Carriers can overcome the triple threat of video, mobility and cloud-based services by making the transition to a more distributed, converged IP edge architecture that utilizes advanced IP edge routers, according to a recent white paper by Infonetics Research.

“The Internet changed everything forever, and it certainly changed service provider networks,” said Michael Howard, Infonetics Research’s co-founder, principal analyst for carrier networks and author of the white paper. “The great migration from TDM to IP has been in motion for over a decade, and just as carriers are nearing completion of their IP packet networks, they’re faced with new challenges from video, mobility and the cloud that have the ability to overwhelm these networks.”

“Fortunately, a new IP edge is emerging, where multiple IP networks are consolidated into just a few – or preferably one – capable of addressing the scalability and performance requirements of today’s services, enabling operators to turn the triple challenge of video, mobility and cloud into opportunities.”

Infonetics chart
Other highlights of the report included:

  • The current IP edge comprises separate overlay networks for multiple services and is not up to the task of providing the capacity and service granularity today’s video and data services require.
  • The “new IP edge” is a consolidated multi-service delivery point for IP video, mobile and cloud services.
  • A number of service providers, including British Telecom, Telus, Portugal Telecom and Belgacom, are using the latest functions of IP edge routers to re-architect their networks, add new capabilities and innovate new services.

The white paper said video was the biggest threat to service provider networks today. Specifically:

  • The shift from traditional multicast broadcast IPTV service, where one stream is sent to all users, to the shift from traditional unicast broadcast video, where a separate stream is sent to each single user.
  • Over-the-top (OTT) video consumption.