BT Brings in HPE for Global LAN Services

Operator group BT have brought in HPE in an attempt to address the growing demand for IoT deployments and hybrid working.

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BT’s new managed local area networking (LAN) service will be underpinned by HPE’s Aruba Networking solutions. The service promises to overhaul enterprise customers’ in-building connectivity, enabling it to cope with anything that modern working methods can throw its way.

”It’s clear that legacy in-building networks can’t handle modern hybrid working and IoT devices, nevermind what comes next. That’s why we’re expanding customer choice of managed LAN solutions by partnering with HPE Aruba Networking. This will offer the visibility, flexibility and security customers need to deliver productive, trusted wired and wireless connectivity.”

Andrew Small, director of voice and digital work at BT’s Business Division

Aruba LAN comes with a cloud-native management console to help customers keep tabs on every device connected to the network. Delivering this whole thing as a single managed service allows for Aruba to offer the flexibility to scale capacity up or down as needed, and easily add new features, such as managed network security. It really is customer-focused, allowing them to get a deal that will really benefit them. 

The solution has the ability to work in a multi-vendor environment, which means enterprises don’t have to undertake a complete rip and replace of the LAN they already have. The first step of the deployment process is an audit of the customer’s existing LAN, and identifying what can be reused, and what can be replaced. This saves money for both BT and the customer.

After that, BT work on securing the network and devices, and providing the cloud-based management interfaces. As well as keeping tabs on the network itself, it can also provide and identify redundant devices taking up unnecessary power, and automate network and energy optimization. 

”Global customers that are building their connectivity strategies are focusing on modern enterprise networks that are secure, agile, responsive to business needs and simple to operate, while being powerful drivers of transformation.

HPE Aruba Networking is at the forefront of reinventing how customers and partners can consume or deliver business-outcome focused networking, and by integrating our AI, security, automation and Network-as-a-Service capabilities, our global managed LAN service with BT is an example of how the network is helping customers achieve their business objectives.”

Phill Mottram, EVP and General Manager, HPE Aruba Networking 

While this all sounds pretty much perfect, there are some signs within the wireless side of the enterprise LAN market that a correction may be in the horizon. 

In early June, there were figures published by research firm Dell’Oro that detail how enterprise WLAN revenues surged 48% in the first quarter of the year, reaching $2.7 billion. It was noted by the firm’s own research director Siân Morgan that the market hasn’t seen such huge and consistent revenue growth in 10 years. He also predicts revenues to reach a massive $10 billion this year. 

Before too many people get carried away with this information though, Dell’Oro did state that the growth in Q1 was likely driven by backlogged orders being filled, and that it’s only masking a decline in new orders.

IDC also published figures in June, putting global WLAN revenue at $2.8 billion in the first quarter, up 43.3% on last year. Similarly to Dell’Oro, IDC stated that growth was driven by the easing of component shortages and supply constraints, allowing suppliers to catch up with back orders. 

In the world of vendors, HPE Aruba was ranked second by Q1 marlet share at 16%, noting its revenue growing by 39.5%. Cisco is still the clear leader of this market though, with a market share of 47.1%, and impressive enterprise WLAN revenue growth of 62.7%. 

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