Lumen unveils uCPE for WAN and IT application management

Lumen Technologies is launching a new on-premises uCPE device, the Lumen Edge Gateway, to deliver virtualized services and improve management of IT applications.

Lumen, formerly CenturyLink, already has a Universal Customer Premises Equipment (uCPE) product for SD-WAN services. Chris McReynolds, vice president of cloud edge product management for Lumen, says the new Lumen Edge Gateway is geared toward customers that want a more co-managed approach to SD-WAN versus DIY, with the option to move to fully managed at the customers' request.

"It's for co-managed and we also have a professional service practice that can come in and do the management should [the customer] choose to," says McReynolds. "We found the right way to build the platform is come in co-managed and give the option of managed on top."

The co-managed approach has gained popularity in part, says McReynolds, as enterprises need additional IT support from managed service providers due to the increase in employees working remotely. The uCPE also assists customers in avoiding vendor lock-in by providing access to multiple SD-WAN vendors as their WAN management needs change over time, says McReynolds.

In addition, McReynolds says Lumen's new uCPE focuses more on improving and consolidating the delivery of IT applications. The Edge Gateway provides access to virtualized SD-WAN, routing, analytics, voice, security, hosted OS and IT applications from a number of vendors at the premise edge for medium to large enterprises. The uCPE integrates with virtualized services from vendors including Versa, Palo Alto, Silver Peak, Fortinet, VMware, Cisco, Netscout, Audio Codes, Ribbon, CentOS, Ubuntu, RedHat and Windows Server.

McReynolds says the uCPE also utilizes Lumen's orchestrator to manage applications across customers' public and private clouds.

"We have an orchestrator that allows you to deploy applications and create virtual machines to these [uCPE] devices. It supports more efficiency around traditional IT workloads … and forward-looking applications," says McReynolds. He adds that the orchestrator also supports use cases such as video analytics for threat prevention or inventory management applications utilized by retail customers.

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— Kelsey Kusterer Ziser, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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