US telecoms giant AT&T plans to launch trials of 400 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) data speeds for businesses starting in early 2017. The telco intends to be the first in the industry to demonstrate a 400GbE service across its production network. The trial will unfold in three phases, as follows: phase one will use optical gear from Coriant to carry a true 400GbE service across a long-distance span of AT&T global backbone from New York to Washington; phase two will trial 400GbE on a single 400G wavelength across AT&T’s OpenROADM metro network, using optical gear from Ciena; and phase three will test the first instance of a 400GbE open router platform.
Rick Hubbard, senior vice president of AT&T Network Product Management, commented: ‘Although there have been efforts focused on 400 Gigabit Ethernet viability and industry standards over the past couple of years, we are excited to be the first to implement a pilot. 400GbE has the potential to transform how our largest retail and wholesale customers manage their networks today.’