velcom brings 2G and 3G to the cloud in virtualisation project

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Belarussian operator velcom has shifted its core architecture to the cloud after completing a nine month project with ZTE.

The Telekom Austria subsidiary described the project as the world's first "true" commercial deployment, with all of its 2G and 3G traffic travelling across its virtual core. The operator has yet to launch LTE services.

All of velcom's legacy core network components, including evolved packet core, mobile switching centre, home location register and policy and charging rules function, were moved onto a fully virtualised platform running on OpenStack-based NFV and standard hardware.

Dubbed vCore, velcom said the new architecture has replaced its legacy silo-based hardware, reduced running costs, while introducing more flexibility, and more features and reliability.

The operator said it used ZTE's OpenStack-based Tulip Elastic Cloud System, which offers virtualisation and cloud infrastructure management for computing, storage and network resources. By centralising technical processes, velcom said it is use the system to cut costs, easily roll out new services and increase its network's security and reliability.

The Chinese vendor handled end-to-end architecture and delivery on the project.

Sascha Zabransky, Director Technology, Telekom Austria Group, said: “With this major step towards the next generation network architecture we are able to significantly reduce our OPEX spending, benefit on massive economies of scale for further growth and provide highest flexibility and service value to our customers on the way towards a fully cloud-based network architecture."

Christian Laque, CTO of velcom, added: “By merging our joint expertise, we were able to ensure a fast implementation of one of the most advanced core network architecture as well as the migration of 100 percent of our subscribers in a very short time period. The transformation provides our customers with higher security- and reliability levels. The velcom brand stands for quality and innovative solutions, thus we are happy to have kept our promise.”