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Advantages Of Metro Ethernet over T1 or T3 (DS3)

metro ethernet
More and more business operations of modern days rely on the Internet connectivity. The resource hungry technologies that play an integral role in today's businesses have made it inevitable to embrace the newer and more advanced methods of connectivity between operational sites. The speed of business and the reliability of data transfers have become most important factors of business operation thus requiring the implementation of better connectivity modes over WAN.

Though a large amount of carrier bandwidth is available at decent prices, the metropolitan connectivity is affected by last mile delay. This has a significant impact on the overall operation of the WAN. An easy and cost effective transition to Metro Ethernet could address this issue. Metro Ethernet is a carrier Ethernet technology that is built in accordance with the WAN (Wide Area Network) implementation requirements and at the same time compatible with Ethernet used by the end systems. This Carrier Ethernet technology is provisioned for MAN (Metropolitan Area Network) connectively and hence the name Metro Ethernet.

Metro Ethernet Advantages

Speed issues with T1 and T3 lines: The main advantage of the Metro Ethernet over a T1 or T3 line is the carrier speed. Generally, T1 lines run at a fixed speed of 1.5 Mbps, which could further be increased by bonding several lines together to a maximum speed of 12Mbps. While better speeds could be achieved by bonding more T1 lines, it turns out to be very expensive by the time 10Mbps speed is achieved. A better and cost effective solution would be a T3 (Ds3) line with about 45Mbps over a fiber-optic cable.

Metro Ethernet when provisioned over a fiber optic cable could provide a flexible variation of speeds equivalent to 10Mbps (Ethernet), 100Mbps (Fast Ethernet) and 10,000Mbps (Gigabit Ethernet). With such flexibility, Metro Ethernet further makes it desirable with lower costs in comparison to lease lines with T1 or T3 as the Metro Ethernet providers tend to have nationwide backbones and local fibers dedicated to the metropolitan areas.

ME as a cost effective solution: Apart from the high speed advantages, Metro Ethernet also provides better and cost effective solutions to lower bandwidth requirements with the Ethernet over Copper (EoC). As the name suggests, the Ethernet over Copper is similar to T1 lines provisioned over multiple copper pairs but with a different modulation technology. The unique modulation of the EoC aids a more efficient packet transmission over lesser distances. Ethernet over Copper lines can be obtained at different transmission rates from 1Mbps to 50Mbps, generally charged per Mbps.

Metro Ethernet Availability: Another advantage of the Metro Ethernet is the availability as other lease line connectivity modes like T1 and T3 are dependent on the phone lines provided but the telecom companies. Though it is rare to experience a downtime in lease line connectivity, any little down time could be disastrous to a large business or even a time sensitive small business.

Metro Ethernet Limitations

Though the Metro Ethernet lines can be obtained and operated at much lesser costs than T1 and T3 lines with equivalent speeds, it could be more profitable to keep T1 lines at a place where Metro Ethernet lines are yet to venture especially for lower speed requirements. This is due to the fact that the availability of Metro Ethernet connectivity is limited to availability of fiber-optic cables while the T1 and T3 connectivity could be achieved anywhere with a valid phone line.

However, if a higher bandwidth is required, Metro Ethernet could be very effective both in the sense of total cost and availability. Hence a time sensitive and bandwidth hungry business would need Metro Ethernet connectivity, especially when the existing T1 and T3 lease line maintenance costs are crawling upwards due to bundling of lines.