Telecom will enter the commercial ATM market in earnest later in the year, offering a range of business solutions as part of a five-year plan for broadband networking technology.
Telecom says its new services will be delivered on what it describes as "New Zealand's first dedicated ATM service platform". Clear Communications and Continuum began offering ATM services last year, but Phil Turnbull, Telecom product manager for broadband services, says Telecom "will offer the broadest range of ATM services and customer support in the country".
Turnbull says Telecom will focus initially on LAN bridging, providing high-speed connections which utilise the customer's existing LAN infrastructure; ATM link, offering wide-area services to customers who have invested in their own ATM equipment; Frame relay to ATM, a service which allows customers to use ATM at some sites and frame relay at others; and 2M Emulation, which provides "point-to-point" 2Mbit/s circuits across the ATM infrastructure, supporting legacy applications such as PBX interconnection.
Telecom has also been conducting its ATM trial - dubbed Opera - since early last year, and Turnbull says the experience gained there and in delivering frame relay and packet services on Telecom's existing ATM-capable platforms wil be valuable. He also expects Telecom's ability to provide "end-to-end" manage of circuits, including access switches, to appeal to customers.
Telecom will initially install network switches in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, with expansion to other centres to follow. Switching equipment has been sourced from Siemens and Newbridge Networks Corporation.