360networks introduces Layer 2 Ethernet service

360networks is stepping out of its Layer 1 networking roots with the debut of its new Layer 2 Ethernet (L2E) service for its wholesale carrier customers.

Designed to provide Layer 2 connectivity between major carrier hotels, data centers, Internet Exchanges, and Ethernet Exchanges, the new service is fully mesh-protected to provide ubiquitous connectivity across 360networks' entire 18,000-route mile footprint. Because it's a port-based service, carrier customers pay a monthly recurring charge per port and can connect multiple locations in a point-to-point or point-to-multipoint configuration. 

Unlike traditional private line services, Rick Coma, 360networks' senior vice president, said that "L2E eliminates the complexity of building and managing a private network by providing a fully managed diverse protected transport solution." 

Levaraging its previously announced deployment of Alcatel-Lucent's Converged Backbone Transformation (CBT), the L2E service drive is part of a wider company initiative to cap and grow legacy services.

Capable of supporting 100 Gbps when ready, the Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU) gear (including the 1830 Photonic Service Switch and the 7750 Service Router) will support Layer 2 Ethernet over a DWDM optical network to provide low latency and limit congestion to its array of wholesale customers (wireless operators, traditional wireline operators and CDNs).

"What we're doing with Alcatel-Lucent is adding Layer 2 services to our platform, which we haven't had in the past," he said in an interview with FierceTelecom. "From a transport perspective, we've always been limited mostly to Layer 1 transport wavelength SONET-based services."

Coma added that 360networks' drive to L2E will also create new cost and service delivery efficiencies both for itself and its customers.

With this new platform, a customer could, for example, plug into a 1 Gbps port or a 10 Gbps port and scale up to the full capacity over time versus taking down an OC-12 and upgrade to an OC-48 and plug into a different interface within their network.

"By adding the Alcatel-Lucent platform into our network, it adds a lot of efficiencies to the way we provide services to our customers," he said. "When we provision services to our customers, we don't have to hand over the full circuit to them. It's going to be packet-based Ethernet connection so we can efficiently move that traffic around out network, which means cost savings to us that we will pass onto our customers."  

For more:
- see the release

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