The imminent launch of two new Cisco-powered solutions from Global Services intended to bring increasingly virtualised connectivity services to multinational enterprises marked the latest evolution of BT’s Dynamic Network Services strategy.

  • New BT Connect services put BT’s relationship with Cisco front and centre in its efforts to refocus the networked IT division as a global virtualised solutions provider.
  • Greater virtualisation among customers is creating an opportunity for BT to create its own pick ‘n’ mix marketplace in the cloud.

Since BT first heralded its plans to embrace virtualisation and support the migration of customers from traditional hardware-intensive networking solutions to remote management, Cisco has been a lead partner (BTwatch, #280, passim).

The latest phase of the partnership will see the launch of two new Dynamic Network Services (DNS) offerings from BT in the first half of 2018:

  • BT Connect Edge will offer access to network functions that draw on Global Services’ capabilities for design, management, security, and support, but are built on a customer premise equipment virtualisation (vCPE) solution from Cisco. The virtualised services do require dedicated hardware onsite, although this kit is framed as multifunctional, and thus relatively flexible and future-proofed.
  • BT Connect Services Platform integrates Cisco’s network automation and orchestration software platform with the telco’s network services. Through this integrated platform, enterprise customers will be able to deploy virtualised network functions on Connect Edge hardware at branches and remote locations “within hours” of ordering.

Working in tandem, the two offerings are said to accelerate the deployment of new functions such as routing and security on international enterprise networks as part of a migration from hardware-based infrastructure to a fully virtualised environment. The new services can be managed remotely by BT, and the telco highlighted that this will reduce the need for specialist technical staff onsite, with less reliance on bespoke hardware related to adding new functionality.

Elsewhere, BT Global Services has indicated that rising demand from its corporate customer base for solutions that do not require onsite deployments is now a particularly significant driver of virtualisation and the adoption of cloud-based services.

Cisco burrows deeply into BT networks

BT appears (arguably uncharacteristically) willing to spotlight Cisco’s leading role in the development of its Dynamic Network Services, drawing on the vendor’s heritage and experience as it evolves its own portfolio away from its more traditional connectivity strengths into an environment and marketplace where IT muscle may count for more than network reach and reliability. It also seems to be resisting the temptation of an OEM enterpise vCPE play with an open standards angle. That said, in time it will likely extend a multi-track strategy embracing smaller businesses and consumers.

In unveiling the portfolio update, BT talked up its long history with Cisco in showcasing the new products, describing the 25-year relationship as a “key cornerstone of our customer’s future networks”. The specific Cisco technology to be incorporated into the Global Services network, and by extension into its product portfolio are:

  • Cisco Enterprise Network Compute System branch hardware, which is enabling the new BT promise of virtualised functions in branch locations.
  • The Cisco Network Services Orchestrator software platform, and the associated virtualised Branch Core Function Pack, are to become an integral part of Global Services increasingly automated network infrastructure.

BT strives to be a one-stop shop

BT is pushing a view of itself as a services aggregator through the Dynamic Network Services programme, managing the availability of a range of virtualised functions and services from a variety of vendors.

The Global Services division has talked of creating its own version of an app store, effectively reselling virtualised functions from vendors that can be downloaded remotely and integrated into the managed services the division provides.

  • The latest Cisco development on Dynamic Network Services follows the recent unveiling of BT Agile Connect, a software-defined networks solution within the initiative that is built on Nuage Networks’ technology (BTwatch, #289). The Nokia-owned cloud services technology vendor is regularly billed by BT as an alternative to its Cisco-focused offerings.

Image: Umer Sayyam/Unsplash.

Table of Contents

EXECUTIVE BRIEF

GROUP

Deals

Zambia appears on Group radar again [p6]

Ambitions must tiptoe around an emboldened Vodacom
Partner Markets’ Cameroon affiliate goes offline
Table 1 People movement highlights

IT

Vodafone Turkey reaches line on major BSS overhaul [p12]

A happier ending than other convergence-led IT refits
Back from the brink
Table 2 Vodafone Turkey long-term trends overview, FY09-17
Fighting fit
Breaking trail
Spotting the curveballs
Table 3 Vodafone Turkey BSS transformation project overview
The personal touch

Group Commercial

Red Edge expanding behind scenes, targets APAC [p18]

A first step outside Europe

Legal and regulatory

Colao’s “itchy feelings” about Brussels prove prescient [p19]

EU-surped
You don’t like consolidation, do you Brussels?
Suggested code revisions not all bad for Vodafone?

Supply chain

Vodafone ties with American quartet on AI [p22]

Care and networks provide the focus for AI
Vodafone’s new business model – network reduction
Group still looking in-house for data dollars

VMware lifts lid on Group NFV win… [p24]

Table 4 Partner/supplier people movement highlights
… and ties with IBM to give Cloud & Hosting Services a leg up

Profile

Allot [p26]

Breaking out of the capex vault
Biography: Erez Antebi
Customer focus
Virtual reality
New IoT and video use-cases
Operators remain central
Vodafone Secure Net: next steps
Table 5 Vodafone Secure Net availability, October 2017

EUROPE REGION

Ireland

SIRO pulls out of National Broadband Plan tender [p33]

Netherlands
Ericsson extends Dutch networks tie-up [p34]

Accompanying kit deal includes LTE for Machines
A challenge-filled deal backdrop

Portugal

Vodafone boosts broadband cred with NOS tie-up [p36]

Partial win
Table 6 Portugal converged operator user comparison, 30 June 2017
We’re close, but not that close
Mix and match
Table 7 Vodafone European wireline rollout and regulatory agenda
Raised hackles over Altice media-expansion plan

Spain

VfS brings DOCSIS 3.1 upgrade live [p41]

Other markets in pipeline
Table 8 Gigabit Vodafone checklist

AFRICA, MIDDLE EAST, AND ASIA-PACIFIC REGION

Australia — Vodafone Hutchison Australia

VHA preps Vodafone TV release [p44]

Table 9 Vodafone TV customer base comparison by market (‘000)
New Zealand also a Vodafone TV target
NBN plus
Hutch reaffirms Total Comms ambition
Table 10 Selected Vodafone OpCo “4.5G” tests and rollouts (500Mbps and above)

VHA jumps on Massive MIMO bandwagon [p47

VHA knows the recipe but can it afford the ingredients?

Egypt

VfEg ties with Openwave on video management [p50]

New Zealand

VfNZ takes 400Gbps metro route with Ciena [p51]

Ciena feet under Group table

Vodacom Group

Safaricom pushes back against Vodacom control [p52]

Safaricom and Vodacom not yet BFFs
Table 11 Prospective Safaricom ownership, post-2017 Vodacom transaction
M-PESA unshackled: A less-Vodafone-based future emerges, and this may not be a bad thing
Power play as M-PESA goes OTT
The geo-political angle

VdSA moves focus to LAA amid 4G spectrum squeeze [p55]

Lukewarm on LAA
On the spectrum back-foot

FURTHER READING

INDEX

Table of Contents

EXECUTIVE BRIEF

GROUP

  • Q2 FY17-18: Further points of note

MANAGEMENT UPDATE

Q2 FY17-18: gloomy numbers, but turnaround promised [p6]

  • Q2 FY17-18: Further points of note
  • Group Chief looking at the stars
  • Investors want to be shown the money
  • Table: BT Group, financial highlights, Q2 FY17-18
  • Burger the man with the plan at Global Services
  • Q2 FY17-18: Further points of note

Q2 FY17-18: divisions evolving at different rates [p10]

  • Associates on new BT chairman
  • Table: BT Group, performance by unit, Q2 FY17-18 (adjusted) *

As BT puts house in order, new Chair has troubles of his own [p12]

  • Tighter grip on the reins needed
  • BT tying up top legal minds

Government grumbles on Openreach split progress [p13]

Digital Britain

Hancock keeps up bad cop act with BT… [p14]

  • 5G moving up the government agenda

…Hancock’s boss might be the good cop [p15]

  • DCMS intervenes in WLA
  • Not entirely pro-BT, but Bradley nuanced on fibre future

Regulatory

BT’s USC offer meets resistance [p16]

  • Cost recovery through Ofcom could be a sticking point

Suppliers

BT signs new contract with Ciena [p18]

  • Latest contract builds on previous deals and trials
  • Table: People movement highlights

CONSUMER/EE

5G

EE highlights 5G testing as Huawei relationship blossoms [p23]

  • Huawei trials a step forward, although healthy scepticism over 5G hype remains
  • Facebook backs away from Premier League swoop

Pricing and tariffs

BT agrees line rental price slash [p24]

  • One million BT accounts could see a change
  • BT and Ofcom also to push for dual-play promotion

Devices

Google lets EE down with Pixel 2 XL glitches [p27]

  • Table: EE on the LTE-A catwalk: networks and devices
  • Reputation shot?
  • Pixelated future
  • Cat-16 let loose in Netgear
  • YouView moving forward with wider platform, targeted ads, more analytics

BUSINESS AND PUBLIC SECTOR

Partners

BT adds AudioCodes SBCs to support SIP trunking [p31]

  • Virtually there?

GLOBAL SERVICES

Cloud services

BT strengthens cloud links with AWS [p33]

  • Key elements of the BT/AWS collaboration
  • More to come, promises Burger, as cloud strategy accelerates

Dynamic Network Services

Cisco and BT flag latest DNS development [p36]

  • BT wins wholesale contract extension with Sky in Ireland
  • Cisco burrows deeply into BT networks
  • BT strives to be a one-stop shop

BT International: Europe

BT leases dark fibre in Holland [p38]

Security

BT sets up SOC in Germany [p39

  • Why the wait?
  • Security enhancements…
  • …security leader

WHOLESALE & VENTURES

Partners

BT, Avaya bring personalised cloud to mid-market firms [p42]

  • Add-ons

OPENREACH

Fibre consultation

Openreach demands full-blooded fibre conviction [p46]

Openreach consults on ‘grey’ fibre [p48]

Networks

Openreach co-produces West End gigabit show [p49]

  • Howdy, partner

FURTHER READING

INDEX

Index

A

Accenture 20
Acuitas Digital Alliance 21
ADVA Optical Networking 48
Alcatel-Lucent 19
Alphabet
Google
Google Pixel 27, 28
Amazon 8, 33, 34
Amazon Web Services 8, 33
Apple 10, 28
iPhone 28
Arbor Networks 40
AT&T 31
AudioCodes 31
Avaya, Inc. 42, 43

B

BAE 20
BAE Systems 20
Detica 20
BG Group 20
British American Tobacco 12
Broadband Forum 23
Broadband Stakeholder Group 14
BroadSoft 31
BT Group 6, 7, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 18, 19, 20, 21, 23, 24, 29
BT Business & Public Sector 11, 21, 31
BT Cloud Voice 31
– – BT Ireland 37
BT Consumer 6, 7, 10, 11, 20, 24, 25, 29, 46
BT Basic 25
– – BT Cloud 31, 34
– – BT Infinity 12, 29
– – Plusnet 21
BT Global Services 6, 7, 8, 11, 20, 21, 32, 33, 34, 36, 37, 39
BT Assure 40
– – BT Conferencing 21
– – BT Connect 36
– – BT Germany 33
– – BT International 33, 38
– – BT Italia 12, 20
– – BT Nordics 38
– – BT Security 8, 20, 39, 40
– – Spain 34
– – Virtual Private Network 19
BT Pension Scheme
Crown Guarantee 13
BT Retail 20
– BT Technology, Service and Operations 19
21CN 19
– – Adastral Park 23, 29
– – Azure 34
– – Infinity Lab 12
BT Wholesale & Ventures 11, 31, 42, 43
IP Exchange 6
Directors
du Plessis, Jan 6, 11, 12
EE 6, 7, 10, 11, 20, 21, 22, 23, 25, 27, 28, 29
Emergency Services Network 10
Executives
Allera, Marc 7, 10
– – Alvarez, Luis 34
– – Blight, Meg 20
– – Burger, Bas 7, 8, 20, 34
– – Cameron, Richard 20
– – Doyle, Sian 21
– – Ducke, Thomas 20
– – Fearn, Ulrica 20
– – Frangos, Jean-Marc 20
– – Hanif, Mansoor 27
– – Hicks, Lydia 20
– – Hischer, Stefan 33
– – Jungling, Torsten 39
– – Lowth, Simon 6, 10, 20
– – McRae, Neil 18, 23
– – Mears, Kim 49
– – Orme, Simon 42
– – Palchik, Arina 20
– – Patterson, Gavin 6, 10, 23
– – Selley, Clive 7
– – Shah, Rajiv 20
– – Sherry, Keith 21
– – Smith, Martin 20
– – Sutton, Neil 34
– – Vaughan, Abigail 20
– – Wallington, Darren 48
– – Watson, Howard 13
Openreach 6, 7, 11, 13, 14, 15, 19, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50

C

Canonical 27
CBRE 21
CBRE Group 21
Ciena 18, 19, 48
Cisco Systems, Inc. 8, 19, 34, 36, 37, 39, 40
CityFibre 47
Comcast 21
Communications Workers Union 10

D

Darktrace 39
Dell EMC 19
Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS, UK)
Bradley, Karen 15
Deutsche Telekom 13, 34, 40
T-Systems 34
Diageo 20
Digital Britain 14

E

Eir 37
Equinix 34
Ericsson 25
European Union 10, 11

F

Facebook 13, 24, 27
Football Association
Premier League 12, 24

G

Google 27, 28

H

Hewlett Packard Enterprise 34, 39
High Court 16
Home Builders Federation 50
House of Commons
Public Accounts Committee 10
HP Inc 34, 39
Huawei Technologies 12, 19, 23

I

Intel 13, 39
Intel Security 39, 40
International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC)
Broadband World Forum 14
International Paralympic Committee (IPC)
Paralympic Games 21
Interxion 34

J

Juniper Networks 19, 40

K

KPMG 40

L

LG 28
Liberty Global 29
Virgin Media 11, 14, 20, 29, 47
Lime Microsystems 27
LinkedIn 21

M

Microsoft 34

N

Nokia 13, 27, 37
Nuage Networks 19, 37
Nomura 28
Npower 29

O

Ofcom 14, 15, 16, 23, 24, 25, 46, 50
Light User Scheme
BT Basic 25
USO 16
Olympic Games
London 2012 21
Oracle 34
Orange 21, 40

R

Relined 38
Rio Tinto 12
Rogers Communications 21

S

Salesforce 34
Samsung 27, 28
SAP AG 34
SATO Global Solutions 21
Siemens 19
Sony 28
Symantec 40

T

TalkTalk Telecom Group 16
TechHub 12
Technology
2G 28
– Broadband 13, 14, 16, 23, 24, 25, 29, 37, 46, 48, 49, 50
– Ethernet 19, 43
– Fibre 6, 11, 14, 15, 18, 29, 37, 38, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50
Fibre-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) 11, 14, 15, 49
Fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) 46, 47, 49, 50
– G.fast 14, 15
– ICT 21
– IN 19
– Internet of Things 21
– IP 6, 13, 19, 27, 31, 43
– LLU 48
– LTE 23, 28
– mmWave 25
– MPLS 8
– R&D 40
– SIP 27, 31
– TDM 31
– Unified Communications 31, 43
– VDSL 16
– VoIP 31
– VPN 19
– Wi-Fi 25, 28
Telecom Infra Project 13, 27
Telefónica 13
Teligent 19
ThreatConnect 39

U

University of Cambridge 12

V

Vodafone 13, 37, 47, 50
SIRO 37
– UK 47
VoltServer 25

Y

YouView 29

Z

Zscaler 40

About

About BTwatch

Report: #290
Published: November 2017
Next report: December 2017/January 2018
For more information visit: BTwatch