Regional fiber operator Intellifiber has opened its low latency route between the New York and Chicago metro areas. Readers of this site will have heard about it before, since Telecom Ramblings first mentioned it not long after New Years. Raw speed simply dominates the financial vertical right now when it comes to bandwidth, and the NY-Chicago route is very competitive. Therefore it is not a surprise that several financial institutions are already on board.
The new route is physically diverse from other low latency routes, giving it value both as a primary and backup link. The route largely follows a build by Dominion Telecom back in the bubble which until recently had almost been forgotten by much of the industry. It also offers bypasses around trouble spots like central Cleveland and Philadelphia. Just how fast is it? My sources still say the SLA checks in at right around 17ms, though I will update that if I get further info. That would just barely give them the title - at least until a faster route comes online.
Of course the fiber path isn't everything, an appreciable amount of latency comes from the gear that all those bits travel through. Powering Intellifiber's low latency offering is apparently Ciena. In a parallel announcement today, the equipment provider announced that its CN 4200 RS Platform has been deployed across Intellifiber's footprint. More specifically, they are leveraging the Ciena gear on its low latency path from New York City, through Philadelphia and Pittsburgh and on to Chicago. Right now the offering is for 1G, 2.5G and 10G connections, but 40G and 100G will no doubt be in the picture when circumstances warrant.
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