100G Ethernet to the masses


A major part of this is broad market potential. You don't generate a spec for one customer that's out there. While YouTube is one of the content providers I talked about earlier in terms of applications and exploding bandwidth requirements, it is not the only one.

We are also considering the move to HDTV for many households. Comcast charts the difference between standard traffic rates and high-definition traffic rates at 3.5M bit/sec. vs. 19M bit/sec. If you look at the number of HDTVs being sold, that higher rate becomes critical to support.

Will the typical IT or data center manager be affected by the move to 100G Ethernet? People with large data centers will start to feel it if they don't feel it already. Applications will start driving bandwidth requirements of aggregated and individual links. One IT manager I know works in construction and he told me how he could already use 100G today because of the reports his vertical application generates. Each report uses up about 30M bit/sec. or 40M bit/sec. of bandwidth. He's got a 60G pipe handling the load, but he worries that new platforms such as Vista might alter his requirements. He's already looking for workstations with 10G Ethernet links.

The medical industry is another example. The folks working on the human genome mapping could use 100G to share information among university research groups. They already generate reams and reams of data.

There are also MRIs -- the bandwidth requirements for these imaging machines are phenomenal. They can generate 500M bytes of data an hour. Think about the fact that the diagnostics being done for those images is now handled offshore in some cases. That's a lot of data to send back and forth.