In a move to make digital subscriber line service more business-friendly, Alcatel SA has added new features to its DSL access management platform that will help carriers get more bang for their buck and -- in theory -- pass along the economies to customers.
The enhanced Alcatel 7300 Advanced Services Access Manager, or ASAM, released today, is built to broaden a carriers DSL footprint, quicken customer activation and enable new, higher-end, differentiated services for enterprise customers.
At the heart of the improved platform is an Internet Protocol services module, which makes it easier for carriers to set up new circuits for new subscribers, among other things, according to Jay Fausch, senior director of marketing at Alcatel. By moving network intelligence to the access manager, the IP module allows the carrier to terminate traffic on the platform. Accompanying management tools oversee each subscription linked to the ASAM, automating the configuration process on each DSL line. "This will cut days out of provisioning," Fausch said.
The Paris-based vendor doubled the density of line cards in the upgraded platform, expanding its reach and at the same time requiring less power consumption. The 7300 ASAM can now support as many as 1,296 lines per 12-inch rack. "What were doing is increasing the density of the DSLAM itself," Fausch said. "Space is money."
Service providers using the updated product can offer a variety of business-grade quality of service contracts from the same platform. "Carriers can sell a specific class of service and charge accordingly," Fausch said. "Not much of that has gone on in the DSL world so far."
France Telecom is deploying the enhanced ASAM, and several major local exchange carriers in the United States are evaluating it, Fausch said.
The IP service module allows carriers to provide high-end services, such as video-on-demand, online gaming and music download, more efficiently.