Virtual Network Operators

Kevin Werbach has an interesting piece on how AT&T is hollowing itself out in an attempt to become what Kevin sees as the first 21st century phone company (telco ?), one that virtualizes and outsources everything.

Well Vanco has been a global virtual network operator since 1988. Vanco doesn’t own a network of it’s own, they effectively outsource the running of the network to whichever providor is the cheapest and provide a management wrap.

Vanco has to built some pretty good relationships to be able to deliver what it promises and it needs to use networks such AT&T’s. But I can’t see AT&T playing ball with people like Vanco and as Kevin has pointed out, it goes against AT&T’s own strategy and why would any telco get into bed with somebody that’s trying to become your competitor. Nexagent (started in 2000) is another company proving IP-VPN (I think that’s eVPN’s) on MPLS via it’s patented software over any Telco’s network.

Maybe Vanco has stolen a march on people like AT&T and BT. Both these companies Vanco and Nexagent are in the market where AT&T may be trying to go. Maybe they’ll win over the larger incumbents, as they don’t have to maintain a legacy network, who knows? but it’ll be interesting finding out.

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