bolstered its infrastructure with new IP PoPs that ensure a more seamless and uninterrupted communication experience. Zayo has added 14 neutral data centers in Q1 and nine in Q2 across North America.

Another critical consideration is Zayo’s growing presence in the middle mile market. In June, Zayo was awarded a $92.9M grant from the National Telecommunications and Information (NTIA) Middle Mile Program. It will use this funding to serve unserved and underserved communities across eight states. As part of its aggressive growth strategy, Zayo has continued expanding its global footprint, including new connections for its high-capacity network across EuropeMexico, and South America.

“Our continued expansion and modernization of our long-haul dark fiber, wavelength, and Tier-1 IP infrastructure is critical in ensuring our customers have the speed, resilience and flexibility they need in their network to stay ahead of this increasing digital demand,” Long said. 

For related articles, visit the Optical Tech Topic Center.

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About the Author

Sean Buckley

Sean is responsible for establishing and executing the editorial strategies of Lightwave and Broadband Technology Report across their websites, email newsletters, events, and other information products.

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