Ciena gets AT&T's optical dance card

Ciena's fight for Nortel's optical assets may end up providing a big win for the company as a report emerged that AT&T has chosen it to be one of its domain suppliers of optical networking equipment.

According to a research note written by Simon Leopold of Morgan Keegan & Company, Ciena stood out over Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia Siemens Networks. The report added that AT&T also named Fujitsu as the other optical domain vendor.

When AT&T announced its domain supplier concept last September, it revealed that it would choose two vendors for its major network segments. Last week, AT&T named Alcatel-Lucent and Ericsson as its LTE vendors.

Of course, there are pros and cons to becoming a domain supplier. The pros are that Ciena, which already has sold equipment to AT&T, would be able to more effectively bid for other opportunities at Ma Bell, including 100 Gbps networking. However, the con with becoming a domain supplier is that Ciena will have to support Nortel's earlier generation gear.

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