Level 3 Quintuples Ethernet Switches

March 16th, 2010 by · 2 Comments

Ethernet seems to be the twinkle in every carrier's eye at the moment.  Today Level 3 announced a significant expansion to its switched Ethernet footprint.  They will be increasing the number of switches in their network by 400%, i.e. where there used to be one there will soon be 5.  The increased Ethernet footprint will eliminate the need for backhaul of switched metro Ethernet applications and set the stage for other higher level services down the line.  Feature enhancements are also apparently in store.

Now one must note that one doesn't quintuple an asset very often unless it is to replace existing equipment or there weren't all that many in the first place.  It's probably a bit of each here.  Ethernet services are increasingly replacing older technologies, which is leading to network redesigns that push such gear closer and closer to the edge.  But one can also say that after its provisioning troubles a few years ago and last year's capex cutbacks, Level 3 has for some time probably not been deploying as many Ethernet switches as their network architects would have otherwise.  

It is nice therefore to see the floodgates open, as it implies both that spending is returning to normal and the company sees demand picking up.

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Categories: Ethernet · Internet Backbones

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2 Comments So Far


  • Justin says:

    Level 3 to Deliver U.S. Network Services for PT. Telkom Indonesia International
    AAG Cable Landing Station Connectivity Bridges Two Continents
    BROOMFIELD, Colo., Mar 18, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) — Level 3 Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ: LVLT) today announced that the company will deliver high-speed network services for PT. Telkom Indonesia International (TII), a wholly owned subsidiary of PT. Telkom Indonesia. Under the terms of the agreement, TII will use Level 3’s landing station connectivity at the Asia America Gateway (AAG) submarine cable system. Level 3’s services provide a diverse and scalable extension of TII’s network to data and Internet traffic in the United States.
    “Telkom Indonesia International relies on Level 3 as a key component of our global network infrastructure,” said Mulia P. Tambunan, CEO of Telkom Indonesia International. “AAG is our first direct cable to the U.S. and connecting to Level 3 high-speed IP services will provide us better network service quality and connectivity to meet the growing communications needs of Indonesian consumers and businesses.”
    Under the terms of the agreement, Level 3 will provide TII with U.S. wavelength and high-speed IP services. TII will use Level 3 wavelength transport services to backhaul data and Internet traffic between the AAG cable landing station and the Level 3 gateway in Los Angeles.
    From the Level 3 gateway, Level 3 high-speed IP transit services will provide nationwide connectivity for TII. The combination of Level 3 wavelength and high-speed IP services with direct connectivity to AAG offers Telkom Group more efficient and cost-effective delivery of global communications for more than 100 million end-user customers.
    “Telkom Indonesia as a group is committed to delivering world-class services to their end-user customers,” said Andrew Crouch, president of Wholesale Markets for Level 3. “As increased broadband and wireless penetration continues to drive demand for U.S. network services, Level 3 is well positioned to meet that demand for international carriers.”
    Level 3 offers a broad suite of network services to carry network traffic delivered to the United States via terrestrial border crossings or subsea cable landing stations. Level 3 interconnects with more than 40 subsea cables in North America and Europe and offers one of the world’s largest IP transit networks to meet the growing demands for global communications.

  • FAC says:

    Each additional Ethernet switch (18-wheeler), which I presume possesses Layer 3 forwarding, may merely be a replacement for a half-dozen distributed edge and intermediate level routers (bicycles and SUVs, resepectively). More information is require to divine what they’re actually doing. If (3) is simply ‘flattening’ its network onto a collapsed backbone topology, then the increase in the number of Ethernet switches doesn’t, in and of itself, mean anything except a more efficiently run network. Several years ago Edu-Research nets (SURFnet6 out of NL comes to mind) were already replacing the kludgeware of hierarchically-configured routed networks with photonic domains and Ethernets. When all was said and done, some great router deals became available on eBay.

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