Unless you’ve been living in a monastery for the past couple years, it is pretty obvious that cloud services are the wave of the future. But since monks are now using cloud services, too, even then you probably know that the cloud is important.
The pervasive awareness makes the carrier cloud all the more necessary for network operators to stay not just relevant but critical to enterprise customers. Instead of just providing the network, carriers have the opportunity to offer up their own cloud offerings to businesses, government and consumers. The advantage of the carrier cloud is that unlike many cloud providers, carriers control both the cloud and the underlying network hardware—which gives them a distinct advantage if deployed properly.
CloudBand, an Alcatel-Lucent (News - Alert) carrier cloud solution, helps carriers streamline the process of offering cloud services and optimizes these services to take advantage of this carrier advantage.
“Service providers can offer end-to-end cloud services because they operate both the cloud and network infrastructures, according to a recently published solutions sheet, Alcatel-Lucent CloudBand: bringing the power of the network to the cloud, “Service providers can configure these two layers to optimize customer experience, for example, by provisioning paths with the bandwidth or delay required by a service.”.
The CloudBand solution constitutes two distinct elements:
- CloudBand Management System
- CloudBand Nodes
CloudBand Management System: manages multiple cloud nodes as well as federated resources from other clouds such as Amazon’s EC2. This lets providers look at all resources as a single carrier-grade pool, and it uses advanced algorithms by Alcatel-Lucent’s Bell Labs (News - Alert) to deliver services in the most efficient way based on business logic such as location, cloud node availability, system response time, network usage and service level agreements, according to the solutions sheet.
CloudBand Nodes: is a preconfigured turnkey solution that allows service providers to immediately implement CloudBand. It consists of hardware and software with a built-in management layer and automated commissioning capabilities. CloudBand Nodes is delivered in three predefined form factors, uses third-party cloud stacks, offers a northbound API to communicate with the CloudBand Management System, and is pre-integrated, mounted and tested before delivery, according to the Alcatel-Lucent solutions sheet.
Up to 80 percent of a service provider’s service delivery infrastructure can be positively impacted by CloudBand, according to the solutions sheet, reducing both CAPEX and TCO.
“The Alcatel-Lucent CloudBand solution provides the foundation for a new class of carrier cloud,” according to the solutions sheet by Alcatel-Lucent. “It enables communications service providers to bring the benefits of the cloud to their own network and business operations. It also allows them to offer a new range of high-performance cloud services to their enterprise and consumer customers.”
The speed at which enterprises of all sizes are not just investigating but are actually moving to the cloud is picking up momentum. Service providers who wish to move as fast as the market and leverage the enormous opportunities being created may wish to take a long look at CloudBand is their path to the monetization of this fast moving market.
Edited by Peter Bernstein