INFN catalyst: the demand for IX

Folks, this is a cross post from the INFN boards, brought here for those who follow INFN.

Last quarter before earnings I wrote up a post about how the ICPs (not the telecos) were going to drive demand for CX, and how those customers will be spending at a faster clip in a fairly short order. I mentioned we should also expect contribution from them and to be talked about the conference call. I based my hunch on a case study write up tucked away on the Infinera website I found right before earnings.

The case study’s customer:

A growing number of Infinera’s customers are leading ICPs responsible for
search, storage, email, social media, communications,
network applications and a number of other Cloudbased services. Common
attributes of this customer base include:
• Strong and sustained growth in bandwidth demand
• Predominantly greenfield network deployment
• High concern for user experience, driving even greater bandwidth

And the solution:

• Infinera Cloud Xpress, specifically designed to serve this market
• High density, low-power and Cloud-optimized datacenter connectivity
• Optimum scalability with minimum complexity

For reference, that same case study is located here:…

Freshly published on the Infinera website, just 5 hours ago as I write this, Infinera is signaling expectations on a new profile of customer. And as last time, I believe we should look for their contribution in the coming earnings call.…

The customer:

Internet Exchanges (IXs) provide colocation space, power and interconnection services linking Cloud providers, partners and customers

The solution:

• Infinera Cloud Xpress, designed for metro Cloud datacenter interconnection
• High density: 500 Gb/s in 2 rack units
• Low-power: less than 1 Watt per Gb/s
• Easy 1-2-3 provisioning, rack-and-stack capacity scaling
• “Pay as you grow” point-and-click 100G bandwidth increment

Some quotes from customers in the Case Study:

“Distributed Internet exchange infrastructure is a key strategy to serve growing demand. DE-CIX in Frankfurt, LINX in London, and Equinix in major locations around the world all use dedicated network capacity interconnecting numerous sites throughout a given metro area to create virtual networking environments that nearly simulate colocation in a single building over a wider area.”
—Jonathan Hjembo, Senior Analyst at TeleGeographyTelegeography

“As Japan’s fastest growing commercial IX service, we continue to enhance our network to ensure the efficient flow of data in the metro Cloud for Internet users in Japan and globally. The Infinera Cloud Xpress allows us to interconnect all of our sites while only requiring a small amount of space and power. And the platform provides us operational benefits that massively simplify what it takes to deploy the network.
—Yoshiki Ishida, JPIX CEO

“Equinix is rapidly expanding across the globe. Cloud Xpress is an ideal solution for us to scale bandwidth in our Hong Kong and Tokyo networks and enhance our ability to connect our customers. Cloud Xpress is extremely simple to deploy and manage and fits our high-density, low power requirements. We are now looking forward to deploying the Cloud Xpress family in other markets globally to take advantage of these same scaling benefits.
—Teri Francis, vice president

A case study is published when there are actual cases to study, meaning there are customers actively using the technology, benefitting from it, and thinking about buying more. Case studies are used during sales initiatives to show prospective customers how a technology is proving its value to other customers in their space. While not every customer will officially go on record in these case studies, you can usually infer who they are.

There is another coincidence with respect to the timeliness of this case study’s publication. Earlier today I found an article about DE-CIX on Lightwave:…

Internet exchange services provider DE-CIX reports that its flagship Frankfurt Internet exchange hit an active traffic peak of 5 Tbps on December 8, 2015. The traffic flow was a new record for the exchange, which topped 4 Tbps the previous April (see “DE-CIX touts 4-Tbps traffic peak at Frankfurt Internet exchange”).

Besides having the requisite number of customers, DE-CIX attributes the 5-Tbps benchmark to the rapid worldwide growth in data demand, driven predominantly by video and Internet-enabled mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.

“We are surprised ourselves how strongly our customer capacities have ramped up this year and how much the data traffic on our Internet exchange in Frankfurt has grown,” stated Harald A. Summa, DE-CIX CEO, via a press release issued shortly after the highpoint was reached. "In total, the capacity booked by our customers at DE-CIX Frankfurt has increased by 40.3%, from 12.9 terabit at the beginning of the year to 18.1 terabit today. So far [in 2015], we’ve also booked more than fifty 100GbE connections – that is double the number we’d expected for the entire year. Additionally, through the end of the year, we will have connected more than approximately 100 new networks."

Whew. 100 more new networks to add by the end of this year. If DE-CIX is not currently a CX customer, they may very well be the reason this case study was written - to target them for a sale. And DE-CIX likely knows very well about Infinera. In fact, DE-CIX has a few case studies to boast of their own. One of their customers is RETN, and here’s what DE-CIX had to say about them. Note, this case study is located within the DE-CIX website, NOT RETN’s.…

RETN is an international network service provider. RETN develops and operates its own fiber optic backbone network that ensures data and IP traffic transmission between the largest telecommunications nodes in the world. RETN serves different kinds of customers demanding reliable connectivity: large enterprises, carriers, ISPs, CDNs, financial and governmental organizations, and hosting and Cloud providers.

Founded in 2002, RETN provides international IP transit, Ethernet VPN services, capacity, remote peering, colocation and other infrastructure services. Its network exceeds 30,000 km of lit fiber routes and connects 26 countries throughout Europe, Asia and North America. The wide range of services is offered at more than 150 RETN PoPs over the RETN network. RETN delivers bandwidth speeds of up to 100 Gigabit Ethernet (GE) across its cross-border DWDM network infrastructure based on Infinera 500 Gigabit/s Super-Channels. The total network capacity on its four main routes between Europe and Asia reaches 5 Terabit/s.

DE-CIX Internet exchange platforms in Frankfurt and New York allow RETN to interconnect with hundreds of global networks. As a member of the DE-CIX Partner Program, RETN can also offer remote peering services to this Internet exchange for all its international clients.

Now we have another data point to add to our expectations on contributions from a new growing customer base - the Internet Exchange customer.