AT&T Announces OPT-E-WAN a Virtual Private LAN Service with National and Global Reach
Company Also Expands Midband Ethernet Capability by Introducing Three New Connection Speeds Below 10 Mbps
San Antonio, Texas, March 11, 2008
AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) today announced the introduction of expanded capabilities of AT&T's Ethernet portfolio with the rollout of a global virtual private local area network service (VPLS) and expanded midband Ethernet connection speeds — including speeds below 10 Mbps — that enable businesses to use Ethernet services over copper wires.
AT&T's VPLS service called OPT-E-WANSM, will enable businesses to link multiple locations — whether across town or around the world — with all the ease and efficiency of a point-to-point Ethernet connection. The service is expected to be available beginning this summer. Throughout 2008, AT&T plans to make these services available in the U.S. and in 14 overseas locations — Frankfurt, London, Brussels, Paris, Amsterdam, Stockholm, Dublin/Cork, Milan, Madrid and Zurich in Europe; and Hong Kong, Sydney, Singapore, Tokyo in the Asia/Pacific region.
Because OPT-E-WAN uses the same simple and highly scalable Ethernet interfaces, businesses will have a great deal of flexibility to mix and match bandwidth and security among locations. This will allow network managers to assign network resources across the virtual LANs with a level of sophistication not possible before.
Demand for Ethernet services worldwide continues to expand, reaching a global market size of nearly $12 billion in 2007, according to the research firm, Ovum1. That growth is being driven by the need that businesses of all sizes have for affordable and easy-to-manage bandwidth to support next-generation enterprise applications including disaster recovery, storage and converged voice and video. Ovum also notes that Ethernet service over copper wires is the fastest-growing segment of the Ethernet market, with growth expected to continue.
"OPT-E-WAN will provide users with a new level of choices for establishing virtual LAN or WAN connections, unlike other services — such as traditional Frame Relay — that typically limit users to point-to-point connections," said Sanford Brown, vice president, AT&T Connectivity and Metro Network Services. "Because it uses Ethernet interfaces, OPT-E-WAN can be configured easily in a variety of ways to meet customer needs whether they require point-to-point, multipoint or multipoint-to-multipoint connections.
"And when combined with the power and global reach of AT&T's Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) core, customers will get the look and feel of a metro Ethernet network that can handle converged voice, data and video applications globally, along with the ability to scale it seamlessly," Brown said.
New OPT-E-MAN Connection Speeds
At the same time, AT&T is adding new connection speeds of 2 Mbps, 4 Mbps, and 8 Mbps to its OPT-E-MAN® switched metro Ethernet service that uses AT&T's MPLS network backbone to transport voice, data and video applications to multiple locations. The new speeds will be available in AT&T's 13-state legacy footprint, and will be supported by AT&T's industry-leading service level agreements offered with OPT-E-MAN service. AT&T already offers 2 Mbps, 4 Mbps, and 8 Mbps Metro Ethernet® speeds in the nine-state Southeast footprint.
The lower speeds will help businesses connect to Ethernet services over fiber facilities or over copper facilities, eliminating the need for businesses to invest in expensive fiber build outs when copper facilities are readily available. For example, businesses with large data centers located in a metro area may need to connect multiple smaller offices, or branch offices, to their centrally located centers. These smaller locations may require less bandwidth and may reside in suburban or rural areas where copper facilities are more accessible.
Pricing for the new connection speeds is based on a combination of the rate, level of support and grade of service, and contract terms range from one to five years.
For more information on AT&T's portfolio of Ethernet services, go to http://www.business.att.com/access_and_local.
1 Ovum RHK, "Forecast: Enterprise Ethernet Services, Global," Oct. 15, 2007
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