IDC Reports 2006 to be a Banner Year for Enterprise Deployment of Optical Networks

FRAMINGHAM, MA – NOVEMBER 20, 2006 – 2006 is becoming a banner year for enterprise deployment of optical networks. Driven by regulatory requirements regarding how to manage, store, and recover data, as well as by company mergers, the worldwide growth of the enterprise optical networking market will exceed 17% in 2006, a rate nearly twice as fast as the overall optical market growth – without SONET/SDH – a new IDC study reveals. Deployment of optical networks, once dominated by financial services, are now expanding to include major health institutions, state and local governments, and utilities, and have begun extending to small and medium sized businesses.

"While a number of these vertical industries offer tremendous opportunities, significant differences in the adoption of optical networking equipment exist across verticals in the U.S. and the rest of the world," said Daniel Corsetti, senior analyst for IDC's Hardware and Telecommunications Vertical Views programs. "From a regional perspective, the 'emerging countries' where no legacy infrastructures are in place, are the fastest growing sector for deploying optical networks."

"Although the enterprise is now a significant contributor to the overall growth of the optical networking market, the enterprise organization is very different from the typical telecommunication service provider," added Eve Griliches, program manager for Telecommunications Equipment at IDC. "To ensure success, vendors should consider deploying savvy sales people who understand the enterprise environment."

IDC's special study, Worldwide Optical Networking Equipment Forecast by Vertical Market, 2006-2010, provides insight into the expansion, deployment models, and drivers of enterprise optical networks market, in the U.S. and the rest of the world, and offers recommendations to vendors on how to enter and grow in this market. This study also addresses the following topics:

— The differences across verticals worldwide and spending trends in each optical segment.

— The dichotomy between service providers offering managed lambda services and companies venturing to build their own private optical networks.

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