TDM transport remains the backbone of service provider networks throughout the world, but technology has matured to the point that we’re finally able to see a path toward truly converged, packet optimized transport networks. This shift puts service providers on a plan to eventually retire their SONET/SDH infrastructure, saving significant space, power, and other operational costs. For end users, it promises bandwidth flexibility and an even easier ability to tap into cloud-based applications.

Of course, such a change won’t happen overnight but will take time to ensure existing customer services aren’t affected in terms of the performance, latency, and availability.

While there has been a lot of talk about the technologies to enable IP and optical convergence — such as timing-over-packet standards and cost-effective circuit emulation — that’s just part of the solution. Just as important are the operational aspects as we converge (or “packetize”) networks, but how are we going to manage them? That’s the reason behind Cisco’s new Evolved Programmable Network Manager software, or EPN Manager for short.

EPN Manager, along with Cisco WAN Automation Engine provides full-lifecycle service management and automation for both optical and IP networks. EPN Manager is a complete, multi-layer, multi-vendor next generation network management solution.

One of the companies making the transition to packet-optimized transport is Verizon.

“Verizon is moving to a next-generation 100G metro network in the U.S. that will deliver improved scalability, functionality and efficiency,” said Glenn Wellbrock, Director of Optical Transport Network Architecture, Verizon. “As part of its tests of the Cisco Network Convergence System, Verizon is evaluating the new EMS/NMS solution Cisco is bringing to market.  We expect multi-layer next-generation network management solutions, like the Cisco EPN Manager, will enable Verizon to increase business agility and operational efficiencies through automated device operations, fast provisioning and service assurance.”

There are a couple of upcoming opportunities for you to see EPN Manager in person. This week we’re at TM Forum in Nice, France. The following week (June 8-12) we’re at the Service Provider booth in San Diego, CA for Cisco Live US. Later in the month we’re back in Nice (June 22-25) at the Next Generational Optical Networking Conference. Of course if you miss us at any of these venues, contact your Cisco account team or authorized partner for your own demonstration.

Tweet us @CiscoSP360 if you have any questions or comments.


Greg Smith

Sr. Manager, Marketing

Cisco Solutions Marketing