In recent months, there’s been a lot of buzz around the topic of Software-defined Networked (SDN), which, in short, allows admins to control networks of computers (like a fleet of Virtual Machines on,say, Amazon Web Services) “on the fly,” in order to manage where traffic is sent in this network. It has become a prettty strong topic since VMWare acquired SDN startup Nicira for around $1.2 Billion last July, signaling that SDNs were going to be a new “battleground” for tech companies, as The Register put it.
This week, Nuage Networks, an Alcatel Lucent venture, announced the launch of its own SDN, called Virtualized Services Platform (VSP), which “lays the foundation for an open and dynamically controlled datacenter network fabric to accelerate application programmability, facilitate unconstrained mobility, and maximize compute efficiency for cloud service providers, webscale operators & leading tech enterprises across the globe.”
Alcatel-Lucent is a company in flux these days, and this shows that they are not out of the fight yet. Jumping on this multi-billion dollar opportunity, Alcatel-Lucent may be able to regain its former glory as an innovator for network operators by evolving with the times. The product has already been test piloted by SFR as well as a few small-name cloud computing companies, and I expect we’ll be seeing a lot of strategic ventures and repositioning by Alcatel-Lucent in the future.