BT has announced that as part of its Cloud of Clouds vision, it will deploy virtual Riverbed SteelHead application acceleration technology in the core of its global network.
The move is meant to provide enhanced application performance for customers accessing BT’s own cloud services as well as other Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) offerings. It is the first time Riverbed technology has been deployed into the core of a global telecoms network.
BT and Riverbed are embedding their services at global business hubs in Europe, North America and Asia in locations where BT has direct links to leading cloud providers and high-capacity internet breakout. The service will be available globally from early 2016 and accessible through BT’s IP Connect VPN from 198 countries and territories.
A series of pilots of the new capability showed substantial network performance improvements for SaaS applications such as the Microsoft Office 365 productivity suite.
In addition to application acceleration and network bandwidth optimization, customers using the new service also gain increased control over their applications, better end-to-end visibility into performance, and significantly improved reliability and security compared to delivering applications over the internet, BT said.
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Using Network Function Virtualisation (NFV), the new service will help customers take advantage of broader virtualised functions, such as application performance management and the management of high speed access to private and public clouds.
Keith Langridge, vice president, network services at BT Global Services, said: “Our Cloud of Clouds vision is rapidly coming to fruition. By including Riverbed-as-a-service in our offering, we address one of the key issues faced by our customers: the performance and reliability of applications hosted in the cloud. The new service builds on the direct network connectivity we already provide to major cloud providers by bringing better speed, performance and control to applications hosted with these cloud providers. This joint offering with Riverbed is a milestone on the journey to software-defined networks, and creates an additional differentiator against our competitors.”
Paul O’Farrell, Senior Vice President and General Manager, SteelHead and SteelFusion, at Riverbed said, “CIOs want to enjoy all of the benefits of the hybrid enterprise while solving the challenges of application delivery in this complex environment. Riverbed invented WAN optimization in 2004 with the launch of SteelHead and is today the leader in application performance infrastructure. The new integrated cloud-based solution from BT and Riverbed will provide unmatched application availability and acceleration as a service, offering an easier on-ramp to cloud computing via BT’s Cloud Connect service.”