Verizon launches Virtual Network Services for enterprises

  • Verizon launches Virtual Network Services for enterprises

Verizon launches Virtual Network Services for enterprises

Verizon said it will initially offer enterprises the ability to virtualize Security, WAN Optimization, and SD WAN services. "AT&T is determined to build their own architecture, even if it is open source, with white boxes, so their platform is vendor-agnostic".

If the major networking vendors such as Cisco and Juniper are concerned about such services cannibalizing their existing product lines, they didn't make that an issue in their dealings with Verizon. Verizon is crafting solutions with partners more than building a whole foundation itself, Chander said.

Verizon is making three deployment options available to businesses: on-premise universal CPE; cloud-based virtual CPE services, available from the autumn; and a hybrid model, which enables customers to mix premises-based and cloud-based offerings. Juniper will make the initial on-premises equipment, which Verizon describes as "more like a server" than existing single-purpose appliances and Verizon will manage and service the devices as part of the VNS offering. (NYSE: JNPR) on virtual CPE, virtual routing and security; Riverbed Technology Inc.

"This deployment of the network cloud-based solution will happen in over 30 global markets by the end of this year", said Victoria Lonker, director of product and new business for Verizon, in an interview with FierceTelecom.

There are multiple service pricing models including monthly, a-la-cart, contract and non-contract. In some countries there are hard import restrictions on certain customer premises equipment (CPE), and Verizon would in theory be able to offer virtualised services directly to customers that did not have the physical hardware. Using Cisco and Viptela equipment, the SD-WAN service allows business customers to "mix and match" private and public IP connections such as MPLS, wireless LTE, broadband and Ethernet. Verizon also says customer premises hardware from vendors like Cisco will be able to run services from competing vendors in the future.

"Virtualization in the data center enabled an elastic and scalable application layer and that meant new apps could be deployed much more quickly and the necessary compute and storage could flex accordingly", says Verizon's Locker.

"Just like Verizon, customers need efficient and resilient ways for apps to safely get to multiple destinations using multiple networks ... they need solutions that offer integrated management from the app, to the cloud, in a simple way that hopefully also decreases their total cost of ownership", Lonker told CRN.

One benefit for Verizon customers of the "as-a-service" model is that they don't have to worry about software licenses or long-term contracts, Lonker notes. "They're already offering SD-WAN (and have) taken a little more holistic approach".

Though the basic ideas are the same, Verizon's approach to virtual services is different from AT&T's, IDC analyst Nav Chander said. They seem to be emphasizing hardware and to me it's all about software now.

"We believe that is important, because customers can start with an SD-WAN and add other virtual network functions on top of it", Lonker notes.

Since numerous Verizon's business customers have locations that stretch across multiple markets, the telco can deliver these virtual services over a mix of public, private and wireless networks from Verizon or other service providers, or a combination of multiple providers across multiple networks.