Frontier’s network footprint has grown considerably, thanks to their Verizon rural network assets purchase. Ensuring both transport and access portions of that network meet bandwidth and services demand is no trivial task and Frontier recently outlined some of their strategy to do so.

For the transport portion of their network, Frontier is engaged in a migration to packet-optical transport technologies which includes Reconfigurable Optical Add-Drop Multiplexer (ROADM) systems. In basic terms ROADM allows a carrier to remotely switch traffic at the wavelength level on fiber routes. It’s a much more efficient way to allocate bandwidth and services on a network, giving carrier’s flexibility to better serve their customers and their own network demands.

For Frontier, they report ROADM benefits include:

  • The ability to turn up bandwidth for multiple services without the need for intensive long-term forecasts or pre-planning of service types;
  • More intelligence and automated signaling, plus faster circuit provisioning and activation time; and
  • Efficient use of personnel, since technicians are needed only at origin and destination points to install line cards – all other provisioning is automatic.

Frontier reports they’ve deployed approximately 345 ROADM systems across their network and will have them deployed across more than 6,500 route miles by midyear 2011. They’ve selected ROADM platforms from Tellabs. In West Virginia, where Frontier received heightened scrutiny since they basically bought the whole state from Verizon, they’ve deployed 108 ROADM platforms alone.

As a result, Frontier says they can now deliver more than 30 different types of residential or business services over their Packet-Optical Transport Network including: Ethernet (Fiber to the Office or Cell Site); Session Internet Protocol (SIP) trunking; Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS); and Dedicated Internet Access Services (DIA).

Frontier is rolling out this capability to support their rural and suburban markets in West Virginia, Oregon, Washington, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, and Illinois.


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