Verizon, Cisco and Juniper Networks partner to combine service edge routers using SDN

01 May 2018 | Natalie Bannerman


Verizon, Cisco and Juniper Networks are working together to use software-defined networking (SDN) to combine all of its service edge routers into a single platform.

Working across Ethernet and IP-based service edge routers, the newly aggregated platform will improve the operational efficiency of the companies’ network while at the same time adding increased functionality and flexibility.

“Software defined networking continues to deliver on its promise to improve network management and also enables us to be more nimble in the ways we serve our customers,” said Michael Altland, director of network infrastructure planning at Verizon. “By decoupling the control plane from a carrier-grade provider edge routing platform and moving it to general compute servers, we can serve our consumer and enterprise customers from the same platform, giving them all the functionality they need, while running our networks far more efficiently. This will also allow us to take advantage of future advances in server technology as our networks continue to grow.”

The new offering features a disaggregated control plane and uses external compute to enhance the capabilities of the control plane surpassing that of a traditional router.

“Next-generation services that require low latency and real-time response are moving closer to users at the network edge, creating new gains in performance and business agility,” said Bikash Koley, chief technology officer at Juniper Networks. “At Juniper Networks, we’re devoted to engineering simplicity and are proud to collaborate with Verizon to enable a solution capable of offering multiple services on a singular platform, leveraging virtualization and software disaggregation at scale.”

For Verizon in particular by simplifying the network’s edges it is able to implement process improvements in the deployment and provisioning of infrastructure on its networks, as well as in the areas of Ethernet, internet and VPN-based services. The company is also able to respond quickly to technological changes in the industry, meaning that its customers are able to adopt changes in their technology a lot faster.

“Verizon continues to cross key milestones in transforming its networking practices to maximize performance and simplify operations. With this new flexibility, Verizon can develop and launch innovative services for its customers faster, with improved efficiency,” added Sumeet Arora, senior vice president of engineering for the service provider business at Cisco.

Rollouts of the new solution began on the Verizon IP networks at the beginning of 2018 and are due to complete at the end of 2019, at which point it will replace all of the legacy edge router functions in Verizon networks.