AT&T has launched a new solution that lets businesses easily and flexibly manage their network services. AT&T Network Functions on Demand is now available in 76 countries and territories. With it, businesses can deploy a single universal piece of equipment, choose virtualized functions, and deploy them in different countries simultaneously. (Virtual routers from Cisco and Juniper Networks, Fortinet virtual security, and the Riverbed (News - Alert) virtual WAN accelerator are the first solutions to be supported under AT&T Network Functions on Demand.) That takes a process that typically takes months and shaves it down to just minutes, the company suggests. "Building networks by deploying network functions in software is a major shift in network design," noted Ralph de la Vega, vice chairman of AT&T Inc. and CEO of AT&T Business Solutions and International. "We've broken through traditional, cost-prohibitive barriers. Our software platform delivers a simple, flexible and efficient experience for any business, virtually anywhere and anytime they need it."
Meanwhile, Verizon Enterprise Solutions now offers what sounds like a similar capability and what this communications service provider calls Virtual Network Services. It too is available globally, and it is delivered via the as-a-service model, enabling customers to operate dynamic networks that can be changed quickly to address the number of company locations and users, bandwidth required by application, and application use by employee. “The way in which network services are delivered is going through an unprecedented shift – the biggest we’ve seen since the broad adoption of MPLS,” said Shawn Hakl, vice president of networking and innovation at Verizon. “Today the network is transitioning to a virtualized model using similar technology that drove the disruption in the data center market. With our new solution set, enterprises will be able to balance agility, performance, cost, and security necessitated by the growth of mobile-to-cloud applications and the Internet of Things.”
UAE Carrier Turns Up vEPC
Etisalat (News - Alert) reports that it has successfully on-boarded its first virtualized telecom function using Affirmed Networks’ virtualized Evolved Packet Core solution. This is part of the carrier’s corporate-wide Sahaab program launched in 2016 to cloudify the network. “This national deployment of vEPC now provides Etisalat with an innovative and flexible way to deliver services and connectivity to customers across the UAE, regardless of their location,” said Esmaeel Alhammadi, senior vice president of network development in Etisalat, and Sahaab program lead. “As an analogy, the NFV telco cloud can be considered like a smartphone, and vEPC is like our first app on this smartphone. With the footprint expansion of this NFV telco cloud, we plan to launch more apps to provide more agile and innovative services to customers, like vCPE for home and business customers and vIMS for multimedia communications.”
Edited by Alicia Young