C&W to spend millions to boost it Internet spot

Cable & Wireless USA plans to pump $US670 million into a new US Internet network in a bid to secure the top spot as a facilities-based provider of Internet communications to consumers and businesses of all sizes.

During the next two years, the new Cable & Wireless USA Internet network will link more than 60 US metropolitan areas using transmission equipment for OC-192 speeds, or transmission rates of 9.6G/bits/sec, according to Cable & Wireless officials. The company's existing networks have transmission speeds of OC-12 or OC-48, the company said.

Cable & Wireless USA will buy M40 routers from high-speed router start-up Juniper Networks and ForeRunner ASX 4000 ATM switches from Fore Systems.

The company will secure 15,000 miles of dark (unused) fibre across the US and will build more than 50 facilities to accommodate the new network, company officials said. The network will let Cable & Wireless manage Internet, data, voice and messaging communications traffic on a single network.

The network is slated for completion in mid 2001, although segments will be brought online as they are finished, according to company officials. Additionally, the network will tie into networks in Europe and the Asia-Pacific region operated by the company's British parent, Cable & Wireless, officials said.

Cable & Wireless, in London, can be reached at www.cwplc.com.

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