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Giving businesses the freedom they've sought

Fri, 11/30/2001 - 7:00pm
Roger Brown

Google factor: 1,370

Wouldn't it be great if you could provide commercial customers with the exact amount of bandwidth they need, when they need it? And wouldn't it be cool if the network was entirely IP-based?

That concept is no pie-in-the-sky vision–it's here today. Yipes (as in, "Yipes, that's fast!") Communications has taken the business world by storm by offering IP over Ethernet over a DWDM network in major cities around the country.

It's different from traditional telecom service providers because, by eschewing Sonet and ATM-based technology, it's able to provide bandwidth in 1 Mbps increments up to 1 Gbps, which avoids the "lumpy" increments that are built into T-1 (1.55 Mbps), DS-3 (45 Mbps), OC-3 (155 Mbps) and OC-12 (622 Mbps) services. So, instead of being stuck with too little bandwidth or having to pay extra for too much bandwidth, Yipes' bandwidth is just right.

An added bonus is Yipes' nearly-instant provisioning. Instead of putting in a request for additional bandwidth and then waiting weeks to get it provisioned by an incumbent LEC, Yipes gives that control to the customer, who can dial in as much bandwidth it needs via a Web interface. In some cases, the bandwidth is made available in just a few minutes.

To do this, Yipes runs fiber directly into a building and connects it to a router. That allows Yipes to offer customers a low-cost Ethernet-to-Ethernet or Ethernet-to-IP services.

Making broadband a true industry of its own will probably require businesses to buy in first. These guys are making that buy-in easy.

Others to watch:

XO Communications has an Internet backbone in the United States as well as in Europe and has over 200 public and private peering arrangements with other large Internet backbones.

The XO Metro Area Networks (MANs) span 430,000 fiber miles throughout 40 major US cities, including the top 30. These MANs offer products like Ethernet services and Dense Wave Division Multiplexing (DWDM) to carry data faster and efficiently. The company also owns the largest footprint of fixed wireless spectrum in the 28 GHz LMDS spectrum which covers 95 percent of the population in the top 30 U.S. cities.

Cogent Communications, a privately held high-speed Internet service provider, provides optical Ethernet connectivity for businesses. It intends to own a 12,400-mile, fiber-optic network consisting of a national, non-blocking OC-192 backbone and multi OC-48 metropolitan area networks located in all major U.S. cities. The company's service can be summed up in a single sentence: it offers 100 Mbps of non-oversubscribed, unlimited Internet access for a flat $1,000 per month.

The company announced late this year that it would merge with Allied Riser to add in-building networks to it product portfolio; and then purchased the assets of NetRail, which went bankrupt earlier in the year.

Cogent has launched service in Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Santa Clara and Washington, D.C.

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