Picture this, by 2021, there will be 4.6 billion global Internet users, 27.1 billion networked devices and connections, and 82 percent of all IP traffic will be video, according to Cisco’s Visual Networking Index. What’s even more amazing is that more members of the global population (7.8 billion according to United Nations) will be using mobile phones (5.5 billion) than bank accounts (5.4 billion), running water (5.3 billion), or landlines (2.9 bilion). OK, the last one is probably not that surprising.

With the increase in mobile, IP, and video traffic over the next five years, service provider networks will continue to phase bandwidth challenges. To ensure continuous delivery of the best connected experience for their customers, leading service providers  such as Vodafone Germany are innovating and transforming their network to support the next wave of innovation and traffic.

As one of the largest telecom operators in Germany delivering mobile, broadband and business services, Vodafone Germany understands the significance of network transformation to deliver new services as future innovations around 5G and IoT rise. This is why they made the decision to build a new core network grounded on the promises of software defined networking (SDN). Working in close partnership with Cisco, Vodafone will use segment routing to help enable increased network simplicity, scale, and programmability.

“With the capabilities of segment routing, Vodafone Germany will have a programmable network that will allow us to adapt easily to future customer needs and deliver new services faster, said Niels Hanke, Senior IP Design Engineer, Vodafone GmbH.” We are confident in our partnership with Cisco to evolve our network with segment routing  in order to continue to offer quality connected experiences.”

Segment Routing Truly Makes Network Infrastructures SDN-Ready

With the network infrastructure facing an increase of expectations and workloads driven by the growth of devices and connections, networks need to scale in an unprecedented fashion. Segment routing brings together the best of distributed intelligence and centralized control in an innovative way, simplifying networks while delivering application relevance. This technology has emerged as an ideal design for SDN deployments.

Vodafone Germany went live with segment routing in August 2016 and the benefits were numerous such as:

  • Simplified operations – no specific protocol is required, it’s just simple extensions to current routing protocols. Cutting down on the number of protocols made network engineering simpler and less error-prone. Vodafone Germany could now remove the full mesh of RSVP-TE tunnels and simplify Fast ReRoute configuration by 80 percent.
  • Programmability and Scalability– sensitive traffic can be directed over paths that match certain latency requirements without having to maintain any state in the network fabric. Vodafone Germany is currently witnessing a 50 percent latency reduction, which is unprecedented at this level of scalability.
  • Increased network availability – the segment routing-based fast-reroute solution, TI-LFA, can provide per-destination sub-50msec protection upon any single link, node or SRLG failure regardless of the topology. Vodafone Germany was able to simplify their infrastructure by removing 19,000 legacy protection tunnels while offering a high-level of SLA.

We’re excited to be working with Vodafone Germany on this initiative as we are seeing wide industry support for its innovative capabilities. We are fundamentally changing the way applications and networks interact in a simple and scalable manner. In selecting Cisco’s segment routing technology, Vodafone Germany is bringing its core network infrastructure into the SDN realm while delivering high bandwidth and customer experience that defines the network of the future.


Jonathan Davidson

EVP and General Manager

Cisco Networking