Frame Relay vs APN
Modern networks in fact rarely use Frame Relay to deliver traffic in large quantities across the Internet backbone. For that, and largely to address the weaknesses of Frame Relay, the ATM protocol was developed in the 1990s. ATM and Frame Relay even share a great deal of terminology, such as Permanent Virtual Circuit (PVC), and similar capabilities such as the delivery of multiple PVCs over a single physical connection. Today, most often the Frame Relay endpoints are mapped at central office locations and aggregation switches into ATM services, transported across a carrier’s backbone, and back to Frame Relay in the destination city. The repeated protocol translations add latency and reduce overall performance of the resulting private network. The weaknesses in Frame Relay that were addressed will continue to increase in importance as more and more traffic transits the Internet and as new hardware and services are developed.
Acceleration’s view is that since there is no financial restriction or pre-existing reason to deploy more Frame Relay circuits, and realizing that new features are more likely going to be developed that utilize ATM services rather than Frame Relay, it is in the best interest of most companies to deploy connectivity using newer ATM technologies.