T-Mobile announced Wednesday that it has finished up the build-out of its nationwide virtual packet core by using Cisco's distributed SDN architecture.
T-Mobile claimed the deployment was the world's largest for virtual evolved packet core (vEPC), and it's a big win for Cisco's software-defined network (SDN) architecture.
Cisco will continue to reap the rewards of its relationship with T-Mobile as the two companies also announced that they had signed a five-year agreement to continue the build-out of T-Mobile's 5G packet core and policy suite. The deal spans both hardware and software services, which will be a boon to Cisco's bottom line as it transitions away from being a pure hardware provider. Cisco's competitors in the vEPC space include Nokia and Ericsson.
In a week rife with 5G related announcements, T-Mobile said its vEPC spans more than 70 million customers as it shifts from a centralized core architecture to distributed model across its footprint.
"This means we can further our 5G plans with more flexibility and agility to deliver new services to our customers—and with Sprint we’ll shift it all into overdrive," T-Mobile CTO Neville Ray said in a statement.
The virtualized and cloud-native based architecture will allow T-Mobile to launch new services with automated deployments at a quicker and larger rate than it was previously able to do. T-Mobile is prepping for next year's launch of its 5G services with its 600 MHz deployments.