YouTube Gets Bandwidth Boost from Level 3

Level 3 will provide big-pipe connectivity to help the the video portal YouTube keep up with its rapid growth.

Level 3 Communications will provide big-pipe connectivity to help the video portal YouTube keep up with its rapid growth, the two companies said today. Under the terms of the agreement, Level 3 will speed YouTube's video delivery with high speed Internet access through multiple 10 gigabits per second (10GigE) ports across a nationwide fiber network connecting YouTube's data centers.

"We selected Level 3 because we needed a carrier with a highly advanced, stable, scalable network and a service portfolio that would enable us to manage the magnitude of growth that we continue to experience with more than 100 million videos being watched per day on our site," said Steve Chen, chief technology officer and co-founder at YouTube.

YouTube has been one of the Web's breakout hits, hitting the spotlight late last year with the popularity of the "Lazy Sunday" video from Saturday Night Live's Andy Samberg and Chris Parnell (which was later "reclaimed" by NBC and moved to its site). YouTube's subsequent popularity has led to substantial bandwidth requirements, estimated by some reports to cost up to $1 million a month.

"Level 3's network was built for bandwidth-intensive applications like video, and this agreement with YouTube is a prime example of the larger trend we're seeing for increased capacity demand," said Brady Rafuse, president of Level 3 Content Markets group. "We admire YouTube's creative innovation and are excited to help facilitate their rapid traffic growth."

10GigE LAN PHY, a dedicated Ethernet point-to-point service, is now available as a standard enhancement to the Level 3 intercity wavelength service. The service is available across the majority of Level 3's fiber-based network in the United States and in Europe, including extensions to key metropolitan points of presence.

With its 10GigE LAN PHY offering, Level 3 enables customers to leverage cost-effective and familiar Ethernet technology to build and grow large IP backbones or storage networks.

"Level 3 is a leading provider of wavelength and other high capacity services, and 10GigE LAN PHY services are a natural extension to our service offerings," said Rafuse. "Customers can immediately take advantage of Level 3's early network investment in new technology, as well as our extensive coverage in North America and Europe."

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