CenturyLink's adaptive networks flourish during COVID-19 crisis

Mercy/CenturyLink
CenturyLink says its adaptive networks enable it to better serve its customers during the COVID-19 crisis. (CenturyLink)

CenturyLink's decision to build adaptive networks is paying off during the coronavirus pandemic. CenturyLink uses "adaptive networks" to describe its software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization-based networks. Laurinda Pang, CenturyLink’s president of international and global accounts management, cited her company's adaptive networks in a recent blog post.

RELATED: Colt CEO Grivner: SDN and employees shine in time of coronavirus pandemic

Service providers, including AT&T, Verizon, Orange and Colt Technology Services, that invested in software-defined networking prior to the coronavirus crisis have been more responsive than ones that are still using legacy or hybrid networks.

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"The impact of the global pandemic has made it clear to everyone how important the network truly is," Pang said. "In fact, the network was starting to see a lot of love in the weeks before this coronavirus crisis began."

Pang said that businesses want a flexible, self-learning foundation that allows them to move, add, change and delete network services on demand. 

"Fortunately, CenturyLink’s adaptive networking has all the characteristics you would expect from a good friend in a time of need," Pang said.

CenturyLink has deployed more than 80,000 software-controlled devices across its Ethernet, IP and MPLS infrastructure at the provider edge, programmable services backbone (PSB) infrastructure, and transport network.

For NFV, CenturyLink, which has started work on its fourth iteration of NFV, has virtualized customer premises equipment, route reflectors for infrastructure, firewalls, content delivery networks, SD-WAN, and analytics probes. 

RELATED: CenturyLink notches a large SD-WAN win that spans multiple continents

Pang also touted CenturyLink's SD-WAN services that are available across 100 countries as of the end of last year. CenturyLink is using SD-WAN solutions from Cisco/Viptela, Versa Networks and Cisco Meraki.

Pang said CenturyLink is able to give its business customers insight into their data flows as well as turn up or turn down bandwidth as needed. CentuyLink's global backbone has a capacity of more than 120 Tbps and it provides access to more than 2,200 clouds and private data center.

Pang also said that due to CenturyLink's cloud partnerships, it could set up cloud connections to the cloud in minutes instead of days or weeks.

"Our adaptive network hangs on your every word," Pang said. "I’ve seen first-hand how companies experience different digital journeys, so we provide the tools and capabilities that allow you to spin-up, tear down and optimize services as your needs evolve.

"And if you need more capacity, we can typically triple it within a short time horizon. We’re inspired by the challenges our customers provide.  Just tell us what you want."

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