Qwest positions its national network for fastest-available Ethernet technology

Date: Tue, 09/22/2009 - 17:46

Network upgrades to enhance customer experience with 100 Gbps speeds
Qwest positions its national network for fastest-available Ethernet technology Edward Mueller, Qwest CEO

Qwest Communications is enhancing its nationwide network with breakthrough technology that will position Qwest to deliver speeds of up to 100 Gigabits per second (Gbps) to its customer edge sites. This build-out has begun on Qwest’s network and is planned through 2010.
Qwest’s evolving backbone capabilities will deliver 100 Gbps across its national network directly to customers in markets where the company offers its Ethernet-based iQ Networking and QWave data networking services. Qwest’s upgraded backbone will transport and switch data faster and more cost-effectively, thus ensuring Qwest customers have the ability to scale bandwidth more conveniently and with greater ease.
Pieter Poll, chief technology officer, Qwest, said: “This industry-leading upgrade, with the help of our partner Alcatel-Lucent, allows Qwest to meet the very real challenges of responding to data consumption trends. Qwest is satisfying customers’ appetites for increasingly sophisticated applications while honoring the need to be more resource-efficient.” 
For Basil Alwan, head of Carrier Portfolio Strategy, Alcatel-Lucent, “As a tier one national carrier, Qwest is engineering today’s network for tomorrow’s growth in mind with all of the capabilities needed to handle broadband-intensive services like the next suite of unified communications, video, multimedia and virtualized applications. Through our advanced IP and optical technology, Alcatel-Lucent is helping Qwest create a nationwide backbone critical for its strategic IP transformation.” 
Michael Howard, principal analyst, carrier and data center networks, Infonetics Research, said: "Internet traffic keeps growing, however service providers need to make money. For this, they not only need higher speeds and capacities, they need service flexibility at the same time. We’re encouraged to see Qwest integrate Alcatel-Lucent’s 100 Gigabit Ethernet with services enablement for the edge and the metro, which also serves as high-speed transport in the core. The fact that these products use the Alcatel-Lucent FP2 silicon helps reduce risk as service providers move to 100 Gigabit interfaces within their networks.”
Qwest is making the investment through a deepened relationship with Alcatel-Lucent. The new architecture Qwest is deploying is designed to reduce latency and add capacity to the core network to accommodate growth from video and other bandwidth-intensive applications.
Qwest will deploy, among other technologies, Alcatel-Lucent’s recently announced 100 Gbps Ethernet service routing capability. Installation includes supporting routers and switches out to the edge of the network, as well as Alcatel-Lucent’s optical, ultra long-haul platform that will transport the 100 Gbps services. Terms of the agreement are not being disclosed.
At 100 Gbps, the enhancements potentially will allow network traffic to go from point-to-point with the following capabilities:  

• 138 4.7 Gigabyte DVDs in 60 seconds    
• A 2-hour HD movie or presentation in less than 9 seconds
• A fully loaded 500 Gigabyte hard drive in 46 seconds
• 90 digital mammograms per second
• Qwest’s objective with this network upgrade is to deliver more powerful capabilities to its customer base, including global enterprises and governments.
• Additionally, this upgrade directly addresses and alleviates pressure on the network backbone. Internet traffic is doubling approximately every 19 months. And each year, individual Internet users consume approximately 43 percent more bandwidth than the previous year.
• As a result of the evolution, the network needs fewer regeneration sites and relies on advances in silicon power handling. Qwest expects the improvements to produce gains in power efficiency on a per-Gigabit basis, helping create a greener Internet. 
• Speed and capacity improvements will encourage the use of emerging broadband-intensive services; allow for more diverse bandwidth options; support enhanced network protection capabilities; and reduce overall latency.
• Qwest’s national network delivers services to more than 145 markets across the contiguous United States. As service becomes available, Qwest will make additional announcements.

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