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The Forrester Wave™: North American MPLS Services, Q1 2006

AT&T Leads In Two Of Three Dimensions In Our Services Evaluation

February 16, 2006


  • By Lisa Pierce,
  • Robert Whiteley III
  • with Brownlee Thomas, Ph.D.,
  • Benjamin Gray

Why Read This Report

Companies that have been using Frame Relay for site-to-site connectivity or ATM for class of service/quality of service (CoS/QoS) functionality are beginning to migrate to networks based on multiprotocol label switching (MPLS) technology. This technology has many advantages: It can support both hub and spoke as well as meshed customer configurations and can support a wide variety of latency sensitive and insensitive applications. Like both Frame Relay and IP, MPLS supports bursting. Its true strength lies in its flexibility: MPLS can provide the performance and dynamic bandwidth characteristics of Ethernet as well as the inherent resiliency of IP routing. Although MPLS will become the core technology to support multiservice networks for virtually all users, providers design these networks today with business customers in mind. To assess how well MPLS providers are supporting North American enterprise customer requirements, Forrester evaluated the strengths and weaknesses of 11 providers across 56 criteria. AT&T leads the pack in both current offering and market presence. This report includes an interactive vendor comparison tool that provides detailed product evaluations and customizable rankings.

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Table of Contents

  • North American MPLS Services Ramp Up For Takeoff In 2006
  • But Buyers Beware — The Devil's In The Details
  • North American MPLS Services Evaluation Overview
  • AT&T Is Best Overall; Verizon And Bell Canada Lead Their Respective Categories
  • Vendor Profiles
  • Supplemental Material
  • Related Research Documents