Network equipment makers Ericsson LM and Ciena Corp. are developing products for converged Internet Protocol and optical networks.

Products developed through this collaboration could enable carriers to build networks that can leverage software defined networking features in order to rapidly handle demands for applications and services with less manual labour.

If Ericsson and Ciena succeed in integrating their products, it will also enable the two companies to better compete against Cisco Systems, which currently offers a more complete portfolio.

Under the agreement, Ericsson will sell Ciena’s Converged Packet Optical portfolio, which includes the 6500 and 54000 line of equipment. The Swedish manufacturer stands to benefit from Ciena’s optical products that use technologies such as wavelength-division multiplexing (WDM).

Ericsson will also provide its line of IP routers and its Global Services organization to Ciena.

Ciena and Ericsson are members of the OpenDaylight project.

The project was launched in April last year to develop an open source framework for SDN and Network Functions Virtualizations (NFV). NFV is a concept that will make it possible for carriers to virtualize networks.

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