Disaggregated platforms could address telcos’ “existential problem”

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Network disaggregation technology could address an “existential problem” faced by communications service providers (CSPs), according to a new report from IDC.

Rajesh Ghai, Research Director, Carrier Network Infrastructure, IDC, said, “CSPs have historically managed to keep their routing CapEx in check in the face of exploding bandwidth demand mainly through breakthrough improvements in routing silicon capacity, as dictated by Moore's law.

"However, as Moore's law reaches its limits, the routing industry, led by a few start-ups, has begun to explore new routing architectures to alter routing economics.”

What is network disaggregation?

Network disaggregation – the architectural decoupling of the software that runs on a networking device from the physical device itself – initially emerged in switching at hyperscale and cloud data centres, where network operators and the businesses they supported sought choice and flexibility in the network software and hardware they deployed.

Disaggregated, abstracted and automated data centre networks running on standardised hardware are deployed to support efficient management and operations at scale and usage is now increasing in the communications industry.

Hyperscalers got there first

Brad Casemore, Research VP, Datacenter Networks, IDC, said, "Hyperscalers were the first to embrace and derive compelling value from network disaggregation in data centres of unprecedented scale.

“As the cloud effect reverberates across markets and industries, however, network disaggregation has evolved, moving both up the stack into routing and into a wide range of use cases, not only in datacentres, but also in carrier core and edge deployments, and broader telco cloud strategies.

"IDC recognises a new wave of start-up vendors addressing needs and opportunities for disaggregated routing platforms.”

The report, IDC Innovators: Disaggregated Routing Platforms, 2019 profiles three emerging vendors in the disaggregated routing platforms market:Arrcus, DRIVENETS and Volta have been named IDC Innovators.