Juniper Networks: Meeting the Demands of the Connected World
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Juniper Networks: Meeting the Demands of the Connected World

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Rami Rahim, CEO, Juniper NetworksRami Rahim, CEO The term “400G” is prevalent in today’s optical networking conversations as numerous deployments are ramping in the industry. However, with 40 and 100 Gigabit Ethernet so new, what is driving the need for 400 Gigabit Ethernet enterprise networks?

Being four times as fast as 100 Gigabit Ethernet, 400GbE offers an economically attractive price per port and better power efficiency. When the IEEE standard for the 400 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) was approved, 400GbE had been already garnering attention to some extent. As several big networking vendors announced their forays into 400GbE, Juniper Networks was already miles ahead with its plans to infuse 400GbE innovations in its routing and switching portfolio that includes the PTX IP transport series, QFX data center series, and its MX WAN series.

"Delivering new services at huge scale both in terms of capacity and connectivity – to humans and to ‘things’ – will take a massive toll on today’s networks"

With the sole mission to create innovative products and solutions that meet the growing demands of the connected world, Juniper Networks develops and markets networking products that include routers, switches, network management software, network security products, and software-defined networking technology. Solving the world’s most difficult problems in networking technology in the cloud era, Juniper is a company of innovators that believe “creating simplicity through engineering is the highest form of innovation.” The company removes the traditional constraints of networking to enable their customers and partners to deliver automated, scalable, and secure networks that connect the world.

Juniper considers the demand for 400 Gigabit Ethernet to be driven by a need for more cost-efficient packet transport to handle increasing bandwidth demands from video, to deal with the east-west traffic in data centers and inter-data center traffic, and to prepare for 5G. The company has announced a broad 400GbE refresh to its wide-area network, data center, and enterprise portfolio with leading routing and switching densities. The new technology will help service providers, cloud, and enterprise customers recalibrate network economics as they transition to 400GbE to lower cost-per-bit while keeping up with increasing bandwidth demands from emerging 5G, augmented and virtual reality, cloud, and 4K video production and distribution.

Meeting the Texas-Sized Expectations of Customers

As an industry leader in automated, scalable, and secure networks, Juniper was the vendor of choice for GVTC Communications, a growing provider of high-speed Internet, digital cable, TV, phone, and interactive security monitoring to residential and business customers in South Central Texas. To meet its Texan customers’ high expectations for Internet, GVTC conducted a search for an edge router with a higher port density and the same robust multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) edge feature set its services relied on. After a thorough comparison of leading aggregation routers, GVTC chose Juniper’s high-density ACX5048 universal access router with its robust MPLS feature set, cost-effective metro Ethernet access and aggregation, and capacity up to 40GbE.

Success for our customers, whether they be the enterprise or the service providers, requires that we package our solutions, our technology with very robust services

Juniper Networks’ ACX5000 line of universal access routers proved to be the ideal solution and was built to deliver 1GbE, 10GbE, and 40GbE capacity. The ACX series routers provide Carrier Ethernet 2.0 services and have robust support for VPLS, IP, and IP VPN services. GVTC’s swap operation of its existing routers with the ACX series devices was done successfully. Inspired by Juniper’s ability to deliver a proven solution immediately, GVTC chose Juniper’s MX104 3D universal edge router to overcome the challenges of IPv4 address depletion. The MX104— Juniper’s modular, highly redundant, and full-featured router designed for space and power-constrained facilities—brings carrier-grade network address translation capability into GVTC’s network, allowing small pools of public addresses to be shared among its many end sites.

Blazing the Path to AI

In their quest to further enhance customers’ journey to AI for IT, Juniper Networks announced a cloud-delivered version of its SD-WAN solution, that pairs the simplicity of a cloud-delivered model with central orchestration of network infrastructure, delivering all of the advanced benefits of automated networking, security, analytics and AI for IT. When Juniper Networks acquired artificial intelligence-powered networking startup Mist Systems they had one goal in mind - to leverage Mist’s technology to boost enterprise sales with an AI-driven end-to-end approach. Mist has built the world’s first AI-driven wireless platform, which makes Wi-Fi more predictable, reliable and measurable. In addition to developing Marvis, the networking industry’s only AI-driven virtual assistant, to using patented virtual Bluetooth LE technology in conjunction with Wi-Fi and IoT, Mist is quickly becoming the WLAN standard for enterprise customers across numerous industries.

The acquisition of Mist was to expand Juniper’s presence in the rapidly growing cloud-managed segment of the wireless networking market. As two of the few companies that can serve enterprises end-to-end, they were blazing the path to AI for IT in this era of digital transformation. While Mist commenced by bringing AI-driven operations to WLAN, Juniper and Mist together would leverage this AI-driven approach across the IT stack.

With the launch of SD-WAN combined with the recent Mist Systems acquisition, Juniper is making industry-leading strides in their bid to make SDN and AI for IT a reality for companies of all sizes. This scalable, open, and future-ready solution offers customers the simplicity of a cloud-delivered service with the power of software-defined networking and security.
Once a laser-focused Tier 1 service provider specialist with a hardware edge, Juniper is now touting its open source and cloud capabilities while less than half its revenues derive from traditional telcos and cable operators. Selling to these enterprise customers implies that Juniper needs to line up well with how those businesses source and buy technology.
“You have almost an equal number of enterprises that want more of a turnkey solution from service providers and those that actually want to procure technology directly from the technology vendors,” says Rami Rahim, CEO of Juniper Networks. “In all cases, one thing that we have recognized is that success for our customers, whether they be the enterprise or the service providers, requires that we package our solutions, our technology with very robust services.”

Because Juniper works with enterprises, cloud service providers, and Tier 1 telcos, the company can work around technology deployment challenges faster. As an example, one of Juniper’s clients was a large Tier 1 carrier that sought to deploy a service and wanted the underpinning of that service to be virtualized and hosted in the cloud, instead of a traditional appliance-based approach. “Rather than procuring the building blocks, compute, storage, networking, orchestration, the virtual network functions (VNFs) themselves, they came to us,” says Rahim. “And , after we showed them the capabilities that we have, they essentially gave us the entire project, soup-to-nuts.” Juniper proceeded to build, operate, and transfer a complete stack from compute, storage, and networking to the orchestration and management, up to VNFs that are either developed by them or procured from a third party. “The important thing in all of this is we are packaging it. We’re doing the solution development, we’re doing the testing - and once it works, we’re handing it over to them,” says Rahim.

Juniper’s SD-WAN as a service easily connects and manages the full suite of Juniper’s branch and WAN solutions, making the benefits of SDN accessible to any enterprise. This offering provides customers a new delivery model for Juniper’s feature-rich WAN solution and includes a suite of new capabilities to support secure automation throughout the enterprise branch service deployment lifecycle. The capabilities include unprecedented SD-WAN flexibility, centrally managed branch LAN and WAN, managed security, integration with Mist Systems, flexibility to adapt and evolve, and Juniper’s financial services program. Juniper’s cloud-based SD-WAN solution is the most scalable offering on the market currently. This allowed Juniper’s Contrail Service Orchestration, a key component of their Contrail SD-WAN solution, to give enterprises a simple way to manage and secure not just the WAN infrastructure, but also branch LAN and Wi-Fi networks normally deployed alongside it.

With 5G on the horizon, Juniper is laying the groundwork with its subject matter experts offering guidance at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on how to immediately start implementing the right foundational architecture to reap the benefits of new business opportunities created by 5G, IoT, and the cloud. “Beyond the inevitable hype around all new technologies, 5G is often heralded as the future savior of mobile communications – the technology that will enable users to do so much more than they can today,” says Rahim. “However , delivering new services at huge scale both in terms of capacity and connectivity – to humans and to ‘things’ – will take a massive toll on today’s networks. To prepare for this 5G-led explosion of bandwidth and devices, providers will need to transform their infrastructure, operations and service delivery to capitalize on the opportunities. For this, service providers require a secure, automated and cloud-native architecture capable of delivering diverse services in a cost-effective and agile way.”

In anticipation of the next generation of mobile technology, Juniper has virtualized its current routing and security products to act as VNFs, with the promise of more virtualized capabilities in the near future. The combination of investments that Juniper made in its go-to-market scheme, new products that they are bringing to market and the acquisition of Mist Systems, positions the company to capitalize on the opportunities that 5G would bring.
- Lester D’Souza
    August 09, 2019