Equant says it will launch an application-monitoring service for data customers around the world by year-end.\nATLANTA - Equant says it will launch an application-monitoring service for data customers around the world by year-end.The service, called Application Visualizer, will let\u00a0IP VPN,\u00a0frame relay and\u00a0ATM customers outsource application monitoring and reporting to Equant.Equant has deployed software and hardware from Compuware to support the service. Using probes, Equant says it will be able to gather real-time application performance information that will let users quickly fix problems on their networks. The data will be stored in a repository in the U.K. where customers can access application-performance reports via a Web browser."This service, while not totally unique, is a fairly new offering for carriers and network service providers," says Sandra Palumbo, analyst at The Yankee Group. "This type of service takes a holistic approach of managing a businesses infrastructure by looking at both the network and the applications."Infonet is offering a similar service called Application Defined Networking, she says.Equant Application Visualizer customers also will be able to set specific performance thresholds for individual applications that will trigger alerts. For example, response time for SAP might be a performance metric a customer would want to track regularly, says Kumar Perianayagam, product manager at Equant. If the application slowed down, an alert would be sent to that customer. Equant then would track the source of the application slowdown.Rules of replacementSix simple steps to sail through software swapping.\u2022Track 2,900 standard applications as well as custom applications.\u2022Access real-time application- performance reports. \u2022Receive alarms based on customer-specific thresholds about application performance.\u2022Realize source of performance problems.\u2022Access individual usage information for departmental charge-backs.Users also can view daily, weekly or monthly reports related to many applications."The new service provides customers with true application-level monitoring, reporting and tracking," Perianayagam says. The service can track 2,900 off-the-shelf applications and custom or proprietary applications.Customers are particularly interested in application monitoring because when an application is not performing well or is unavailable, hundreds or even thousands of employees could be affected, she says.While Application Visualizer is geared toward Equant data customers, the service can be supported over other service provider networks. Many users buy data services from multiple providers for network redundancy and diversity. Equant can monitor applications that are connected to a customer's data network via other carrier networks as if they were exclusively using Equant's network services.Customers will pay a one-time installation fee and a monthly charge based on the number of points that are monitored. The monthly fee includes maintenance, equipment, report access and consulting.Equant says the service will be available by year-end.