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Multi-vendor MPLS-TP Interoperability Demonstrated for Packet Transport Networks

Widely deployed from the core to the edge, IP/MPLS has achieved huge success as a mature, standards-based technology now deployed by virtually every service provider worldwide.  As a result, the industry has chosen to extend IP/MPLS and develop a transport profile called MPLS-TP (MPLS Transport Profile). MPLS-TP is the packet transport technology of choice being developed by the IETF to allow service providers to cost effectively migrate existing transport networks to packet based solutions.

Recently EANTC conducted an MPLS-TP Interoperability Event which focused on testing and demonstrating interoperability of key IP/MPLS and Carrier Ethernet features between multiple vendor platforms. This represented a critical technology demonstration for service providers as they begin their migration to packet transport networks.

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When that Video Absolutely, Positively Has to Get Through

Let’s face it - dancing cats are cute and apocalyptic visions of the future without IPv6 can be entertaining, but a glitch or two…or a “video not available” won’t violate any service level agreements. But what happens if the FIFA World Cup broadcast goes down? Or the “Auburn-Alabama” football game? Or the amazing live video feed of those copper miners in Chile being rescued? Millions will know immediately, and if it’s a paid event - millions of dollars of advertising or pay-per- revenue could be lost.

As it happened previously with voice, video transport is now moving from TDM to IP and this brings many benefits in terms of flexibility, the potential for application integration, and the opportunity to reach new customers watching on mobile and computing devices. However, this creates a new set of challenges for today’s operators - to not just carry a diverse set of video formats, but also to more endpoints while still ensuring a uniform high quality of experience.

Meeting these challenges will allow service providers and broadcasters to provide premium video experiences to customers.  Cisco is pleased to announce its latest innovations for the video broadcast and distribution market -- the Cisco IP NGN Video Optimized Transport solution, the foundation for the next-generation of lossless video delivery. It includes:

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Surging Demand for Rich-Media Services? No Problem

Growth in enterprise and consumer services, including cloud computing, video and collaboration services, are some of the key customer trends that underpin many service providers’ decision to further invest in Carrier Ethernet technology. And Tata Communications is no exception.

On Tuesday, Tata Communications, a global service provider and a leader in the Ethernet market, announced that it has selected the Cisco® ASR 9000 Series Aggregation Services Routers to support its new global Next Generation Ethernet Network; and is using the Cisco ASR 9000 to deploy the first global 802.1ah Provider Backbone Bridging (PBB) network.

In plain English, this means that Tata Communications’ customers will benefit by having a larger variety of services delivered with greater scalability, reliability, efficiency.

All existing and new services will be delivered with geographic specificity to minimize latency over a highly efficient network. Migrating to 802.1ah PBB will give Tata Communications a network that can deliver multipoint services more efficiently, while at the same time being able to handle a higher volume of services.

This should be exciting news for Tata’s customers specifically as well as the industry in general. The Cisco Visual Networking Index (VNI) Forecast for 2009-2014, projects that global Internet traffic will increase more than fourfold to 767 exabytes, or more than three quarters of a Zettabyte, by 2014. This amount is 100 exabytes higher than the projected level in 2013, or in other words an increase equivalent to 10 times all the traffic that traversed Internet Protocol Next-Generation Network (IP NGN) in 2008.

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Tata, the Cisco ASR 9000, and the Global Ethernet Evolution

Even if you’re a recent member of the SP360 blog audience, you likely know that our flagship edge router -- the ASR 9000 -- is on my list of favorite things (it makes a great gift idea for the Holidays, btw…), and we’re pleased to report that it is on the lists of many of our largest service provider customers, too.  The ASR 9000 has no question made a strong degree traction in the market place in the 18 months since it became generally available and in fact is clearly hitting its stride with a 40% QoQ increase in its customer base last quarter.  This traction is not just because of its unmatched capacity in the edge, or its unique capabilities in supporting the services and applications of the Next Generation of the Internet, but also because of its high degree of resiliency and quality - prompting many customers I speak to, to continue to rave about it.

In addition to all this traction, contributing to some nice market share gains for Cisco - an increase in 2.7% in edge share in CYQ3 alone per ACG Research - we’re just as pleased with what the ASR9000 can do to support our service provider customers.  To that end, we’re honored to announce the addition of Tata Communications to the list of prominent, reference customers.

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