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Ahead of FTTP and 5G, BT picks Nokia to enhance core capacity

With the national full-fibre broadband roll-out in full swing and 5G expected to launch, BT is deploying new Nokia hardware at its network core to boost capacity for data-hungry services

BT has selected Nokia’s 7750 SR-14s service router platform to enhance converged core network capacity as it prepares for widespread full-fibre – or fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) – broadband adoption and the imminent launch of 5G mobile network services.

The SR platform will form the backbone of BT’s FTTP and 5G mobile transport network – which is currently seeing traffic growth of over 40% every 12 months, driven largely by video and gaming over high-speed fixed and mobile broadband services – by enabling BT to get ahead of this trend to some extent.

“BT’s FTTP footprint is growing on a daily basis, and we [EE] are launching 5G this year in the busiest parts of 16 of the UK’s busiest cities,” said BT Group CTIO, Howard Watson. “These technologies create an amazing customer experience, and drive people to watch more, play more and share more.

“We have to stay ahead of the massive traffic growth that this will bring, and Nokia is a key part of that, giving us the capacity and automation that we need.”

BT will be among the first national network operators in the world to use the SR-14s, which augments existing 7750 SR and 7950 XRS-based network, managed through Nokia’s Network Services Platform (NSP).

With the world’s first multi-terabit network processor silicon under the bonnet, Nokia claims the SR-s can deliver the highest 100 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) density available on the market today and is the first platform able to deliver terabit IP flows across both the expanding backbone and peering points.

It also incorporates packet intelligence and control capabilities designed to enable users to glean more insight into their network, with improved intelligence, visibility and security flowing from that.

Nokia’s 7750 SR-14s platform, based on our FP4 silicon, will offer BT’s network the enhanced capabilities and automation needed to address continuously mounting capacity demands as it moves towards 5G,” said Sri Reddy, co-president of IP/Optical Networks at Nokia.

“Our exclusive partnership will allow BT’s converged core network to grow, and move to a programmable, insight-driven network architecture, creating a platform for BT’s growth to continue as demand for its services in FTTP and 5G expands.”

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Belgium’s Proximus has also recently deployed SR-14s equipment within its live core network and is already carrying live customer traffic – forming part of its Terabit IP Transport and Aggregation Network, or Titan, service upgrade.

Patrick Delcoigne, director of network engineering and operations at Proximus, said: “Titan is laying the foundations of a hyper-scale network, propelling Proximus into the terabit era.

“The track record of Nokia and Proximus in IP network innovation is extending today, with our tandem becoming among the world’s pioneers in activating the biggest equipment ever deployed in a telecom operator network and so defining the new capacity reference standards.”

Read more on Network routing and switching

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