CenturyLink Provides Quick SDN Update

By Paula Bernier January 23, 2015

When we hear about software-defined networking, the names that most commonly come up are AT&T, BT, DT, NTT, and Verizon. But Monroe, La.-based CenturyLink also has been hard at work implementing software-defined networking.

A recent report about CenturyLink talks about how the company this year is catering to its channel partners with new tools that will enable them to more easily deliver their own services, and that all of the above will be enabled in part by SDN.

So NFVZone thought now would be a good time to check in with CenturyLink about the details of its SDN build out and self-provisioning efforts. Here’s a quick update based on an interview NFVZone did this week with James Feger, vice president of network strategy and development at CenturyLink.

Tell us about CenturyLink’s SDN effort.

Feger: CenturyLink is passionate about NFV and SDN. CenturyLink will continue focusing in this area because it will help us automate operations, reduce our overall cost, remove barriers to entry for new markets, and reduce time to market. We started our journey in 2012 and since then have expanded SDN capabilities deeper into our network in the U.S. and internationally. This service delivery fabric is called the Programmable Services Backbone; it is an enablement platform for CenturyLink’s transformation with NFV and SDN.

AT&T and NTT have both in recent months made available to customers self-provisioning solutions that leverage SDN. And recent reports indicate CenturyLink is preparing to offer this same kind of thing for its partners. What is CenturyLink doing on this front?

Feger: CenturyLink did significant work on back-office optimization in 2014 to enable self-provisioning network capabilities in addition to the capabilities of our CenturyLink Cloud assets, which already offer self-provisioning today for most services. 

Ericsson’s website talks about CenturyLink’s SDN implementation. Is Ericsson CenturyLink’s only named SDN supplier to date?

Feger: CenturyLink has publicly mentioned a supplier company that contributed to an early NFV solution called network-based security. That supplier is Fortinet, a security service company.

To learn more about SDN, join TMC and its partners next week at Software Telco Congress: The NFV & SDN Event, which will be co-located with ITEXPO Miami at the Miami Beach Convention Center.

Edited by Alisen Downey

Executive Editor, TMC

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