Verizon is to extend its Ethernet service into Europe and Asia. This will mean that enterprises on these continents will be able to use Ethernet interfaces to tap into Verizon's global network.

Ethernet links to a carrier network can allow enterprises to buy just the bandwidth they need and use the same type of interface used on their LANs. Verizon Business, formed after the merger of Verizon and MCI, has extended Ethernet access to the IP Private Line service created by MCI to cities in Europe and the Asia-Pacific region, said Michael Marcellin, director of Ethernet and IP services for Verizon Business.

The company's pure Ethernet services, as well as Ethernet access to IP Private Line, will be available in London; Amsterdam; Brussels; Stockholm; Milan; Zurich; Paris and Lyon, France; and Frankfurt and Hilden, Germany. In the Asia-Pacific region, Ethernet access to IP Private Line is now available in eight cities: Hong Kong, Tokyo, Osaka, Auckland, Seoul, Taipei, Melbourne and Sydney.

Pure Ethernet services allow an enterprise to handle the connections among facilities in multiple cities as they would an Ethernet LAN, Marcellin said. They are generally best suited to enterprises with fewer than 30 sites.

IP Private Line is better for reaching a larger number of sites using Verizon's routed network, but customers can use Ethernet to reach that service if they want a wider choice of speeds than they can get with leased lines such as a 1.5Mbit/ T-1 or a 45Mbit/ T-3, he said. For customers using IP Private Line, Verizon Business offers Ethernet links ranging from 1M bps to 100Mbit/s. It will offer 1Gbit/s interfaces later this year, Marcellin said. Verizon Business can deliver the Ethernet services over direct fibre connections it has at some buildings, as well as in selected other locations.