Cignal AI: Record Cloud and Colo Optical Hardware Spending in 2Q18

by Andres Schmitt

Ciena Leads Sales to North American Cloud/Colo Operators; Huawei Sees Strong Demand from Chinese Cloud Giants

Sales of optical equipment to the cloud and colo market grew rapidly, reaching record levels in 2Q18, according to the most recent Optical Customer Markets Report issued by networking component and equipment market research firm Cignal AI. Cloud and colo operators such as Google, Microsoft, and Amazon still account for only a fraction of global optical equipment spending but were nearly a quarter of all North American operator purchases during 2Q18.

“While cloud and colo spending is still not near traditional telco demand for optical transport equipment, the balance is shifting. This is particularly true in North America, where cloud and colo operators now provide both technical and financial leadership to the supply chain,” said Andrew Schmitt, Directing Analyst at Cignal AI.

Released quarterly, the Optical Customer Markets Report quantifies optical equipment sales to five key customer markets – incumbent, wholesale, cable MSO, cloud and colo, and enterprise and government. The current report includes results through the 2Q18 and details equipment vendor market share for sales to cloud operators. Regional forecasts, based on expected spending trends by customer market, are also updated.

Additional key findings in the 2Q18 Optical Customer Markets Report include:

  • Incumbent spending accounts for the largest share of all optical spending in the market. In fact, incumbent spending in China is as much as all spending by other incumbent operators worldwide, combined. Outlays by EMEA incumbents increased again in the most recent quarter.
  • Cable MSO spending in North America continues to be very strong and grew both quarter-over-quarter and year-over-year.
  • Ciena led other vendors in direct sales to the cloud/colo market led by strength from the WaveServer platform. Also, newly-combined Infinera and Coriant became the second largest supplier of optical equipment to these customers. Huawei also continues to grow its market share as a result of growing demand from Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent.

About the Optical Customer Markets Report

The Optical Customer Markets Report tracks optical equipment spending by end customer market type and provides forecasts based on expected spending trends on a regional basis. Deliverables include an Excel file with complete data set, PowerPoint summary and Optical Equipment Active Insight.

The report includes revenue-based market size for all end customer markets across all regions, with market share for sales to the cloud and colo segment broken out on a worldwide basis. Vendors examined include Adtran, ADVA, Ciena, Cisco, Coriant, Cyan, ECI, Ekinops, Fiberhome, Fujitsu Networks, Huawei, Infinera, Juniper Networks, NEC, Nokia, Padtec, TE Conn, Transmode, Xtera and ZTE.

Full report details, as well as other articles and presentations, are available to users who register for a free account on the Cignal AI website.

About Cignal AI

Cignal AI provides active and insightful market research for the networking component and equipment market and the market’s end customers. Our work blends expertise from a variety of disciplines to create a uniquely informed perspective on the evolution of networking communications.

Addendum:  Data Center Interconnect (DCI) Market Share

5 thoughts on “Cignal AI: Record Cloud and Colo Optical Hardware Spending in 2Q18

  1. Cignal AI comments on optical news items:

    ADVA brings the Telecom Infra Project’s Voyager solution to the market
    It is not clear that there is a significant difference between a white box optical device that is supplied by a vendor who “provides an open line system, network management capabilities and a full range of à la carte services” and a vendor-specific optical device with open interfaces. Now that ADVA has officially made this commercial, it will be interesting to see how the market reacts. They will probably have some success in the R&D market (where ADVA already has strengths), but not so much in other areas.

    Ciena to Sell its Own Coherent Modules
    The company is staffing up to expand into the components business. As pluggable coherent becomes standardized, multi-source, and technologically viable this is an interesting strategy for a hardware vendor.

    SOURCE: Cignal AI

  2. Hard Work Ahead for Ininera after acquisition of Coriant:

    Infinera officially closed its acquisition of Coriant on October 1, 2018, in yet another example of smaller optical networking equipment vendors absorbed by larger competitors.

    In a recent Active Insight report available to clients, Cignal AI offered an in-depth examination of what lies ahead, post-acquisition, for Infinera. Infinera is a leading supplier of compact modular equipment and has the potential to be the leading vendor to cloud and colo operators. The acquisition’s upsides include an increased customer base and market share, improved economies of scale, greater Tier 1 access and – most importantly – the ability to close the technology gaps in the company’s packet and software product lines.

    Coriant’s integration will not be an easy task for Infinera. The company faces challenges including decisions on legacy products at major carriers, the retention of current Coriant customers (who have different expectations from Infinera customers), technology integration across product lines, and significant distinctions in corporate cultures. These decisions must be made quickly and communicated clearly for the combined company to be a success, and there is not much margin for error.


  3. IBD: Next Big Thing In Cloud Computing Puts Amazon And Its Peers On The Edge

    Edge computing deploys data processing, storage and networking close to sensors and where other data originate. The goal is to process and analyze data locally in real time rather than send it to faraway data centers in the internet cloud and wait for a response of, say, 150 milliseconds.

    Edge computing is the next step that companies like (AMZN) are taking to expand the cloud. Incumbents mean to protect millions or billions of dollars in their revenue from poaching by edge upstarts. Companies new and old are developing relevant hardware and software.

    “I’m convinced edge computing is here to stay,” said Marco Argenti, vice president of technology for Amazon Web Services. “It’s a natural evolution. Not all data needs to be transferred to the cloud to be processed. There might be bandwidth costs, cellular costs or it may be difficult to connect to the cloud. Or, you just need to react really fast, like in the case of a robot.”

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