By Neil Denslow
Driven by the growth of additional teclom services and next generation infrastructure, the worldwide service provider routers (SPR) market totalled US1.9 billion last year, according to Gartner Dataquest.
Driven by the growth of additional teclom services and next generation infrastructure, the worldwide service provider routers (SPR) market totalled US1.9 billion last year, according to Gartner Dataquest. The sector ended the year on a positive note, the core SPR segment hitting US$185 million in the fourth quarter. This Q4 recovery suggests that excess capacity may have been utilised and that carrier space spending will resume. The core or carrier class backbone routers were driven by the edge router segment, such as carrier class edge and aggregation routers, which consolidate high speed internet traffic and provide IP services. This was caused by the fact that an increase of traffic in the edge eventually results in more bandwidth requirements in the backbone. "Overall IP routing market growth is a direct result of new market penetration and a trend toward transformation from existing networks to an IP/MPLS consolidation," says Jennifer Liscom, principal analyst for Gartner Dataquest's worldwide telecommunications & networking group. "Customers as a whole are looking for more than just routing functionality. They're requiring value-added services in addition to complementing their existing platforms and expanding to new technologies,” she says.In the vendor competition, Cisco Systems, and to a lesser extent, Juniper dominated the market. The two accounted for 86.9% of all SPR revenue in 2002. Cisco also led the way in terms of shipments, securing 55.3% of the market. Juniper was again in second, spurred on by its lead in the broadband aggregation segment of the market and a 10% increase in the core market in Q4. "Although the SPR market showed signs of levelling off at the end of 2002, the outlook for the market remains relatively flat in 2003," says Liscom. "Strong sales in edge and broadband aggregation routers will lead to recovery in the core, but recovery for the SPR market is still not expected until early 2004."