Tech giants to focus on open-source 5G infrastructure
The two companies will work to drive open-source automation capabilities across the entire Dell infrastructure stack, from bare metal and network storage.
The Lowdown: They also will work with the open-source community to accelerate the development of Airship 2.0, which is due next year and will pull together best-of-breed open technologies for deploying and managing Kubernetes-based container environments and cloud software.
The Details: The next generation of wireless connectivity after 4G LTE, 5G promises significantly faster speeds and capacity. It’s been talked about for several years and will be crucial to the ongoing ramp-up of the Internet of Things (IoT) and the cloud, but it’s still a nascent technology. Like other carriers, AT&T is readying its environments for 5G, and the Airship project is the open-source iteration of its network-functions virtualization (NFV) platform.
Emerging 5G wireless networks will be key to enabling the development of dynamic and agile edge environments for mobile service providers, but the right infrastructure needs to be in place to make it work. That means infrastructure that’s software-defined, disaggregated, and open, enabling the automation of mobile service and analytics in a cloud-enabled world.
The Impact: The growing number of IoT devices and the massive amounts of data they’re generating is fueling the need for more compute, storage, network connectivity, and analytics capabilities at the edge, closer to where the devices live. Edge infrastructure can process and analyze much of that data were the data is created, reducing the amount that needs to be sent back to the cloud or to a central data center. 5G will bring faster speeds and more network capacity into the equation.
Background: In its 5G and cloud efforts, AT&T has partnered with the likes of software giant Microsoft and IBM (after its acquisition of Red Hat). With Dell, the focus will be on creating an open infrastructure for its AT&T Cloud that leverages the Airship open-source tools that can be used to automate the provisioning of the cloud infrastructure.
The Buzz: “This collaboration will not only enable us to accelerate the AT&T Network Cloud on the Dell Technologies infrastructure, but also further the broader community goal of making it as simple as possible for operators to deploy and manage open infrastructure in support of SDN and other workloads,” said Amy Wheelus, vice president of AT&T Network Cloud.
“Dell Technologies is working closely with AT&T to combine our joint telco industry best practices with decades of data center transformation experience to help service providers quickly roll out new breeds of experiential edge and 5G services,” said Kevin Shatzkamer, vice president of Dell EMC Service Provider Solutions.