Corning commercializes SD-LAN solution after year of trials
Local area networks (LANs) are key to the operation of business-critical in-building systems, including Wi-Fi, point of sale devices, IPTV, audio/visual tools, building management systems, access control, lighting, other IoT projects and more. Corning has a long history of delivering fiber and in-building cellular and identified LAN as “a really important part of this solution set,” Bill Cune, Corning Optical Communications vice president of network architecture, said in a conversation with RCR Wireless News.
The goal, Cune said, is “to address and enable all of the applications and devices that are in the market right now for in-building,” which goes beyond just wireless connectivity. “Part of the problem that we’re solving is that all of these networks, multiple parallel networks, continue to evolve and they’re crowding up the closets and they’re crowding up the cable pathways.”
As Corning continued to address LAN, Cune said there wasn’t equipment available that was designed to take advantage of distributed fiber and power and “get a solution that’s software-defined. This software-defined LAN solution Corning has announced is optimized for this fiber and power deep to the edge.”
Before commercializing its SD-LAN solution, Cune said the company wanted to “prove to ourselves” the benefits, both technological and business. Working with a customer, Corning deployed its SD-LAN kit in a 430,000-square-foot office building to support Wi-Fi, DAS, security and building management systems and IPTV.
“This is kind of a combination of things here. When they compared this to the traditional way of just doing the LAN, 50% more ports are available for them to use at 84% of the cost. Cost less, get more is kind of the beauty of the LAN side of it.”
Another use case involved a mid-sized hotel with 142 rooms, two amenity decks, and an indoor/outdoor lounge all in need of Wi-Fi, IPTV, point of sale devices and VoIP. “By switching them to fiber all the way to the room the architecture is actually cost effective. We set out to prove that in a hotel…that an all-optical architecture could be more cost competitive.”