AT&T and Colt Technology Services revealed trial results of a standard application programming interface (API) infrastructure that lets software-defined networking (SDN) architectures from different network service providers interoperate. The test occurred between two networks in the United States and Europe, and the proof of concept reportedly revealed that users could reserve ports, order a point-to-point Ethernet service, flex the bandwidth up and down, and turn down the service in near real time.
AT&T reported that it successfully provisioned network services between the U.S. East Coast and various locations in Europe in the trial. “This allowed SDN-to-SDN control using a programmatic API-to-API interface between the separate SDN architectures, proving that SDN-managed services can be set up and run across multiple networks in just minutes,” the carrier said in a statement. “They can also be managed and flexed in near real time. This creates a template for providers to deploy new services in a matter of minutes over each other’s networks.”
Enterprise customers are the target audience here, as they increasingly consider more open, standardized, and software-centric networking services. Roman Pacewicz, senior vice president, offer management and service integration at AT&T Business Solutions, said that businesses looking to provide a seamless, connected environment for customers can benefit from a unified industry ecosystem that’s focused on interoperability.
The API trial integrated AT&T’s and Colt’s on-demand network capabilities, and the companies reported they expect these will drive further industry collaboration and standardization.
Rajiv Datta, chief technology officer at Colt, called the proof of concept “a key building block giving enterprises the power to provision scalable, flexible network services on-demand.”
“The API in our trial makes managing integrated SDNs accessible, agile, flexible, and easy to adopt,” Datta said. “As use cases and APIs continue to evolve, we’ll be able to add attributes, services and enhancements that will drive further innovation. This will be critical as SDN becomes increasingly important in our business climate.”
On the SDN and network functions virtualization (NFV) front, AT&T has proven itself a growingly assertive player with its AT&T Network Functions on Demand solution – now known as FlexWare. The company announced last month that it is offering a new device option, enhanced functionality and expanded availability of FlexWare. Business customers can reportedly set up multiple virtual network functions (VNFs), such as a router and a firewall, on a single FlexWare device and deploy them in different countries. FlexWare is also adding Palo Alto Networks’ next-generation security platform to its catalog of VNFs.
The deployment and expansion of FlexWare followed AT&T’s 2015 launch of its Network on Demand solution that offers internet access, virtual private networks, and Ethernet services.
Filed Under: Infrastructure