A few weeks ago, I wrote a post here inviting you all to attend Light Reading India’s Next-Generation Packet Transport Networks conference. That event is now behind us, and I’d like to share some impressions with you. Before I begin, I must tell you that I’m not terribly fond of telecoms industry events. More often than not, vendors use these events as a platform for hawking their products, and this just doesn’t sit right with me. But that said, I have to admit I was pleasantly surprised by the Next-Gen Packet Transport conference – and my experiences there are helping me to view these types of events in a much more positive light.
What impressed me most about the conference was the wide range of issues discussed and how these lie at the very heart of what operators are facing today and what we vendors are trying to address. In India, as in many markets around the word, the explosion of mobile broadband traffic and the demand for multimedia applications have resulted in a data ‘tsunami’ that operators are left to cope with. But what’s unique to India is the sheer scale of activity – it’s of a magnitude that you don’t see anywhere else in the world.
One of the most hotly debated topics at the conference was packet transport and its readiness to carry TDM services. Many incumbent operators tend to favor an All-Native approach or a hybrid approach in which both TDM and Ethernet are carried natively without the use encapsulation schemes like Ethernet over SDH or TDM over Packet (CES). The reason for this is simplicity and the avoidance of unnecessary complexity. On the other hand, emerging operators without huge installed bases tend to favor an All Packet approach that enables them to leapfrog to a unified All-Packet transport network. As we have promoted for a long time, the reality is that there is really no right or wrong approach. The technology options are very much dependent on the volume of data versus TDM and the installed base. In the end, it comes down to this: whatever the approach, it should be TCO driven and not technology driven.
For me personally, this event provided great perspective on the challenges that operators today are going through and the types of solutions they are searching for. I was struck by the reality that we’re entering another cycle of growth and evolution, and I’m excited about witnessing it firsthand.
I’ll definitely be back again – for the event itself, and also the great food! If you attended the conference too, I invite you to weigh in below.
Head of Marketing, Asia Pacific