How NSPs Prepare to Thrive in the 5G Era

NSPs_Prepare
In my last blog in this series, we looked at the present state of 5G. Although it’s still early and it’s impossible to fully comprehend the potential impact of 5G use cases that haven’t been built yet, opportunities to monetize 5G with little additional investment are out there for network service providers (NSPs) who know where to look.

Now, it’s time to look toward the future. Anyone who’s been paying attention knows that 5G technology will be revolutionary across many industry use cases, but I’m not sure everyone understands just how revolutionary, and how quickly it will go down. According to Gartner®, “While 10% of CSPs in 2020 provided commercializable 5G services, which could achieve multiregional availability, this number will increase to 60% by 2024”.[i]

With so many recognizing the value of 5G and acting to capitalize on it, NSPs that fail to prepare for future 5G opportunities today are doing themselves and their enterprise customers a serious disservice. Preparing for a 5G future may seem daunting but working with a trusted interconnection partner like Equinix can help make it easier.

5G is so challenging for NSPs and their customers because it is so revolutionary. Mobile radio networks were built with consumer use cases in mind, which means the traffic from those networks is generally dumped straight to the internet. 5G is the first generation of wireless technology capable of supporting enterprise-class business applications, which means it’s also forcing many NSPs to consider alternatives to the public internet to support those applications.

User plane function breakout helps put traffic near the app

In my last article, I mentioned that one of the key steps mobile network operators (MNOs) could take to enable 5G monetization in the short term would be to bypass the public internet by enabling user traffic functions in the data center. This is certainly a step in the right direction, but to prepare themselves for future 5G and multicloud opportunities, they must go further by enabling user plane function (UPF) breakout.

The 5G opportunities of tomorrow will rely on wireless traffic residing as close as possible to business applications, to reduce the distance data must travel and keep latency as low as possible. This is a similar challenge to the one NSPs faced in the past with their wireline networks. To address that challenge, they typically deployed virtual network functions (VNFs) on their own equipment. This helped them get the network capabilities they needed, when and where they needed them, but it also required them to buy colocation capacity and figure out how to interconnect their VNFs with the rest of their digital infrastructure.


Instead, Equinix customers have the option to do UPF breakout with Equinix Metal®, our automated bare-metal-as-a-service offering, or Network Edge virtual network services on Platform Equinix®. Both options provide a simple, cost-effective way to get the edge infrastructure needed to support 5G business applications. Since both offerings are integrated with Equinix Fabric™, they allow NSPs to create secure software-defined interconnection with a rich ecosystem of partners. This streamlines the process of setting up hybrid deployments.

Working with Equinix can help make UPF breakout less daunting. Instead of investing massive amounts of money to create 5G-ready infrastructure everywhere they need it, they can take advantage of more than 235 Equinix International Business Exchange™ (IBX®) data centers spread across 65 metros in 27 countries on five continents. This allows them to shift from a potentially debilitating up-front CAPEX investment to an OPEX investment spread over time, making the economics around 5G infrastructure much more manageable.

Support MEC with a wide array of partners

Multiaccess edge compute (MEC) will play a key role in enabling advanced 5G use cases, but first enterprises need a digital infrastructure capable of supporting it. This gets more complicated when they need to modernize their infrastructure while maintaining existing application-level partnerships. To put it simply, NSPs and their enterprise customers need an infrastructure provider that can not only partner with them, but also partner with their partners.

With Equinix Metal, organizations can deploy the physical infrastructure they need to support MEC at software speed, while also supporting capabilities from a diverse array of partners. For instance, Equinix Metal provides support for Google Anthos, Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) Anywhere and Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (EKS) Anywhere. These are just a few examples of how Equinix interconnection offerings make it easier to collaborate with leading cloud providers to deploy MEC-driven applications.

Provision reliable network slicing in a matter of minutes

Network slicing is another important 5G capability that can help NSPs differentiate their offerings and unlock new business opportunities. On the surface, it sounds simple: slicing up network traffic into different classes of service, so that the most important traffic is optimized for factors such as high throughput, low latency and security. However, NSPs won’t always know exactly what slices their customers will want to send or where they’ll want to send them, making network slice mapping a serious challenge.

Preparing for a 5G future may seem daunting but working with a trusted interconnection partner like Equinix can help make it easier.”
Equinix Fabric offers a quicker, more cost-effective way to map network slices, with no need for cross connects to be set on the fly. With software-defined interconnection, the counterparty that receives the network slice essentially becomes an automated function that NSPs can easily control. This means NSPs can provision network slicing in a matter of minutes, not days, even when they don’t know who the counterparty is going to be. Service automation enabled by Equinix Fabric can be a critical element of an NSP’s multidomain orchestration architecture.

5G use case: Reimagining the live event experience

As part of the MEF 3.0 Proof of Concept showcase, Equinix partnered with Spectrum Enterprise, Adva, and Juniper Networks to create a proof of concept (PoC) for a differentiated live event experience. The PoC showed how event promoters such as minor league sports teams could ingest multiple video feeds into an AI/ML-driven GPU farm that lives in an Equinix facility, and then process those feeds to present fans with custom content on demand.

With the help of network slicing and high-performance MEC, fans can build their own unique experience of the event, looking at different camera angles or following a particular player throughout the game. Event promoters can offer this personalized experience even without access to the on-site data centers that are more common in major league sports venues.

DISH taps Equinix for digital infrastructure services in support of 5G rollout

As DISH looks to build out the first nationwide 5G network in the U.S., they will partner with Equinix to gain access to critical digital infrastructure services in our IBX data centers. This is a great example of how Equinix is equipped to help its NSP partners access the modern digital infrastructure needed to capitalize on 5G—today and into the future.

DISH is taking the lead in delivering on the promise of 5G in the U.S., and our partnership with Equinix will enable us to secure critical interconnections for a nationwide 5G network. With proximity to large population centers, as well as network and cloud density, Equinix is the right partner to connect our cloud-native 5G network.”

- Jeff McSchooler, DISH executive vice president of wireless network operations

Spotlight

Atompod

Here at Atompod/ITGenuity, we believe in the Information Technology Lifecycle: a single-source for IT Consultation > Telecommunications > Project Design > Technical Support Services. From the moment you build your store, your office or your data center - we help you make the right choices for networking, telecom, media and security. Our field engineers and technicians rollout nationwide and make your plans a reality. From there, we provide technical support and maintenance for the lifetime of your systems.

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The year of the pandemic – that is how many of us will remember 2020 for generations to come. Challenging circumstances brought by the sudden and devastating spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) has made us witness the world making quick changes to remote working, businesses struggling to survive, the distress of social distancing rules, the emotional rollercoaster for people isolating, an overall crisis for health systems and the economy of countries, no matter where you were in the world. When reflecting on what it has meant so far, however, we must realise that it’s not all doom and gloom. As Albert Einstein once said, “in the midst of every crisis lied a great opportunity”. The crisis has prompted companies to reinvent and accelerate digital plans, to adopt new technologies and sales models in order to adapt and survive – and for Managed Service Providers (MSPs) to step up to support businesses and employees in every way possible. 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Article | July 19, 2023

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Cartesi creates Linux infrastructure for blockchain DApps

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DApps (sometimes called Dapps) are from the blockchain universe and so, logically, the apps part stands for application (obviously) and the D part stands for decentralised (only obvious once you know that we’re talking distributed immutable language here). According to the guides section at blockgeeks, DApps are open source in terms of code base, incentivised (in terms of who validates it) and essentially decentralised so that all records of the application’s operation must be stored on a public and decentralised blockchain to avoid pitfalls of centralisation. So then, Cartesi is a DApp infrastructure that runs an operating system (OS) on top of blockchains. The company has now launched a more complete ‘platform-level’ offering, which is described as a layer-2 solution

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Article | June 2, 2021

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Spotlight

Atompod

Here at Atompod/ITGenuity, we believe in the Information Technology Lifecycle: a single-source for IT Consultation > Telecommunications > Project Design > Technical Support Services. From the moment you build your store, your office or your data center - we help you make the right choices for networking, telecom, media and security. Our field engineers and technicians rollout nationwide and make your plans a reality. From there, we provide technical support and maintenance for the lifetime of your systems.

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Legrand | January 15, 2024

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dxFeed Launches Market Data IaaS Project for Tradu, Assumes Infrastructure and Data Provision Responsibilities

PR Newswire | January 25, 2024

dxFeed, a global leader in data solutions and index management for the financial industry, announces the launch of an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) project for Tradu, an advanced multi-asset trading platform catering to active traders and investors. In this venture, dxFeed manages the crucial aspects of infrastructure and data provision for Tradu. As an award-winning IaaS provider (the Best Infrastructure Provider by the Sell-Side Technology Awards 2023), dxFeed is poised to address all technical challenges related to market data delivery to hundreds of thousands of end users, allowing Tradu to focus on its core business objectives. Users worldwide can seamlessly connect to Tradu's platform, receiving authorization tokens for access to high-quality market data from the EU, US, Hong Kong, and Australian Exchanges. This approach eliminates the complexities and bottlenecks associated with building, maintaining, and scaling the infrastructure required for such extensive global data access. dxFeed's scalable low latency infrastructure ensures the delivery of consolidated and top-notch market data from diverse sources to the clients located in Asia, Americas and Europe. With the ability to rapidly reconfigure and accommodate the growing performance demands, dxFeed is equipped to serve hundreds of thousands of concurrent clients, with the potential to scale the solution even further in order to meet the constantly growing demand, at the same time providing a seamless and reliable experience. One of the highlights of this collaboration is the introduction of brand-new data feed services exclusively for Tradu's Stocks platform. This proprietary solution enhances Tradu's offerings and demonstrates dxFeed's commitment to delivering tailored and innovative solutions. Tradu also benefits from dxFeed's Stocks Radar—a comprehensive technical and fundamental market analysis solution. This Software as a Service (SaaS) seamlessly integrates with infrastructure, offering added value to traders and investors by simplifying complex analytical tasks. Moreover, Tradu leverages the advantages of dxFeed's composite feed (the winner at The Technical Analyst Awards). This accolade reinforces dxFeed's commitment to delivering excellence in data provision, further solidifying Tradu's position as a global leader in online foreign exchange. "When we were thinking of our new sophisticated multi-asset trading platform for the active trader and investors we met with the necessity of expanding instrument and user numbers. We realized we needed a highly competent, professional team to deploy the infrastructure, taking into account the peculiarities of our processes and services," said Brendan Callan, CEO of Tradu. "On the one hand, it allows our clients to receive quality consolidating data from multiple sources. On the other hand, as a leading global provider of online foreign exchange, we can dispose of dxFeed's geo-scalable infrastructure and perform rapid reconfiguration to meet growing performance demands to provide data to hundreds of thousands of our clients around the globe." "The range of businesses finding the Market Data IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) model appealing continues to expand. This approach is gaining traction among various enterprises, from agile startups seeking rapid development to established, prominent brands acknowledging the strategic benefits of delegating market data infrastructure to specialized firms," said Oleg Solodukhin, CEO of dxFeed. By taking on the responsibilities of infrastructure and data provision, dxFeed empowers Tradu to focus on innovation and client satisfaction, setting the stage for a transformative journey in the dynamic world of financial trading. About dxFeed dxFeed is a leading market data and services provider and calculation agent for the capital markets industry. According to the WatersTechnology 2022 IMD & IRD awards honors, it's the "Most Innovative Market Data Project." dxFeed focuses primarily on delivering financial information and services to buy- and sell-side institutions in global markets, both traditional and crypto. That includes brokerages, prop traders, exchanges, individuals (traders, quants, and portfolio managers), and academia (educational institutions and researchers). Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Contact dxFeed: pr@dxfeed.com About Tradu Tradu is headquartered in London with offices around the world. The global Tradu team speaks more than two dozen languages and prides itself on its responsive and helpful client support. Stratos also operates FXCM, an FX and CFD platform founded in 1999. Stratos will continue to offer FXCM services alongside Tradu's multi-asset platform.

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