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September 5, 2017

Cloud Xpress Fuels European Interconnection Boom

By Jay Gill
Principal Product Marketing Manager

Summer is almost over, but interconnection is as hot as ever.

The metro cloud ecosystem (Figure 1) continues to expand, driven by strong growth in public cloud services, content delivery and other cloud-based applications. In the middle of it all, distributed internet exchanges (IXs), colocation providers and bandwidth providers work together to enable efficient interconnection between all the ecosystem participants.

Figure 1. Metro Cloud Ecosystem

Driven by the metro cloud ecosystem, colocation and interconnection markets are booming around the globe. Looking at Europe as a case in point, global real estate advisor  CBRE projects that colocation space in the major European markets will increase by 20 percent in 2017, and data center and colocation provider Equinix sees interconnection bandwidth in Europe growing at a 44 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) through 2020, reaching a massive 1451 terabits per second (Tb/s). Interconnections using 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) have been growing strongly for years, and more recently demand for 100 GbE interconnection is skyrocketing.

Players in the European interconnection market are experiencing this strong growth in capacity demand and competing vigorously to capture it. Many of them are adopting advanced optical data center interconnect (DCI) systems such as Infinera’s Cloud Xpress Family in order to scale bandwidth as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible and increase their competitiveness. In the interconnection market, the extreme simplicity and scalability of the Cloud Xpress can be a critical advantage, enabling rapid deployment and service activation and turning time into a weapon for the interconnection provider.


The Cloud Xpress Family offers the highest plug-and-play capacity and reach among compact DCI platforms, with simple 1-2-3 provisioning. The Cloud Xpress 2, in particular, delivers 1.2 Tb/s of capacity up to 130 kilometers (km) on a single super-channel line-side output (Figure 2). That means terabit-scale interconnect capacity can be deployed in minutes with a single 1 rack unit (1 RU) platform – no external multiplexers or amplifiers needed and no extra fibers to be connected.

Cloud Xpress 2
Figure 2. Cloud Xpress 2


With Infinera’s Instant Bandwidth, the industry’s first software defined capacity (SDC) solution, all that terabit-scale bandwidth can be software-activated in 100 gigabits per second (Gb/s) increments. That means interconnect providers can pre-deploy capacity for instant turn up, but only pay for the capacity that is needed to align with their revenues. No other DCI solution enables equivalent fast and cost-efficient response to customer demand.

Two recent European projects using the Cloud Xpress illustrate the benefits of simple, scalable DCI:

  • ECIX, the second largest German internet exchange point, deployed the Cloud Xpress to expand capacity between multiple data centers in Frankfurt and deliver 100 GbE services, citing extreme operational simplicity and Instant Bandwidth scalability as important factors in their decision.
  • Core-Backbone, which provides interconnection in central Europe among many other services, recently deployed the Cloud Xpress 2, adding multiple Tb/s of interconnection capacity between the large hubs of Frankfurt and Amsterdam and several regional centers including Vienna and Munich. The plug-and-play simplicity of the Cloud Xpress 2 was key to Core-Backbone’s ability to scale efficiently with a small, nimble operations staff.

These are just two examples added to a growing list of interconnection and IX providers using the Cloud Xpress. Check out these other case studies and announcements to see more:

Are you interested in using the Cloud Xpress to grow your interconnection capacity? Come see Infinera at the European Peering Forum in Lisbon, from 18 to 20 September! Contact us for more information.


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