AT&T has announced plans to increase the integration of its multi-access edge compute (MEC) platform with Google Cloud to enable it to deliver new 5G and edge solutions for businesses in verticals such as retail, healthcare, manufacturing and entertainment. In June, AT&T also announced plans to shift its 5G core network to Microsoft Azure, a move it expects to help increase productivity, substantially reduce its engineering and development costs, and give it the flexibility to rapidly innovate and launch new 5G-enabled services.
These announcements form part of the growing push for telcos to embrace the public cloud to deliver on the 5G promise. Proponents of the public cloud have long touted significant benefits for telcos in their efforts to create new customer experiences and use cases for 5G and MEC solutions. These include reduced costs, accelerated R&D and existing relationships between major hyperscalers (such as AWS, Google Cloud and Microsoft Azure) and enterprises.
The discourse around the public cloud was a key feature at the just concluded MWC Barcelona, where Cloud City by TelcoDR was one of the main attractions of the show and Swisscom announced a deal with AWS to build its cloud-native 5G network.