Some applications require lots of bandwidth. Hunter Newby of IP Business had a Q&A with Michael Sevret Vice President of Sales at 4Connections. They discussed how for many high bandwidth applications like algorithmic trading, medical imaging and records archiving dark fiber may provide the best cost/performance. They explain that enterprises are becoming aware of how optical works and detail some of the benefits of managing a dark fiber network.
Wave Division Multiplexing has increased the number of paths within a strand of fiber 100+ fold, and newer equipment continues to increase the capacity. Wavelength costs come down as the number of paths increase making it a viable option for enterprises when compared to the costs of Metro/WAN Ethernet (VPLS) or MPLS.
So what is the magic formula to determine whether Dark Fiber, Metro/WAN Ethernet or MPLS is best? Since no one carrier has an end to end network either nationally or internationally it requires a bit of research. Shop for Ethernet and Fiber Locator are both companies that help you find lit buildings, and if not lit, how far fiber is from your prem. Here's the criteria they suggest you evaluate.
- Least amount of new construction required
- Shortest distance between locations
- Lowest cost providers
The bottom line is dark fiber isn't just for carrier backbones anymore. If you have the resources to manage the equipment, or a good VAR to support you, it's increasingly becoming a cost effective alternative to carrier supplied services for certain high bandwidth applications.
Need help with dark fiber? Vocio has a portfolio of 80+ carriers to help our clients get the best cost/performance. Feel free to give us a call.