AWS Integrated Private Wireless with Deutsche Telekom, KDDI, Orange, T-Mobile US, and Telefónica partners
In addition to Telco Network Builder, AWS today announced its Integrated Private Wireless that acts as an infrastructure bridge for network operators that want to offer a private network service tapping into AWS’ infrastructure to end users. This allows AWS to connect incoming customers interested in a private network platform with the #1 cloud service provider’s telecom partners.
“We are really just connecting the customer with the telco, then that relationship is between the two of them,” said Jan Hofmeyr,VP of Amazon EC2. Initial telecom partners include Deutsche Telekom, KDDI, Orange, T-Mobile US, and Telefónica. Enterprise customers shopping for private wireless services will be able to purchase an installation from one of those participating operators. “The relationship is directly between the customer and the telco,” Hofmeyr said, noting that the resulting private wireless network will then run atop the AWS cloud.
Hofmeyr said that AWS’ goal is to provide customers with an easy set of options that will allow them to deploy or operate a private network in a manner that meets their needs and abilities. “Right now this is their ask, [it’s] helping us make this onboarding easier, and that’s exactly what we’re focusing on. In the future, we’ll continue to listen to what their needs are and continue to support that,” Hofmeyr added.
This new private network offering is different from AWS’ Private 5G platform that it initially unveiled in late 2021, and has since updated. That platform integrates small cell radio units, AWS’ Outposts servers, a 5G core, and radio access network (RAN) software running on AWS-managed hardware. AWS also handles the spectrum management of this service.
AWS will act as the portal, but telcos will be the managed service providers for the network on behalf of those enterprises or smaller service providers, the company said. As with the telco network builder, AWS will provide a dashboard for monitoring performance and modifying it as needed.
“That’s one of the friction points we saw as we started looking at the private network space,” said Ishwar Parulkar, chief technologist for the telco industry at AWS, in an interview. “There are a lot of enterprise customers who really don’t care about all of this. They just want to be able to use the network and run some applications on top. That’s one of the primary values that we bring with this: lifting that undifferentiated work away from them and managing it in the cloud.”
For Amazon, telcos represent a prime business opportunity: as carriers build new networks with increasing reliance on software and cloud services, Amazon is positioning itself as a tech and cloud partner to help run those services better and more cheaply. It’s been interesting to watch how it has worked to build trust among a group of businesses that have at times been very wary of big tech and the threat of being reduced to “dumb pipes” as tech companies lean on their own architecture and technology advances to build faster and cheaper services that compete directly with what carriers have and plan to roll out. As one example, the company is clear to call these new products “offerings” and not services to make clear that it is not the managed service provider, the carriers’ role.
“We’ve been on this journey for a few years now in terms of really getting the cloud to run telco networks,” said Parulkar. “Our goal here is to make AWS the best place to host 5g networks for both public and private. And on that journey, we’ve been making steady progress.”
For carriers, they are now in a world where arguably communications is just another tech service, so many of them believe that running them with less costs and in more flexible ways will be the key to winning more business, introducing more services and getting better margins. Whether carriers want to wholesale work closer with Amazon, or with any of the cloud providers, for such services, will be the big question.
“There’s nothing like it;” AWS CEO announces Private 5G at AWS re-Invent 2021; Dish Network’s endorsement
AWS Telco Network Builder: managed service to deploy, run, and scale telco networks on AWS
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T-Mobile and AWS are working together to pair T-Mobile’s 5G Advanced Network Solutions portfolio with AWS cloud-based services and scalable, pre-integrated applications, so customers can more easily discover, customize and deploy 5G edge compute.
They will also collaborate on customizable, use case specific offerings as part of the new Integrated Private Wireless on AWS program. These offerings help businesses get the performance and applications they need for their unique use cases – for example, monitoring worker safety on remote industrial campuses, performing predictive maintenance on manufacturing equipment, or ensuring faster aircraft turnaround times at the airport.
“T-Mobile and AWS are coming together to do what industry-leading companies do best – make things easier for customers,” said Callie Field, President, T-Mobile Business Group. “Businesses need a combination of connectivity and compute that fits into their current infrastructure. With our flexible 5G network deployment options and AWS’s cloud compute capabilities, we can quickly provide customers a right-sized solution to make their applications – new and existing – perform like never before.”
“AWS and T-Mobile share a common desire to work backwards from customer feedback to deliver innovation,” said Adolfo Hernandez, Vice President, Telco Industry at AWS. “One of the biggest challenges in galvanizing industries and revenue for 5G services has been the lack of flexible 5G solutions that meet the compute and connectivity needs for customers. Together with T-Mobile’s innovative suite of 5G Advanced Network Solutions and our Integrated Private Wireless Program, we have the power to meet customers where they are.”
After years of industry excitement, 5G private network adoption has underwhelmed, but the potential is undeniably huge. The challenge has been the complexity and cost businesses face in unlocking that potential – requiring them to work across multiple vendors for compute, connectivity, applications, integration and more at a time of increased budget pressures. With some connectivity vendors insisting on a costly one-size-fits all approach to private networking – instead of a flexible set of private, hybrid and public networking options – it’s no wonder adoption has been slow to take off.
By working together, T-Mobile and AWS can help customers more easily discover, customize, and deploy 5G edge compute. Current AWS customers or businesses wanting AWS services can use the Integrated Private Wireless on AWS portal to explore customized solutions, browsing by industry or use case. Then they simply choose T-Mobile as their 5G provider. For U.S. businesses new to any advanced network or compute solution, T-Mobile will be able to work with them to set up a 5G public, hybrid or private network that’s already integrated with AWS’s customizable edge infrastructure and services.
For more information on T-Mobile’s 5G Advanced Network Solutions (5G ANS), head to https://www.t-mobile.com/business/solutions/networking/5G-advanced-solutions. Customers can also visit https://aws.amazon.com/telecom/integrated-private-wireless to learn more through the Integrated Private Wireless portal.