Verizon Communications announced Tuesday that it has selected Ciena and Cisco Systems to help the carrier build a next-gen 100G metro network in the U.S. and keep pace with anticipated data demand.
The selection was expected, and “Verizon could spend $200 million or more per year split among the suppliers once the initiative is in full operation,” Raymond James analyst Simon Leopold surmised in a research note issued Wednesday.
Verizon didn’t break down the share, but Cisco is believed to have “secured the lead vendor position,” according to a report from Infonetics Research principal analyst, carrier transport networking, Andrew Schmitt that was issued on March 18. Schmitt, who expects that this business will be worth about $250 million per year, wrote that Ciena is positioned to take that lead slot should Cisco stumble. Still, the deal is a “huge win” for Cisco and its new NCS4000, he added.
According to Verizon, the telco will test and deploy Ciena’s 6500 packet optical technology and the Cisco Network Convergence System on portions of its 100G metro network this year, with plans to turn up live traffic in 2016.
Verizon started to conduct field trials of 100G optical traffic on a live system in 2007. In 2011, it announced the deployment of 100G on a portion of its backbone network -- connecting Chicago and New York – using gear from Ciena.