Everest lets users scale bandwidth a step at a time

Everest Broadband, a building service provider targeting the multitenant unit market, this week introduced two new offerings designed to allow customers to provision their own network-based applications and bandwidth.

Everest's Liquid MegaBit service enables users to dynamically set their Internet bandwidth, which can range anywhere from 1M bit/sec to 45M bit/sec. Companies can burst traffic up to twice the throughput of their dedicated capacity.

Liquid MegaBit and Everest's other wares, which include network management, e-mail, security and application services, are enabled through the company's second new offering -- the Everest Xpress E-care Portal.

By entering a user ID and password into the Web-based E-care portal, Everest customers will be able to dynamically order bandwidth and check service levels and trouble ticket status. They'll also be able to order applications from third-party application service providers that partner with Everest.

Everest is still finalizing plans to roll voice into its service mix. By June the company hopes to offer voice over IP based on session initiation protocol and softswitches.

"At the end of the day, all the money allotted for IT should be coming to us if we're doing our job," says Joe Varello, Everest's vice president of marketing.

Everest offers services targeted at small and midsize businesses in about 200 buildings. Varello says the company is fully funded, having raised around $72 million since its creation in late 1999.

Unlike some metropolitan Ethernet providers, Everest does not build its own metropolitan area fiber rings. Instead the firm installs a metropolitan point of presence in a city, signs up building owners, runs fiber through the buildings and connects the fiber to its Intelligent Service Nodes located in the building basements. The service nodes are Layer 3 Ethernet switches.

Everest contracts metropolitan fiber providers to connect the buildings back to Everest's points of presence.

Companies are struggling with economical ways to get more bandwidth, and Everest's Liquid MegaBit should be well received, says Maribel Dolinov, an analyst with research firm Forrester Research.

"This gives them what they're looking for, because it allows them to scale up and down as they need the bandwidth," she says.

This story, "Everest lets users scale bandwidth a step at a time" was originally published by Computerworld.

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