Last week, a lesser known network operator made a further move on the low latency, high speed trading marketplace, and unlike most is including actual numbers in its PR. First Communications announced that it has cut 1.4ms off its route between the New York and Chicago metro areas. More specifically, they can now offer just under 17.2ms latency connectivity between the major facilities at 350 E Cermak in Chicago and 165 Halsey in Newark. The reduced latency number is attributed to the implementation of recent technology that reduces delay caused by dispersion compensation.
First Communications rolled out its longhaul networking offers last fall, with an eye specifically on the financial vertical with low latency on this route. However, they are planning to expand wavelength services to other markets in the region including Upstate NY, the I-95 corridor, and the southern NJ cable landing stations - all places their dark fiber currently extends.
I'm still looking for details on the origins of the fiber involved here. Most of it appears to have come from the acquisition of First Telecom Services, which used to be a division of First Energy in Akron and leveraged utility rights of way. Whether the Chicago/NY route itself comes from a direct build by the energy utility or via IRUs purchased or traded for on some other build I do not know. Anybody? Regardless, the company has some interesting metro networks that I didn't know about and which I am adding to my metro fiber map links collection in Pennsylvania and Ohio.
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