Ethernet: AT&T, Other Incumbents Grow More Slowly Than Comcast, Cablecos

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By Perry Vandell

Cable companies are growing their Ethernet sales faster than the incumbent telcos, but they’re behind when it comes to innovation.

That assessment comes from research firm Vertical Systems Group, which has released a report ranking the incumbent carriers in terms of carrier Ethernet services sales in the U.S.

AT&T is tops, followed in order by Verizon, CenturyLink and Windstream. VSG’s rankings are based on the number of billable retail ports in 2014.

“As a group, incumbent carriers had slower Ethernet growth than competitive providers or cable MSOs,” said Rick Malone, principal at Vertical Systems Group. “However, incumbents made considerable service advances in 2014, including investments in fiber builds and stronger integration with other offerings. Despite the challenges of mature technologies and a cost structure that can be uncompetitive for out-of-region sites, incumbents lead in the delivery of more complex nationwide networks.”

The news follows last month’s release of Vertical Systems Group’s Carrier Ethernet Leaderboard, which ranked all providers that offer carrier Ethernet. Level 3 Communications made the biggest surge, moving up to second place, thanks much to its acquisition of rival tw telecom earlier in the year.

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