Yesterday, Verizon (NYSE:VZ, news, filings) announced further developments in its Verizon Business division's international expansion. Their Pacific mesh network, begun in 2007, has been completed after the final extension to Singapore. The seven way mesh across the Pacific, which uses capacity on the new Trans Pacific Express cable as well as many others, is designed to seamlessly reroute traffic on cable cuts with greater reliability than before. In parallel, a dozen new Private IP nodes were opened and ethernet access was extended to another dozen nodes.
There was a time when the MCI/Worldcom international backbone was the pride of telecom. Their fiber stretched everywhere, they were part of dozens of cable consortiums, and their bandwidth commanded a premium. That all came crashing down with the rest of the company around Bernie Ebber's ears, and the international component shared plenty of blame in the financial shenanigans. Its reputation tarnished, its profile lowered, and its capital investment slashed, it then became part of Verizon, a company that until then had never much cared what happened outside of its home RBOC turf.
I wondered at the time if Verizon would ever really take up the mantle. Deep down in its RBOC soul did it really care about an international network? Or would they run it because they have it, but as an afterthought? Well, it hasn't been the fastest recovery in history, and I suppose that the depths of the crash made that necessary. However, the Verizon Business network does seem to be aiming to reclaim its former glory, at least they are certainly putting substantial cash behind the rebuilding of it. And they are doing it at a time when everyone else is hiding money under mattresses, so they are perhaps catching up.
Will they make it? Are they already there?
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