Future of the Internet – Cisco, service providers and Web-scalers

Cisco had exciting product and technology announcements today, and customers from web-scale and carrier environments, during a panel discussion shared their two cents about why these technologies are/will be relevant for them and their organisations.

VP and CTO of Cisco’s Service Provider business unit, Michael Beesley, commented about the panel, “It’s an interesting and dynamic market; we serve a broad range of customers. No two customers are alike, but they generally fit into similar buckets or sub-sections.

“Across that diversity of customers, there is a diversity of business models with regard to what piece of technology and how those customers would like to transact with us.

We saw on stage today, actual representations of that diversity.”

AT&T for example, have a white box strategy for some of their projects and some parts of their network, whereby they are willing and able to do system integration ie. work with ODM and hardware partners and engage with Cisco’s networking operating system to deploy the software across their Cisco and non-Cisco hardware.

With Facebook, Cisco is working on an Open Compute Project (OCP) system, a white box design, which uses the Silicon ONE network processor as the engine, along with required SDK software. Michael also added, “And then on top of that, you would inevitably see a multitude of network OS software, besides Cisco’s IOS XR7.”

With Microsoft, Cisco saw them wanting to take Cisco’s silicon layer and system layer, but use their own preferred network OS stack from SONiC.

“Here, we work with them to run SONIC on top of our systems; we provide hardware, and a thin layer of driver software upon which Microsoft deploys their SONiC network OS.

In 2016, Microsoft announced and open sourced a major innovation to operate and manage thousands of network devices using open source software, a.k.a Software for Open Networking in the Cloud (SONiC).

How are these partners/customers and Cisco, enabling enterprises’ IT environments, the hybrid cloud being just one that is increasing in popularity right now?

Michael Beesley shares the answer, in the video below.

The Cisco Silicon ONE architecture is anticipated to power the Internet for the future.

It will be the foundation for their routing portfolio for the next decade at least, supporting the service provider market, the Web-scale market, and the core of the enterprise,



(This journalist is a guest of Cisco’s to their “Future of the Internet” event in San Francisco).