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100G Set as P-OTS Battleground in Edge Networks
Simon Sherrington | Analyst
Aggregation and edge transport networks are undergoing a wave of innovation.

Operators have been moving to upgrade their transport infrastructures with new packet-optical transport systems (P-OTS) equipment that is able to offer order of magnitude improvements over legacy transport systems.
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Competitive Analysis: P-OTS for Edge/Aggregation Networks
Aggregation and edge transport networks are undergoing a wave of innovation that is far bigger, and far more disruptive, than has been seen for years. Changes to networks are not just focused on cost and density, but reflect the near total change in services running over the top of them that has been witnessed in the past 10 to 15 years.

With new packet-optical transport systems (P-OTS) equipment able to offer order of magnitude improvements over legacy transport systems, many of which have been in place for 10 to 15 years, and a dwindling sales focus on the legacy TDM services for which those transport systems were designed, it is small wonder that operators have been moving to upgrade their transport infrastructures.

Packet-optical platforms have emerged as vendors have sought to find ways to help their customers migrate away from legacy transport networks based on Sonet/SDH aggregating TDM and Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) access circuits. These legacy infrastructures have become increasingly irrelevant and inefficient as Ethernet-based technologies have become dominant in both fixed and mobile access networks, and as the services flowing over the networks have become predominantly based on packet data.

Network operators have a wide choice of technology options when they consider packet-optical transport deployments. Most P-OTS are modular or offer a mix of form factors, as they are designed to enable an incremental and flexible approach toward transport networking. This reflects the reality that operators have not all wanted to abandon very large circuit-based transport network investments overnight.

The aggregation/edge market remains fragmented, with no single player dominating the P-OTS market. (Our estimates suggest a close race for the top three places in the market in terms of market share, and an even tighter race for positions 4 to 6.) No player has more than 15 percent market share.

The big global NEPs hold strong market share positions, but are rarely the first to market in terms of technology implementations. Access to a strong legacy customer base and a great migration story can be more powerful than access to the latest feature sets or the densest platforms.

Competitive Analysis: P-OTS for Edge/Aggregation Networks examines the vendors vying for market share of a sub-segment of the packet-optical market – namely the supply of network systems for edge/aggregation networks. This represents the largest portion of the market, and is set for swift technology change in the next couple of years. The report also looks at the range of packet-optical transport products the profiled vendors are offering, and the feature sets those products support. It uncovers vendors' differentiating strategies and unusual or unique selling points, assesses their market success (in the form of recent market share) and looks at how much buzz their products are getting in the market. It finally compares vendors by giving them an aggregate score across these categories.
Sample research data from the report is shown in the excerpts below:
Table of Contents (hri1014_toc.pdf)
P-OTS converge dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) transport, Sonet/SDH, large-scale packet switching and COE in a single chassis/device. Heavy Reading has created detailed definitions for metro core/regional, edge/aggregation and access P-OTS for its reports. The following excerpt shows how edge/aggregation P-OTS fits into the wider technology ecosystem.
[click on the image above for the full excerpt]
Companies analyzed in this report include: Adtran Inc. (Nasdaq: ADTN); Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU); BTI Systems Inc.; Ciena Corp. (NYSE: CIEN); Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO); Coriant GmbH; Cyan Inc.; ECI Telecom Ltd.; Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC); Fujitsu Ltd. (TYO: 6702); Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd.; Tejas Networks Ltd.; and Transmode AB (Nasdaq: TRMO).
Total pages: 28
SEPTEMBER 2014
Windstream's REIT Gambit: A Heavy Reading Reality Check
This report analyzes Windstream's decision to spin off its legacy network assets into a REIT, focusing on the factors that influenced the decision and their applicability to other operators. It also analyzes the financial and ownership positions of other operators to determine if they may benefit from imitating this strategy.
READ SUMMARY
Including table of contents, executive summary, and financial metrics
AUGUST 2014
40/100G Ethernet Service Update: Slow but Steady Progress
This report reviews how carriers are addressing ultra-high-bandwidth (UHB) Ethernet services. It explores issues affecting 100GE and 40GE service adoption, and the relationship between the two bandwidth levels. Finally, the report includes status reports on how various carriers are deploying and selling services and forecasts the U.S. UHB services market.
READ SUMMARY
Including table of contents, executive summary, and financial metrics
JUNE 2014
WebRTC: Get Ready for the Next Telecom Revolution
This report views the developing WebRTC environment, focusing on the nascent standard's likely impact on telecom network operators. It overviews the types of applications that may develop using WebRTC technology, and also identifies and analyzes the primary threats and opportunities that WebRTC poses to telecom carriers. It also profiles 11 leading suppliers in the market.
READ SUMMARY
Including table of contents, executive summary, and financial metrics
CONTRIBUTING ANALYST
Simon Sherrington
Simon is an independent consultant who contributes regularly to Heavy Reading Insider. He has 13 years of experience analyzing, reporting, and consulting on technology market trends.
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Simon Sherrington
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CONTRIBUTING ANALYST
Danny Dicks
Danny is an analyst and consultant with over 20 years' experience in technology markets who contributes regularly to Heavy Reading Insider.
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Danny Dicks
CONTACT AUTHOR
ANALYST
Tim Kridel
Tim writes for both Mobile Networks Insider and Cable Industry Insider. He has previously covered the wireless and cable industries for a number of research firms, including Heavy Reading.
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Tim Kridel
CONTACT AUTHOR
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