Agustín Argelich participates in “The future of networks” debate organized by NTT communications in Casa Batlló

On June 5th, The Japanese company NTT Communications—one of the largest telecommunications services providers in the world—organized its annual meeting of clients and friends in Barcelona’s Casa Batlló, a work of the
DSC_0072brilliant architect Antoni Gaudí and a gem of Catalonian modernism.

Among the discussions that took place during the meeting was one particular debate that involved three parties: the first was the directors at NTT and the second representatives of their principal clients, while an analyst and an independent consultant comprised the third. The theme of the discussion: the future of networks.

In an environment of maximum collaboration and cooperation, participants commented on the demands of clients and compared them to NTT’s innovative proposals regarding SDN (Software Defined Networks) and NFV (Network Functions Virtualization).

One of the challenges that drew particular attention was that of reviving telecommunications networks’ reputation of being of critical strategic value to C-level companies. These companies must implement more marketing strategies and programs to improve communications with senior management. In a way, telecommunications are the Central Nervous System to a company; an organization with a malfunctioning CNS—a malfunctioning network—cannot function, itself.

Both consultants and clients agreed that it is necessary for international operators to build long-term relationships of confidence with their network service providers, thus rendering respect for deadlines, anticipation of customer needs and transparent operations in the event of unforeseen inconvenience of the utmost importance.

DSC_0004All of the participants also agreed on the challenge of the “last mile” in international networks—of the international operator’s ability to access the client’s location from his or her own point of presence (PoP). The quality of the last mile depends on the local infrastructure and the terms of the agreements struck between international and local operators. NTT exposed the large number of interconnection agreements available today, as well as the advances that are continually being made in the field.

Vab Goel, founder and non-executive chairman of Virtela, an NTT company, explained the undeniable advantages of network functions virtualization (NFV) techniques that permit, for example, the implementation of virtual firewalls and the rapid break-out of delegations’ internet traffic to prevent such traffic from interfering with international MPLS flow.

Vab also commented on the major potential that SDN tools have to simplify management and network control; they offer users maximum configuration potential through a remote control. The user can, without communicating with the operator, directly increase or decrease bandwidth and alter security settings, as well as adjust a multitude of other parameters.

Assuming the technical viability and high availability as well as the continuous improvement of solutions, we can say that the success of international communications networks is sustained by the relationship of proactivity, compromise and confidence that the provider establishes with his or her clients.