Masergy today launched its version of virtual customer premise equipment (CPE), a Cloud Router product that provides cloud-based routing to enterprises with remote offices or other locations where on-premises hardware isn't needed.
As with other approaches to vCPE, this one has the benefits of reducing complexity for customers who don't want to maintain routers and enabling the service provider -- in this case, Masergy Communications Inc. -- to deliver more flexible services more quickly. (See Masergy Introduces Cloud Router.)
The Cloud Router is now the second option in Masergy's portfolio of easier CPE solutions, the first being its traditional managed router service, where Masergy manages the on-premises hardware for its customers. The third option, distributed virtualized routers, which will incorporate a virtualized machine into a Masergy bridge device, will be introduced by June, promises CTO Tim Naramore.
The Cloud Router option has appeal for branch offices -- particularly those overseas -- where an enterprise isn't looking to provide functionality requiring a hardware box such as backup circuits for failover or QoS marking, Naramore says. The upfront cost of the box is one advantage, but the real appeal is in having one less box to power, maintain and worry about, as well as one less coordination point when setting up a new service.
As a managed services provider, Masergy deals with a range of local access service providers to turn up the local loop, and having the local technician turn up before the access box is delivered is a regular headache, Naramore says. Eliminating that step reduces aggravation for both Masergy and its customers.
Masergy is using its existing Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU) 7750 service routers -- a product it began deploying way back in 2004 -- to centralize the Cloud Router function in its colocation points, as well as its existing Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) core routers, being used in a multi-tenant fashion, to deliver the new capabilities, Naramore says.
The Cloud Router service is priced based on the bandwidth being delivered to the customer.
— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading