Cisco reveals deals with Airtel, Sprint, SoftBank, Google, KT and Rakuten

Cisco on Sunday made several announcements connecting its clients – Airtel, Sprint, SoftBank, Google, KT and Rakuten Mobile — at the Mobile World Congress (MWC 2019).
Cisco MWC 2018 Barcelona
Main team members of Cisco’s Service Provider Business include Jonathan Davidson, senior vice president and general manager, Service Provider Business, Cisco; Sumeet Arora, senior vice president and general manager, Service Provider Routing, Cisco; Scott Harrell, senior vice president and general manager, Enterprise Networking Business, Cisco; and Sanjay Kaul VP, Cisco Service Provider, APJ.

Cisco reported revenue of $12.4 billion (+7 percent) in the second quarter ended January 26, 2019.


Cisco is assisting Bharti Airtel to build India’s largest 5G-ready, IP-based automated network. Airtel aims to deliver enhanced subscriber experiences and offer high-speed mobile access for its smartphone customers.

Airtel’s IP-based network architecture will enable new functionality, including segment routing, traffic engineering and ethernet VPN that helps ensure seamless interoperability and the ability to leverage existing investments in its MPLS-TP network.

The automated IP network architecture will also give Airtel the ability to enhance its services to SMBs and enterprises, including key growth verticals such as Smart Cities, IoT, Utilities, Manufacturing, Agriculture and Retail.

Randeep Sekhon, CTO at Bharti Airtel, said: “Partnering with Cisco will help us transform our network architecture to enhance customer experiences while concurrently preparing for 5G and the era of connected things.”


Cisco is assisting SoftBank for the world’s first Segment Routing IPv6 (SRv6) deployment in Japan helping to reduce Capex and Opex.

Deploying SRv6 in a 5G mobile network simplifies network layers and integrates user plane functions from end-to-end with only IPv6 protocol, making things simple, controllable, and flexible.

“Converging 5G features into the end-to-end IPv6 layer with Segment Routing capabilities, is the key to embodying 5G in a simple, scalable architecture,” said Junichi Miyakawa, CTO for SoftBank.


Cisco is assisting KT for the launch of an automated 5G mobile network platform. Cisco is transitioning KT’s network architecture to better manage 5G traffic with advanced routing and automation software, intelligent analytics and machine learning.

The network includes a 5G routing backbone with Cisco Network Convergence System Router 6000 and ACI on Nexus 9000 switching platform at KT’s distributed data centers in Korea.

“KT is aligned with innovative technology partners like Cisco that can design and launch commercial 5G services focused on ultra-low latency as the world’s first CUPS architecture use,” said Su-Kil Lee, senior vice president of Network Research Technology Support Unit, KT.


Verizon is expanding its offerings to help enterprises accelerate their digital transformation to support 5G capabilities. Verizon’s Virtual Network Services will support 5G devices on Cisco’s software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) platform, said Shawn Hakl, senior vice president, Business Products, Verizon.


Cisco is working with Google Station to ensure sustainable public Wi-Fi across the globe.

“We chose Cisco for the Google Station initiative because they offer networking technology, finance capabilities and global reach to enable sustainable public Wi-Fi,” Mahesh Bhalerao, global director of partnerships, Next Billion Users at Google.


Cisco is assisting Sprint to deploy new routing technology to support Sprint’s backhaul network traffic as it prepares to launch mobile 5G service in nine cities in the first half of 2019.

“Cisco NCS routing technology powered by automation software running traffic over dark fiber offers us an ideal blend of innovative technology to support our LTE Advanced and 5G network,” said Greg O’Connor, vice president of Network Core and Access, Sprint.


Cisco announced details of its blueprint with Rakuten Mobile Network to launch the world’s first virtualized, cloud native mobile network in October 2019.

“Rakuten is taking a cutting-edge approach to mobile networking, modelling a new type of network that is software-powered and automated from top to bottom,” said Tareq Amin, chief technology officer, Rakuten Mobile Network.

Baburajan K