Many of the network equipment vendors at the Supercomm show in Chicago are talking about delivering voice, video and data over a single telephone line -- the so-called "triple play." But while the goal is to bring these disparate services together on a single delivery platform, each of the vendors has their own way of doing it.
Nortel Networks said Metro Ethernet is the way for service providers to reduce the costs and technical difficulties inherent in delivering triple-play services. It upgraded its Metro Ethernet Routing Switch 8600 and added the Metro Ethernet Services Unit 1850 to its range. These devices allow delivery of voice, video or data over any port, and can securely segregate traffic for up to 4,000 subscribers, the company said. The same infrastructure can also deliver VOIP (voice over Internet Protocol) telephony, Internet access and IPTV (IP television) services over the same infrastructure, it said. The 1850 is designed for backhaul of broadband services such as DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) and can handle up to 12 copper or fiber Gigabit Ethernet lines. Up to 14 of them can be connected in a ring around one 8600 to deliver services across a metropolitan area.
Metrobility Optical Systems announced a device for delivering triple-play services to businesses. Its Ethernet Services Provisioning Platform (ESPP) can be remotely provisioned and managed using either SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) or the IEEE 802.3ah OAM (Ethernet over The First Mile Operation and Maintenance) standard for local-loop equipment. The device is also suitable for aggregating services to different clients in multitenant units, and will begin shipping late this year, the company said.
Juniper Networks will showcase what it says is the highest-capacity broadband router on the market, its E320 Broadband Services Router. This can handle up to 128,000 subscribers, or 100G bps (bits per second) to 320G bps of capacity, and is designed for triple-play services, the company said.
Zyxel Communications is focusing on the end of the triple-play chain. It will demonstrate a cordless phone, the Prestige 2000W v2, which connects to the Internet via Wi-Fi wireless networks in order to place VOIP calls. It also offers a video phone and a broadband terminal.
Telco Systems will introduce a Gigabit Ethernet ring system carriers can use to deploy triple-play and metropolitan access services, it said. The ring structure allows it to recover from network outages in as little as 15 milliseconds, it said. Failure recovery times are comparable with those of Sonet (Synchronous Optical Network) carrier systems, it said.
The bandwidth and timing requirements of video make it the deciding factor when customers are judging service quality, according to Spirent Communications Inc. Spirent will be showing how a series of 20 test scenarios it has developed can help service providers improve triple-play service quality. With its test systems, it can conduct tests in the lab, before deployment, or in the field after deployment of a network, it said.