The Strategic Direction: NFV and Manx Telecom

The Isle of Man, the home of Manx Telecom, is one of the most unique and picturesque places on Earth. Floating like an emerald jewel in the Irish Sea, this tiny island is a self-governing UK Crown dependency. The Isle of Man is fiercely proud of the independence of its own institutions, including Manx Telecom.

Founded in 1987, in response to the island’s preference for its own telecommunications provider, Manx Telecom is the island’s primary provider of a broad array of data center, hosting, broadband, fixed line, and mobile communications services. Its Global Solutions division operates throughout the world, and the company enjoys a reputation for innovation that belies the size of its homeland: it was the first company in Europe to launch a live 3G network, and first in the world to offer an HSDPA service. Building on that tradition of innovative industry leadership, in 2015, Manx Telecom embarked on a strategy to virtualize multiple telecom and broadband services onto a network functions virtualization (NFV) platform.

Improving Service, Capacity, and Flexibility

“Our move to NFV was driven by a need to replace current services,” says Manx Telecom’s chief information and technology officer (CITO), Kevin Paige. The company also wanted to improve its service capacity, agility, and flexibility. With NFV, Manx Telecom realized it could invest in a platform that could solve all of those problems. The company has been discovering new benefits ever since.

One of those new benefits involves a famous tradition on the island. The annual Isle of Man TT motorcycle racing festival in June dramatically expands the island’s population as tens of thousands of fans arrive for two weeks of action and entertainment. Such events would traditionally reduce overall network operating efficiency by requiring service infrastructure to be built to handle peak loads. NFV offers the potential to handle these peak loads by reallocating infrastructure capacity between services, on demand. “Our platform expansion capability is now radically changed,” adds Paige, “because NFV allows Manx Telecom to easily add capacity from one service to the next.”

A Platform for the Future

Having consolidated elements of its IT and telecoms services, the company’s next step is moving its cloud services onto the NFV platform. Paige concludes, “Summing it up in one sentence, NFV represents flexibility, agility, and, ultimately, the strategic direction that all telco services will evolve towards.”

Watch the video to learn more about the benefits Manx Telecom has realized with NFV.