Tata Communications Exploring Possibility Of Ethernet Metro Network

The company aims to provide a network that is comparable to Ethernet networks found in major cities around the world.

hidden December 03, 2008 14:12:46 IST
Tata Communications Exploring Possibility Of Ethernet Metro Network

According to an Ovum report, the global market potential for Ethernet will cross $13 billion by the end of 2008. Companies wanting to expand their footprint into other countries with seamless connectivity are increasingly choosing Ethernet as a cost effective option to achieve this. Tata Communications claims to offer flexible bandwidth capabilities coupled with cost effectiveness. Biztech2.0 spoke to John Hoffman, head of Ethernet Product Management, Tata Communications, to gain insights into this emerging technology trend.

What are some of the challenges CIOs are facing with regard to Ethernet services in India?

The biggest challenge is the quality of the circuit. The lack of fibre to many locations and the expanse of India make it challenging to deliver services in some areas. Tata Communications is working hard to improve quality and to offer a deeper Ethernet services line within India.

Tata Communications customises Ethernet solutions to meet user requirements. Are there any trends that have been identified in the requirements put forth by customers?

The number one issue for customers is cost and Ethernet allows them to achieve their cost reduction objective through its flexibility. Customers have expressed interest in a fully managed service where one provider monitors the circuit from customer premise to customer premise. Tata Communications SLA option satisfies this requirement.

What are the upcoming Ethernet service offerings from the company for Indian enterprises?

Tata Communications already offers a wide variety of services within India. The company offers point to point, point to multipoint and multipoint Ethernet services already. These services have a variety of options such as classes of service, frames forwarded using VLAN or MAC addressing, jumbo frames, private or shared networks and monitoring of customer premises.

We are working to improve our service offering in India to include a low priced best effort service, more classes of service, metro services and 10 GB Ethernet.

Can you give us a gist of the type of Ethernet services the R&D team is working on at Tata Communications?

We are exploring the possibility of an Ethernet metro network spread across several major cities. Our goal is to provide a network that is comparable to Ethernet networks found in major cities around the world. We are also looking at ways to improve our national service. We would like to improve the SLAs that we offer on our Ethernet services and enhance the variety of services too.

Can you shed light on Ethernet service adoption by SMBs?

We have seen moderate uptake of Ethernet by the SMB segment. Most firms migrate to Ethernet when they realise that the Ethernet offers features and flexibility that cannot be found elsewhere. An SMB with a requirement for high bandwidth or an advanced topology will find Ethernet very beneficial. If an SMB has low bandwidth requirements and simple, point to point circuits, then it may opt for other solutions.

In the wake of the credit crunch, have planned any low cost packages for customers?

We have not planned any changes in the current pricing of our products as Ethernet’s flexibility naturally makes it a low cost alternative to Layer 1 connectivity.

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