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AT&T reveals strategic rethink; cloud to feature big

Cloud is a big part of AT&T's future

Cloud is a big part of AT&T’s future

US carrier AT&T jumped well and truly onto the Cloud bandwagon this week, announcing a future network vision dubbed the “user defined network cloud”. Despite the clunky name, the initiative is designed to transform AT&T from a slow-moving behemoth into a technology innovator, according to analysts.

The foundation for the initiative is the company’s Domain 2.0 supplier programme, which this week revealed Ericsson, Tail-F Systems, and Metaswitch Networks to be key contributors, while Affirmed Networks has been chosen to work with on a virtualised Evolved Packet Core.

The User-Defined Network Cloud initiative is to be integrated with AT&T’s Wide Area Network (WAN) and will make heavy use of Network Function Virtualization (NFV) and Software Defined Networks (SDN) to separate hardware and software functionality; separate the network control plane and forwarding planes; and improve management of functionality in the software layer.

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