Vapor IO, Packet Team Up on 5G-as-a-Service

The two companies are combining Vapor IO's Kinetic Edge platform with Packet's bare metal cloud to offer on-demand capacity and connectivity for wireless carriers.

March 8, 2018

3 Min Read

AUSTIN, Texas -- Vapor IO, the leader in edge computing and edge data centers, and Packet, the leading bare metal cloud for developers, today announced plans to deliver 5G-as-a-Service (5GaaS) deployed to Vapor IO’s Kinetic Edge. This offering consists of 5G capable infrastructure and connectivity deployed to edge locations and packaged as a “pay as you go” service, launching first in Chicago later this year as part of Vapor IO’s Project Volutus.

“As wireless technology moves to commoditized x86 and ARM servers, cloud-like operating models will become the de facto standard,” said Cole Crawford, founder and CEO of Vapor IO. “Spectrum owners should not have to build a distributed data center footprint from scratch when they can lease 5G infrastructure capacity on demand. Through Volutus and 5G-as-a-Service, operators can optimize their CAPEX/OPEX and improve their balance sheet while creating more agility. Both incumbent spectrum owners and new entrants will accelerate their 5G rollouts at lower costs while achieving the privacy and security they have come to expect.”

Just as public cloud providers use hyperscale data centers in centralized locations to deliver compute as a service, Project Volutus, in combination with this 5GaaS offering, will use Vapor IO’s Kinetic Edge micro data centers in regions optimized to deliver 5G-capable infrastructure as a service. Project Volutus ecosystem partners include Crown Castle, Intel, Flex, the Open19 Foundation, Vapor IO, Packet and others.

Delivering 5G-as-a-Service
Vapor IO and Packet will collaborate on the deployment and operations of the 5GaaS offering. Vapor IO will oversee the physical facilities, operate the lit fiber networking, and provide real-time infrastructure management. Packet will operate the compute service as an “on demand” utility, making 5G-enabled infrastructure available in minutes via its portal, API and DevOps integration like Terraform and Ansible. Telcos and spectrum owners, as well as users of unlicensed spectrum, will be able to deploy 5G services using both highly flexible hourly and spot market models, as well as with long-term reservations that offer discounts based on commitments.

“5G-as-a-Service is a logical extension of the centralized cloud computing model, only delivered in edge data centers with carrier-grade equipment," said Zachary Smith co-founder and CEO of Packet. “With this partnership, operators and content players can deploy 5G infrastructure with the agility and economics of the traditional cloud, powering new low-latency services at the network edge.”

Some of the benefits of 5G-as-a-Service include:

  • Disruptive operating model for wireless services: Delivering 5G as a pay-as-you-go utility allows operators to shift costs from CapEx to OpEx and focus on end user services rather than on building and operating cloud data centers.

  • Accelerated deployment of 5G: By offloading capital investment and leveraging shared resources, 5G infrastructure can be deployed much more quickly and at much lower cost.

  • Increased competition and industry agility: The shared, open, and fully-managed infrastructure can support a large number of carriers and spectrum owners, lowering the barriers to entry and making it possible for new and smaller players to compete with incumbents.

  • New services: By using 5G-as-a-Service, operators can easily cross-connect with other tenants on Vapor IO’s Kinetic Edge, making it easy to tap into organizations and developers building new services, including MEC (Multi-Access Edge Computing) and edge cloud services. This paves the way for new, edge-based applications including autonomous vehicles, mobile AR/VR, and low-latency IoT.

The companies will roll out 5G-as-a-Service later this year, first in Chicago, IL, the premiere Project Volutus Kinetic Edge city, with other US cities to follow.

Vapor IO

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