Frame Relay: Good for
Another 10 Years?
by Robert Bellman
Published June 2002
Keep it simple, stupid! It's familiar advice that's too often ignored. But the folks who guided frame relay through its formative years took the slogan to heart and were rewarded with lasting success. According to Vertical Systems Group, frame-relay services—first launched in 1991—reached an estimated 1.78 million ports worldwide in 2001 and total revenue of $12.7 billion. In the U.S. alone, frame-relay services earned around $7.6 billion last year—not too shabby considering that U.S. private-line revenue was around $12 billion.
Now the frame relay industry is invoking another cliché: If you can't beat 'em, join 'em. It worked when frame relay was threatened by ATM and promises another life-extending kick as frame faces competition from IP and MPLS. Together, simplicity and cooperation comprise a formula that should earn frame relay a second decade of steady growth.
About the author:
Robert Bellman, president of Brook Trail Research, a consultancy specializing in network technology assessment and marketing.
This article is reproduced by special arrangement with our partner, Business Communications Review.
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