What Is NaaS?
Defining an emerging technology like network-as-a-service (NaaS) can feel like a moving target, making it seem more like an overhyped catchall concept rather than an exciting and obtainable cloud model—which begs the question, what is NaaS really? Is it just an industry buzzword, or could it be a telecom gamechanger?
Let’s set the record straight on what NaaS is—and is not—who it’s for, and how Lumen is leveraging our technology to create an effortless NaaS experience that drives tangible results for our customers.
The “cloudification” of network services
There may not be an industry standard definition for NaaS, but I like to say that NaaS is the cloudification of networking services—achieved by simplifying the experience from start to finish, outsourcing onsite equipment and making compute and application services as easily and conveniently accessible as cloud services.
For Lumen, NaaS is more of an experience for all our products than it is a specific product, and we’re leveraging our underlying network infrastructure and decades of expertise to create that purely digital experience. With NaaS, you can do everything digitally, on-demand, and it takes effect in minutes or even seconds. You don’t have to wait.
Minutes instead of months
At the core of NaaS is its ease of use and flexibility; it changes the networking experience.
An enterprise’s success is based on its applications, so IT teams want to create an environment where those applications can run efficiently and meet their business needs. Today they’re creating that adaptable, agile application ecosystem through a combination of their own private data centers, the centralized cloud, third-party data centers and increasingly edge compute at the “edge” of the network. NaaS provides the same level of agility in networking that enterprises currently enjoy within their on-demand, cloud-centric app environments, enabling them to be more nimble.
Contributing to this flexibility is NaaS’s consumption-based billing model. Rather than paying for peak pricing during non-peak times, enterprises can pay for the bandwidth they need, when they need it, easily scaling up or down with fair and flexible pricing as business needs change.
Making things look easy is hard
Lumen NaaS is cloudifying telecom and networking, making services easy to buy, manage and use. To achieve truly agile networking, providers must invest in the required automation and dynamic capabilities from layer one and up the networking stack, which is difficult to do with decades-old infrastructure that was not built for on-demand consumption. For this reason, telecom historically has not been able to deliver an as-a-service model.
Fortunately, over the past several years, Lumen has envisioned and built a network designed for flexible subscription and dynamic point-and-click control. Since we operate one of the largest and most connected networks in the world and have decades of networking expertise, we are uniquely positioned to deliver a feature-rich connectivity model that’s truly easy to use, providing an exceptional experience.
NaaS in action
For example, we’re creating user-definable intervals for network consumption. So, if you want to turn up a new service, you have the instant gratification of utilizing bandwidth immediately—for an hour, forever or anything in between—and you can continue to adjust your capacity as your needs evolve.
Going forward, Lumen will continue to evolve our NaaS model to encompass more services, features and capabilities across an increasingly automated all-in-one platform. Within our NaaS vision, if you have a Lumen multi-use internet port, then you can turn up any service you need on the port you already have. Whether your enterprise has an immediate need for more bandwidth, or your data center wants access to Lumen internet, or you need protection from an active DDoS attack, your solution is just a few clicks away.
Learn more about how NaaS delivers high-performance, secure connectivity across locations on-demand.
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