As business needs continue to evolve, using WAN virtualization can help service providers address changing demands. While consumers are moving toward communication services driven by mobile applications, social media, and video content delivery, enterprise IT organizations are transitioning from traditional physical networks to cloud-based services. Between these two major shifts, an increased amount of complex traffic is bogging down wide area networks (WANs).
Current hardware-based methods can be expensive due to implementations that require specific and pricey hardware. So, service providers want to provide customers with more services that are delivered on-demand, in a scalable pay-as-you-go service model. With WAN virtualization, it’s possible to adapt for changing user bandwidth consumption patterns, and shift networks from static to on demand.
In a new white paper from Ciena, the argument stands that cloud-based on-demand services can help service providers change how they deliver managed services, while increasing profitability by allowing them to create new applications and services easily. To quickly and efficiently (not to mention, cost-effectively) deliver new services and applications to meet enterprise demands, service providers need a programmable network that can easily shift and redistribute resources on-demand.
Ciena Agility gives service providers that capability. With network functions virtualization (NFV) as the cornerstone, Ciena recently announced two pieces of software that will be added under the Agility Matrix namesake, VNF Market and Director. The former will provide a “cloud catalog similar to app store” for virtual network functions (VNFs), and the latter streamlines operations, supports OpenStack, and supports ETSI MANO.
Ciena’s VNF Market ties back to the pay-as-you-go model, enabling service providers to skirt payment for VNF licenses until enterprises put them to use – pay-as-they-earn. Vastly different from the current model in place today, pay-as-you-earn offers a better-suited infrastructure investment that will match consumption patterns and won’t leave service providers at a loss if customers don’t come running.
For service providers, the case for WAN virtualization rests in that network-only services delivered from proprietary hardware-based infrastructure is costly and often diminishes their bottom line. With NFV, VNFs can be chosen or created, and with software-defined networking (SDN), their connection can be easy and automated. Moving toward content- and compute-centric applications that are delivered in and from the cloud modifies consumption preferences and service models, as well as delivery infrastructure.
Alongside the savings of this model, with the help of SDN, Ciena Agility also offers just that: instead of taking weeks to install equipment for new services, this process is cut to mere minutes. Another benefit of shifting toward WAN virtualization and on-demand consumption? Both consumers and enterprises prefer it.
Ciena’s strategies aim to help service providers achieve a pay-as-you-earn model and bring managed services to customers in a flexible and easy way. To learn more about how SDN and NFV can help migration to the cloud and on-demand consumption, download your copy of the Ciena white paper “Leveraging Consumption-Based On-Demand Services.”