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Utilizing Wavelength Services for Data Center Connectivity

February 28, 2022 No Comments

Featured article by Ginger Woolridge

“Digital growth and acceleration are here to stay, and with that realization comes the need for digital leaders to embrace the technologies and trends that will give their organizations a clear advantage.” – Justin Dustzadeh, Chief Technology Officer at Equinix.

As data center utilization and the creation of data by modern enterprises continues to boom, enterprises are constantly evaluating the most efficient solutions for moving data into, out of, and within their data center and colocation environments. 

Wavelength services have been growing in popularity in recent years as a high bandwidth, often low-cost alternative for data center connectivity. Here’s why. 

What’s a data center?

A data center is a dedicated building, space within a building, or group of buildings, used to house computer systems and their components, in order to run telecommunications networks and for data storage and retrieval.

The systems housed include servers, routers, firewalls, switches, application delivery controllers, cross connections, storage systems, power supplies, and environmental controls such as AC and fire suppression.

These centers are designed to make data delivery and application sharing work for their customers.  Data center resource redundancy is a must along with reliability (service level agreement or SLA-dictated runtime) and security (both physical site security as well as cybersecurity) as these systems are often the backbone of their client’s operations and a critical link to their customers.

But a data center alone doesn’t alone make a network. You need connectivity in and out of your data center environment for it to be valuable.

Enter Wavelength Services…

What are wavelength services?

Wavelength Services is a type of wide area network (WAN) and point-to-point data transport utilizing dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) technology.

Wavelength Services provide high bandwidth, high-speed data transfer over fiber.  This networking solution is highly effective at sending and receiving large data sets, image and video files, and running key applications (email, file sharing, data backup, VoIP, VPN) between company facilities.  They are most often beneficial for organizations with intense data requirements, such as high-volume financial transactions, medical imaging, and R&D information.

Why do Data Centers and Wavelength Services go hand-in-hand?

Wavelength services are ideally suited for the data center environment as they address two particular areas that are a must-have to keep your data center environments:

Ultra-High Bandwidth Capacity

Data centers provide the critical data transfer backbone for their customers, where a large amount of bandwidth is required to move the data into and out of the data center. Wavelength services provide a plethora of bandwidth related benefits:

– Ultra-high bandwidth capacity due to the fiber and DWDM technology. Wave bandwidth capabilities can be up to 1000x those of copper!

– Dedicated bandwidth that moves over a fixed path (= lower latency!)

– The ability to move data over 80 kilometers before needing amplification (versus 100 meters with twisted-pair and 500 meters for coax)

– Interference-free medium versus the Electromagnetic (EM), radio frequency (RF), voltage surges, and crosstalk problems that plague users of the copper alternative

High Bandwidth Enables Disaster Recovery Operations

In 2020, data security and backup took on increased importance as the pandemic saw teams communicating virtually and companies shifting much of their business online.  This led to increased cyberattacks and ransomware events – costing companies an average of $80,000 per attack, up to $2,000,000.

Smart business leaders are increasingly shoring up their mission-critical data with alternate data backup and recovery options.  One of those options is Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS), where providers leverage cloud servers to backup, securely store, and manage the data to make it accessible when the user needs it.

Wavelength Services are an ideal connectivity solution for your disaster recovery data center or colocation environment thanks to their ultra-high bandwidth capabilities.  

Low Relative Cost

Wavelength services are also available at increasingly attractive costs, for a few reasons, making them an even more attractive connectivity solution for your data center environment. 

1. Efficient Economics: The economics of wavelength services are attractive compared to alternative WAN options due to the DWDM technology which allows for multiple, private, high-capacity circuits to be delivered over a single fiber pair.  When a provider can provision multiple circuits over a single strand, they can offer lower prices.

2. Supplier Ecosystem: In recent years, more and more telecom providers have enabled wavelength services within their fiber footprint. More supply means lower costs for the consumer. This trend of increased supply is projected to continue over the coming years. 

Wavelength Services Pricing Data

Pricing data sourced from this Wavelength Services Pricing Guide illustrates how Wave Services are a cost-effective solution vs other wide area networking alternatives.

Below is a chart summarizing wavelength services cost per bandwidth on average.


To make the most of your data center environment, a high-bandwidth, reliable, and cost-efficient wide area networking solution is a must have.  

Wave Services are an ultra-high bandwidth option for data center connectivity, and more and more providers are beginning to offer the service – resulting in more consumer optionality and lower prices. 

Next time you’re procuring connectivity for your data center environment, check out Wavelength Services. 

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