T-Mobile and Cisco Show Why a Distributed Nationwide Cloud Native 5G Core Gateway is Sexy
by Ron Westfall | December 21, 2022

The News: T-Mobile announced it teamed up with Cisco to launch its distributed nationwide cloud native converged core gateway. T-Mobile has moved all its 5G and 4G traffic to the new cloud native core gateway, which the company touts swiftly boosted performance for customers with more than a 10% improvement in both speed and latency. Read the T-Mobile Press Release here.

T-Mobile and Cisco Show Why a Distributed Nationwide Cloud Native 5G Core Gateway is Sexy

Analyst Take: T-Mobile and Cisco are collaborating to deliver a distributed cloud native core gateway across T-Mobile’s nationwide network. As a result, T-Mobile is transitioning all its 5G and 4G traffic to the new converged core, boosting performance for customers with faster speeds, lowering latency, and improving responsiveness.

From my view, the key takeaway is that T-Mobile is using the new core gateway to swiftly test and accelerate time to market for new 5G and IoT applications at scale, including network slicing and Voice over New Radio (VoNR). The automated converged core gateway streamlines operations, enabling T-Mobile to shift resources with increased agility to help drive new services such as 5G Home Internet.

As a result, T-Mobile can streamline network functions across cloud, edge, and data center environments to improve overall operational lifecycle management. Through broader distribution, I see the new core supporting more advanced capabilities, such as edge computing, to better manage the scaling of emerging 5G-IoT applications and capabilities.

I see the T-Mobile deal as a peacock feather in Cisco’s sales and marketing cap, especially in relation to major 5G core rivals such as Ericsson, Nokia, and Samsung, as well as Microsoft Azure, Mavenir, HPE, and Casa Systems. The collaboration provides Cisco the ecosystem-wide soapbox to promote the benefits of its automated converged core architecture bases the company’s cloud native control plane. This includes optimization with Kubernetes orchestrated containers on bare metal that are designed to liberate over 20% of the CPU cores.

The solution uses a synthesis of Cisco networking solutions such as the Cisco 8K Series routers, Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS), Cisco Nexus 9K Series Switches with Cisco Network Services Orchestrator for full stack automation, and 5G & 4G packet core gateways. For example, I see T-Mobile applying the full stack automation capabilities to move past the challenges of administering separate, fragmented stacks and speed up the standardization of its infrastructure.

As such, I anticipate Cisco’s solution can further bolster T-Mobile’s ability to innovate across its cloud-based packet core, including business-to-service connections as T-Mobile for Business ramps up, further embedding automation of operations, and strengthening network-wide security.

Key Takeaways: T-Mobile and Cisco Collaborate on Cloud Native 5G Core Gateway Innovation

The Cisco solution can also further augment T-Mobile’s ability to deploy an open and converged access network which can allow connections to move between different access types, as well as improve quality of experience, network-wide cost management, and traffic optimization throughout a single 5G architecture. We are also encouraged by T-Mobile’s cloud native 5G Core Gateway debut, since it immediately boosts performance for both 5G and 4G customers. The move follows on T-Mobile’s Q3 2022 attainment of its highest ever postpaid account net additions as well as postpaid and broadband growth that continue to outflank Verizon and AT&T paving the way for T-Mobile to raise guidance for the third time in 2022. Factor in what I see as T-Mobile for Business’s substantial revenue upside and the company is nicely positioned to meet new competitive challenges, as well as sufficiently handle any macroeconomic uncertainties on the horizon.

Disclosure: Futurum Research is a research and advisory firm that engages or has engaged in research, analysis, and advisory services with many technology companies, including those mentioned in this article. The author does not hold any equity positions with any company mentioned in this article.

Analysis and opinions expressed herein are specific to the analyst individually and data and other information that might have been provided for validation, not those of Futurum Research as a whole.

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About the Author

Ron is an experienced research expert and analyst, with over 20 years of experience in the digital and IT transformation markets. He is a recognized authority at tracking the evolution of and identifying the key disruptive trends within the service enablement ecosystem, including software and services, infrastructure, 5G/IoT, AI/analytics, security, cloud computing, revenue management, and regulatory issues. Read Full Bio.