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Alcatel, Fujitsu join AT&T’s cloud-focused network architecture effort

AT&T deal is facing strong opposition

Alcatel-Lucent and the networking communications arm of Fujitsu have joined AT&T’s ‘User-Defined Network Cloud’ programme, the telco’s bid to rearchitect its core network in a move that will make it more elastic, scalable, and capable of handling massive volumes of IP-based traffic.

Earlier this year AT&T announced a bold move to embrace software defined networking (SDN) and network function virtualisation (NFV) in its core network because of the changes it has foreseen in how customers will use its network.

Underpinning this is the company’s ‘Domain 2.0’ effort, an initiative that sees key vendors like Ericsson and Juniper working with AT&T to develop the underlying technology platform allowing network services and infrastructure to be used, provisioned, and orchestrated like a cloud platform.

As part of the announcement both Alcatel-Lucent and Fujitsu will join in the effort to develop the Domain 2.0 platform.

“The architecture and deployment teams are finalizing their planned introduction of this new architecture, which we expect to roll out later this year and early 2015,” said Tim Harden, president, AT&T Supply Chain.

“We look forward to collaborating with Fujitsu and Alcatel-Lucent to achieve our next-generation network.”

Telefónica is also in the midst of virtualising its network. It hopes to have 30 per cent of new infrastructure virtualised by the end of 2016.

The Domain 2.0 platform is a direct response to both actual and forecast growth in cloud services uptake among AT&T’s customers; legacy networks simply aren’t dynamic, flexible or scalable enough to keep up with the growth in IP-based traffic.

“The rapid growth in IP endpoints requires greater scale and efficiency in handling the number and diversity of devices than we are getting from traditional network solutions. Movement of data to the cloud for use on any device and increasing use of virtual machine models redefines the endpoints and timeframes for provisioning network connections. These drivers require the business of networking to significantly improve the capital efficiency and human operations per unit of business,” the operator said.

“It will allow AT&T and our customers to share a common pool of resources (& CAPEX) and to use those resources in order to compose network capabilities and services on-demand, with elasticity, and driven with orchestration techniques similar to those seen managing the workloads in cloud datacentres.”

AT&T said other benefits associated with its network overhaul include better utilisation of physical assets, more flexibility with customers, greater access to a wider range of suppliers and open source technologies.

Marian, Senior Vice President-Domain 2.0 Architecture and Advanced Services Development at AT&T will be speaking at the SDN & NFV USA Conference in Dallas October 6-8. Register for the event here.

The 7th annual LTE North America conference is taking place on the November 18th-20th 2014 at the InterContinental Hotel, Dallas, Texas, USA. Click here NOW to download a brochure for the event.

The Broadband World Forum is taking place on the 21st – 23rd October 2014 at the RAI Exhibition and Convention Centre, Amsterdam. Click here to download a brochure for the event.

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