Light Reading

SDN at Heart of Telstra-Ericsson Deal

Carol Wilson

Telstra's contract with Ericsson for next-generation optical networking gear announced today will introduce dynamic management of traffic based on Service Provider SDN, continuing work the two companies have already done in software-defined networking. (See Telstra Picks Ericsson, Ciena for Optical, SDN/NFV.)

The deal also represents a successful demonstration of the value of the Ericsson-Ciena partnership announced earlier this year, as the first deal the two have closed together. Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) will continue as Telstra Corp. Ltd. (ASX: TLS; NZK: TLS)'s optical networking provider, supplying its SPO1400 optical gear, and Ciena Corp. (NYSE: CIEN) will provide both its 6500 Packet-Optical Platforms and its Unified Management System, says Håkan Eriksson, head of Ericsson Australia and New Zealand. (See Ciena, Ericsson Embark on SDN, Optical Love Affair.)

"Ericsson has been working with Telstra for some time on Service Provider SDN and recently completed a SDN Service Chaining Field trial and a successful demonstration of a virtual home gateway for consumer residential use," Eriksson tells Light Reading via email. "The work we will be doing will introduce the ability to dynamically manage traffic and allow flexibility and scalability for Telstra's network."

That flexibility will be instrumental in supporting cloud services that Telstra intends to deploy.

Telstra, the largest optical and IP network operator in Australia, has partnered with Ericsson in the past on optical gear, and the two companies conducted SDN trials around service chaining beginning in 2012. The initial work in the SDN arena will be an extension of the previous work on service chaining and virtual Home Gateway trials, he said. (See Service Provider SDN Gets Real.)

Carrier SDN strategies are evolving daily, and you can read more at our SDN news and analysis section, where we look at both carrier and vendor news.

Eriksson says the focus going forward will be on introducing SDN and NFV "that will improve network efficiency and faster delivery of services to Telstra's customers." Specifically, he said, Telstra wants to introduce "new personalized products and services with faster time to market combined with cost effective scale."

As part of that work, the Swedish vendor giant will be implementing SDN controllers, although Eriksson declined to say which controller will be put to use, given his company has multiple options, including one based on Open Daylight technology. In his email response, the Ericsson exec said the work will include "the implementation of SDN controllers across different network domains." (See Ericsson Balances 'Open' Future, Legacy Past and Ciena Develops an SDN Controller.)

— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading

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sam masud
sam masud,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/19/2014 | 3:44:05 PM
Is this a first?

Would this make it the first such deal with a Tier 1 operator aimed at the WAN? Wondering because it seems to me that most of the SDN activity thus far has pretty much involved the datacenter.

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