Two global networking vendors announced an alliance today that could shake up the status quo. Ciena and Ericsson have signed a strategic global agreement to push forward on multiple, high profile fronts. Just in time for Valentine's Day too.
The two plan to develop joint transport solutions for both IP-optical convergence and service-provider SDN. On a practical level, Ericsson will be integrating Ciena's packet-optical portfolio into its own offerings.
Ciena's expertise is focused around the optical layer with a big chunk of the 100G transition. Ericsson's inclinations are more in the neighborhood of IP and mobile network infrastructure and operation these days. Success with packet-optical and SDN really require both, hence the pairing up.
The two companies clearly hope their alliance will enable them to better to take on the likes of Cisco, Alcatel-Lucent, and of course Huawei which start out with both halves of the orange. And they hope to do it without having to build what they don't have from scratch or buy and integrate something over the next few years.
Of course, Ericsson also sells transport gear which competes with that of Ciena, which begs the question of whether another shoe may be about to drop.
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