By Gordon Spray

Over the past 20 years we have seen a continuous collapse of network electronics from specialized functionality and rigid configuration rules into scalable multi service access and transport platforms. The result include economic benefits like reduced acquisition costs and ongoing operating expenses.

But what about infrastructure? Too often it conforms to the old rules of fixed networks, services and little or no scalability. With the massive investment of fiber going in the ground it’s key to have connectivity for infrastructure that mirrors the scalable multi service attributes of the access and transport equipment platforms. It makes no sense to go backwards and have separate frames that are only capable of a one or two connectivity attributes.

Fiber connectivity should have a unified platform much the same as a common backplane. One that’s capable of being configured for any network connectivity (patch, patch/splice, etc.), network type (PON, WDM, etc.), any service (triple play, Ethernet, etc.) and in any combination. It should also be scalable to maximize the service provider’s investment. This has never been more important than in today’s world of stimulus projects that run the gamut from connecting community anchors like municipal and healthcare facilities to FTTH.