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Monday, 27 February 2017 16:22

Altice Makes Bold Moves to Virtualize Its Global Mobile Network With Cisco

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Cisco and Red Hat Join Forces to Drive Innovation

Cisco and Altice Group continue to strengthen their alliance to transform Altice’s business operations with new network architectures to help grow revenue, lower costs and improve customer retention.

Altice is a multinational cable, fiber, telecommunications, content and media company with 50 million customers spanning Western Europe, the United States, Israel, and the Overseas Territories.

The companies are collaborating on a long-term project to build a holistic network function virtualization (NFV) platform. By virtualizing key network functions, Altice will be able to speed time to market for new services across its global footprint.

SFR, Altice’s French subsidiary, has been leading this transformation of the mobile packet core infrastructure with an NFV platform architected to support multiple vendors. Co-engineered by Cisco and Red Hat, the solution is based on Red Hat OpenStack Platform, in combination with Cisco® networking, virtualization and data center compute solutions.

The virtualized mobile network platform is already helping SFR realize a series of new benefits, including:

  • Operational excellence: A solution that can flexibly and rapidly scale to deliver on the virtualization promise
  • Agility: Shorter solution deployment time and agility to provide new services by deploying new specific virtualized network functions (VNF) as part of an existing or new service chain
  • CAPEX efficiency and cost control: Significant savings through greater automation; offering better ways to invest capital moving forward
  • Improved workflows: Virtualization is allowing teams to be more agile in the way they collaborate, ending organization siloes

SFR has an aggressive roadmap in place for 2017 to virtualize additional mobile services, utilizing its Cisco-based SDN/NFV core platform.

With 50 percent of the mobile traffic already running on its virtualized platform and 80 percent planned by end of 2017, SFR is well under way in executing on its strategy.

The successful SFR implementation gives Altice the justification to consider similar virtualization deployments throughout its operating companies. This transition can also help Altice converge all mobile packet core services spanning 2G–4G networks into a single virtualized solution, and prepare a smooth transition toward 5G.  

“NFV is a reality at SFR,” said Philippe Le May, SFR CTO, Altice Group. “We are focused on innovating faster and taking bold leaps to transform our network operations, providing our customers with experiences beyond mobile that no one else can match.”

“Our strategy is to enable our customers’ success at growing both profits and revenues by connecting new services and virtualized applications to networks and clouds,” said Yves Padrines, vice president, Global Service Provider EMEAR, Cisco. “Altice is wholly focused on innovation and transforming its architecture to evolve and support 5G services — and is already looking ahead to the next phase of virtualizing the evolved packet core.”

“Red Hat OpenStack Platform enables Altice to create an agile, flexible, and scalable NFV cloud that can meet its modernization goals and deliver new, differentiating services to its customers,” said Radhesh Balakrishnan, general manager, OpenStack, Red Hat. “We are delighted to collaborate with Altice and Cisco on this transformation initiative.”

Cisco is building the simplified, automated and virtualized network platform of the future based on industry-leading software, systems, silicon and services. This enables service providers, media and web companies worldwide to reduce costs, speed time-to-market, secure their networks and sustain profitable growth.


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