SAN MATEO (03/31/2000) - Internet backbone carriers UUNet Technologies Inc. and Cable & Wireless PLC this week jumped at the chance to tout supercharged OC192c or 10Gbps speeds between major hubs.
The carriers were among the first to incorporate Juniper Networks Inc.'s new router, the M160 injected with MPLS (Multi Protocol Label Switching) technology on their meganetworks carrying Internet traffic.
Although most relevant to ISPs, the carriers' moves to speedier backbones represent to enterprise customers the hope that they will be able to maintain SLAs (service-level agreements) while continuing to pack traffic on those networks.
"This will give us the ability to keep scaling the network and to keep delivering the service quality we have promised to deliver in SLAs," said Mike O'Dell, senior vice president and chief scientist at UUNet Technologies, an MCI WorldCom company in Fairfax, Virginia.
"We are seeing the start of the demand for an OC192c product like the M160," said Analyst Jennifer Pigg, executive vice president at the Yankee Group in Boston. "The demands on the network overall are becoming increasingly problematic for the carriers to manage. It is not just overall throughput, but also the footprint in their data centers."
The M160 router can support eight 10Gbps circuits, a four-fold speed bump from Juniper's previous offering. Competitors such as Cisco and Avici have high-speed routers in beta testing, but analysts said that Juniper's M160 is the first with OC192c interfaces to market in a production-ready network.
"People are deploying optical gear that does 10Gb optical connections," said Joe Furgerson, Juniper's vice president of marketing. "This is the first data device to take full advantage of the breakthroughs in optics."
UUNet initially plans to light up OC-192c circuits between Chicago, New York, and Washington, and add others later. Cable & Wireless will start with its Washington and New York points of presence.
Juniper Networks Inc., in Mountain View, Calif., can be reached at www.juniper.net. UUNet Technologies Inc. can be reached at www.uunet.com. Cable & Wireless PLC, in Vienna, Va., can be reached at www.cableandwireless.com.