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3/25/2016 | 1:35:20 PM
Centurylink at OFC

Bill Walker, CenturyLink's Director, Network Architecture and Innovation, in Anaheim at OFC (Optical Fiber Conference) earlier this week, was very bullish on the company's data center strategy. The company sees its data center infrastructure as a key element of its migration from a telco to a global communications company (Walker said the company has 55 facilities located around the world).

He was extremely enthusiastic about SDN and NFV as enablers of Centurylink's transformation, but went on to note that SDN is only a first step.

"SDN is a great start, it's a great first step, but it's just forwarding and routing, and that's not good enough. We need a model of the network."

The company needs to know not only what network elements it has in its own network, he explained, but also what elements are available through partner/competitors such as AT&T, Verizon and Comcast, so when a Centurylink customer orders a service, Centurylink's network will be able to know whether or not it can provide that service, and if it can, how.

And when a customer orders a service, the customer should be able to order in business language without having to be conversant in the technical details and specifications of MPLS.

--Brian Santo


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