Microsoft revealed on December 9, 2022, via a blog post that it has acquired Lumenisity Ltd., the UK-based developer of hollowcore fiber. Microsoft says it plans to use Lumenisity’s technology to improve the latency performance and security of its global cloud infrastructure in support of the Microsoft Cloud Platform and services.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Hollowcore fiber, as the name suggests, uses a hollow structure that enables optical signals to travel through air rather than the silica of conventional fibers. Transmissions therefore do not suffer the degradations associated with travel through silica cores, particularly latency.
Lumenisity was founded in early 2017 as a spin out from the University of Southampton, where the company’s patented nested anti-resonant nodeless fiber (NANF) was developed. The company’s CoreSmart cable has seen deployments with euNetworks, among others.
Microsoft says Lumenisity’s hollowcore fiber cables can reduce latency by 47% versus traditional cables as well as provide increased security and intrusion detection because of the fiber’s inner structure.
The company also believes that hollowcore fiber could enable ultra-low signal loss transmission that would support longer routes without repeaters. Microsoft believes that customers in the healthcare, financial services, manufacturing, retail, and government sectors could benefit from the network enhancements hollowcore fiber could enable.
According to a source at a PR firm working with Microsoft, existing Lumenisity customers will continue to be able to use CoreSmart cabling "in the near term."
Microsoft will provide additional information in this regard in the future, the source added.