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Brocade Calls for UK Superfast Broadband Plan to Refocus on Data Centres

Monday, Mar 26th, 2012 (12:59 pm) - Score 360

Brocade, a global networking solutions provider, has warned that the current drive to deliver superfast broadband services to 90% of the UK population by 2015 desperately needs to “shift in focus” away from home connectivity and onto data centres. The firm claims that failure to do so would risk creating “too much demand” before appropriate infrastructure is in place.

Brocade’s often outspoken country manager for the UK and Ireland, Marcus Jewell, explained that he was worried by how the “government and consumers seem to believe that broadband speeds are entirely reliant on the wire that delivers the service to the premises.” But for people in areas of poor connectivity it’s still the lack of adequate fixed line connectivity, and not data centre capacity, that most frequently holds them back.

Marcus Jewell said:

The traditional argument against building new roads is, that they create more traffic – exactly the same applies for data centres. Additional fibre means more traffic, more demand, more video etc – all amounting to greater pressure on data centres and corporate networks.

As a result of the ever-increasing use of virtualisation technologies, the storage environment has become more complicated. At least as important as fibre-to-the-home – arguably more important – is ensuring high speed, availability and bandwidth in these complicated data centre networks.

The government needs to wake up to the urgent need for technologies that do not slow connection speeds at source or we will risk creating the demand before having the infrastructure in place to cope.

Notably, Cochrane’s comments, focusing on homes and fibre, neglect a very real and present trend in mobile communications and BYOD, but more worryingly they completely ignore the long-term evolution of networks and 4G. If the government is to rise to these new challenges and meet them successfully – as the economy demands – we need a shift in focus from fibre, to the data centre, now.”

It’s an interesting perspective but at present most of the major operators, such as BT and Virgin Media, claim that they do have enough capacity to cope. Over the past few years many ISPs have also been busy both upgrading and building new data centres.

Naturally Brocade has certain vested interests of its own here but as yet most ISPs appear to be upgrading their infrastructure to cope, just as they’ve always done.

By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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