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Brocade Will ‘Disrupt’ 5G Landscape With Virtualised EPC

Ben covers web and technology giants such as Google, Amazon, and Microsoft and their impact on the cloud computing industry, whilst also writing about data centre players and their increasing importance in Europe. He also covers future technologies such as drones, aerospace, science, and the effect of technology on the environment.

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Virtualised Evolved Packet Core readies Brocade for IoT and M2M network demands

Brocade has kickstarted its Mobile World Congress bonanza by unveiling a 5G mobile game plan that includes the company’s first virtualised Evolved Packet Core (vEPC).

Brocade hopes that that its new offering, designed to manage and optimise networks for IoT and M2M, will be enough to woo mobile network operators gearing up for the rollout of 5G. The company even claims it has positioned itself as a 5G disruptor.

Data avalanche

With the deluge of data created and moved by video and Internet services, along with the booming number of connections about to come online associated with Internet of Things services, Brocade said traditional mobile networks built on legacy architecture simply aren’t ready for 5G.

brocade“Brocade Virtual Core for Mobile (VCM) is the first-of-its-kind, fully virtualised Evolved Packet Core (vEPC) suite of products that supports network slicing with independent localisation and scaling of the control and user planes,” reads the product description for the vEPC.

“Specifically designed for virtual environments, the Brocade VCM transforms mobile networks by eliminating expensive and proprietary hardware devices, long upgrade cycles and over-provisioning.”

Speaking to TechWeekEurope, CTO of mobile networking Kevin Shatzkamer said: “Brocade is perfectly positioned to disrupt the mobile networking industry because we pioneered the network infrastructure transformation through our SDN and NFV technologies.”

Now, Shatzkamer claims that by designing virtual network functions specifically for the cloud, Brocade has overtaken legacy competitors who have “billions of dollars” locked up in physical and propriety devices in the network.

“Brocade is partnering with like-minded companies who embrace openness and share our view of delivering pre-integrated SDN and NFV solutions that produce quantifiable benefits,” said Shatzkamer. “Brocade’s pricing model is also disruptive. We’re breaking away from per device pricing to simple, consumption-based pricing models.”

The VCM can be deployed in days, according to Brocade, and depending on specific network and deployment requirements, the same software package can serve as a complete vEPC or a combination of mobility management entity (MME), home subscriber server (HSS), serving gateway (S-GW) and packet data network gateway (P-GW).

“Today’s announcements solidly plant Brocade in the business of delivering innovative networking solutions that help MNOs and MVNOs solve their most critical business and technology problems,” said Shatzkamer. “The combined offerings for vEPC, mobile edge computing and network visibility provide a future-proof technology foundation well in advance of 5G availability which will help MNOs accelerate new revenue streams today.”

The deployment model of the Brocade VCM can be used to create network slices that are optimised for IoT traffic profiles to enable a mobile packet core-as-a-service offering for hosting MVNO, working with 3G through to 5G.

Brocade reported its first quarter results this week, with revenue down two percent quarter-over-quarter at $574 million (£401m).  The company’s was up one percent year-over-year at $134 million (394m), helped by stronger switch sales but offset by weaker sales of its routers.

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