1. Zayo Adds To Growing List of Educators Using Carrier Ethernet

    CEN Feature (Feb 21 2012)

    1. Zayo Adds To Growing List of Educators Using Carrier Ethernet

      Local school districts across the nation are aggregating the many sites they oversee onto a single computing platform and cloud of services. As they make the leap from distributed to centralized architectures, their need for bandwidth skyrockets. Going from legacy T1 services to 10 Mbps or 1G Ethernet seems like a big jump at first, but most forward-looking school district CIOs know they are going to need 1G or more to pull off the type of transformations they are undertaking, according to John Real, Vice President Ethernet Services for Zayo Group.

      Zayo recently added Idaho’s Meridian Joint School District to the growing number of education customers it serves. Zayo is providing Meridian with 100 Mbps Carrier Ethernet service via its dedicated fiber network. Meridian is using Zayo’s E-LAN service to connect 49 schools and administration buildings, says Real. Examples of applications that education networks typically support include VoIP, video and back office applications like Infinite Campus software.

      “We have provided Ethernet over fiber for more than 20 school districts, both directly to the school districts, as well as through wholesale relationships with partners that offer complimentary services such as VoIP,” says Real.

      Like many other Carrier Ethernet providers, Zayo is focusing on the education market because customers’ many locations are geographically focused in a single metropolitan area or region. With its deep fiber network in 42 states and Washington, D.C., Zayo is well positioned to meet the needs of school districts that are looking to save money as they increase the breadth and depth of the services they provide to their staff and students, he adds.

      “We have been in this segment for a long time,” says Real. “The offering has evolved as the traffic and demands they put on the network have increased.”

      While the school districts typically build their own data centers and have been running their own private clouds for quite awhile, connectivity back to those clouds has become increasingly important, he explains.

      “In addition to the data cloud, there has been a movement to a voice cloud as well,” says Real. “The switch to district-wide VoIP networks vs. PBXs has been a trend over the last few years. 

      Internet access, software as a service, hosted services from both in- and out-of-district all add to the demands on their networks and IT staffs, he adds.

      “I think the next big jump with regard to Ethernet will be demand for much more bandwidth,” says Real. “To meet their requirements they are going to need 1G connections or more dedicated to each school.”


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