Sophisticated consumers are willing to pay a premium for highly personalized online experiences such as “anywhere, anytime” access to applications, computing, and storage. While cloud computing makes it possible to develop and deliver these highly customized services in near real time, traditional hardware-centric edge networks can’t adapt to these changes that quickly. The result: performance and bandwidth bottlenecks that prevent service providers from meeting customer expectations and fully monetizing their cloud investments.
Service providers can overcome these challenges with network function virtualization (NFV), which transforms the network edge into a more responsive, service-centric platform. A new white paper from Juniper Networks explains why routers—the foundational service element in the network edge—are ideal targets for virtualization. The paper also examines the challenges facing virtualized edge routers and the benefits they provide in specific use cases.
The paper emphasizes that determining whether to deploy physical or virtualized routers—or a combination of both—is a business decision, not a technical one.
The paper explores which networks are best suited for virtualization, highlights specific use cases for virtual routers in the network, and outlines the business benefits of virtual routers, including:
- Improved service agility: Providers can introduce new services quickly without disrupting current services or the physical routers that support them.
- Ability to build best-in-class solutions: Providers can avoid vendor lock-in and choose suppliers that best meet their business goals and end-user needs.
- Cost-effective redundancy: By virtualizing elements such as routers, firewalls, load balancers, and caches, providers can allocate capacity on x86 servers to provide a shared pool for all applications, rather than the typical 1:1 redundancy.
- Improved sales and market opportunities: Using virtualized routers, service providers can efficiently lease rack space or network capacity and avoid prolonged equipment and facility qualifications.
- Consolidated services: Instead of implementing multiple individual elements to physically isolate different customers, service providers can segment a single x86 server into multiple virtual “elements,” as with virtualized customer premises equipment (vCPE).
Used in the right settings, NFV and virtualized edge routing create a tremendous competitive advantage and help service providers become a valued partner to their customers. Read the white paper to learn more about how providers can use these technologies to efficiently deliver edge services to business, residential, and mobile consumers.