Columbian Broadband Provider Brings 100G Rollout in Time for World Cup Action

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Columbian Broadband Provider Brings 100G Rollout in Time for World Cup Action

By Mae Kowalke, TMCnet Contributor

Anyone who knows “futbol” (aka “soccer” in the U.S. and “football” elsewhere) knows how enormously popular it is in Latin America.  Hence, being able to provide as many fans as possible great inside and particularly remote from stadium user experiences has become something of an obsession.  Illustrative of this is that thanks to its newly installed 100G ultra-broadband network, Colombia’s mobile provider, UNE, was able to debut widespread streaming video services in time for the recent 2014 FIFA World Cup. This meant its subscribers could have quality viewing experiences over their   smart TVs, tablets and smartphones.

Columbia, like many countries, is in the midst of an explosion in interest in streaming video, and meeting this demand meant need, of course, requires better infrastructure. In fact, Columbia has been working hard to build its high-speed infrastructure, and it has grown its Internet connectivity by roughly 300 percent in the past 2.5 years, according to a recent Alcatel-Lucent case study, UNE Secures Colombia’s Ultra-broadband Future with 100Gbps Network.

Colombia’s growing its infrastructure highlights some of the problems that are common with connectivity in emerging economies—namely, dealing with the needs of large territories with widely dispersed urban centers and chronic constraints on NOC space and power consumption.

“Integrating the legacy infrastructure—in this case, the optics management system and unused fiber—with the ultra-broadband network, is also daunting on the professional services front,” noted Earl Kennedy Earl Kennedy, IP Transport Product Marketing, Alcatel-Lucent, in a recent TechZine article on the UNE network deployment.  “Indeed, the heart of UNE’s challenge is nation-building—extending UNE’s fiber-optic network to connect 1,053 municipalities, 50 percent of small- and medium-sized enterprises, and 50 percent of Colombian households by the end of this year.”

As a result, the top priority for UNE is to sustain momentum by growing capacity.

To meet this challenge, UNE looked to Alcatel-Lucent for its optical 100G infrastructure.

“We needed integration for the management system that we had been using for several years, and we were able to gain peace-of-mind knowing that the previous technology, which also had been deployed by Alcatel-Lucent, and had served us well, would be easier to integrate with the new network,” noted Alejandro Toro, network engineering and operations director for UNE.

He added: “Other considerations, such as the maturity of the platform, capacity, and power efficiency, posed even bigger challenges, and Alcatel-Lucent exceeded the qualifications of other providers for addressing those.”

The Alcatel-Lucent solution provided the relief that the capacity-strapped UNE needed, bridged incomplete fiber spans up to 180 kilometers long, and did it all with significantly less space and power use than the typical deployment requires.

And, Alcatel-Lucent did it in time for the FIFA World Cup, making Columbia’s sports fans very, very happy.


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