Lumen stacks VMware on its edge for private cloud

cloud network
(Bethany Drouin/Pixabay)

Lumen Technologies put its edge compute infrastructure to work, using it as the basis for a new Edge Private Cloud product which allows enterprises to run key workloads in a secure environment.

Edge Private Cloud is a managed Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) offering which layers VMware Cloud Foundation and software-defined data center technology on top of Lumen’s bare metal edge compute capabilities. It can be deployed on-premises, on Lumen’s edge nodes or in 2,200 third-party data centers across the globe.

Chris McReynolds, VP of cloud edge product management for Lumen, told Fierce the offer is targeted at larger enterprises and government customers with strict security and latency requirements.

“There’s just some really strong preference from software developers and certain enterprise companies to run VMware. And where we come in is a lot of those companies are wanting to get away from managing the hardware infrastructure and the virtualization environment. They want it up and running in a location that is the best execution venue for their applications,” he said.

“Where we see concentrations are those that are server-huggers so to speak…So, if you think finance, healthcare, definitely federal, if you think more regulated verticals, there’s more of a propensity to want private clouds than running those workloads in public clouds,” he added.

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McReynolds also noted private clouds tend to appeal to larger enterprises rather than small and medium businesses. Specifically, he pointed to enterprises with more than 10 locations in a state or market which are looking to centralize deployments of latency sensitive applications “into these edge nodes to add cost efficiency and also just speed to delivery efficiency.”

Lumen launched the bare metal edge infrastructure atop which its new private cloud offer sits in December 2020.

The executive said it currently has 44 edge nodes deployed in the U.S., allowing it to reach 97% of enterprises within 5 milliseconds of latency. It also has one node running in London with five more locations in Europe and six in Latin America set to come online by the end of 2021. He added it’s also working on investments in Asia which will “likely turn up the first half of ‘22” and will add additional nodes beyond that “as demand requires.”

McReynolds said the private cloud is just the first layer it’s planning to stack on top of its edge infrastructure. He noted it expects to launch a multi-tenant virtual machine offer as well as an edge orchestrator to help customers deploy and manage applications across cloud environments in Q1 2022.