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» VIEW ALL POSTS Apr 6 2010   3:53PM GMT

Cha-ching: AT&T aims for business customers with $1 billion spending spree



Posted by: Jessica Scarpati
Tags:
AT&T
business services
cap-ex
network expansion

Recession? What recession? AT&T scoffs at the suggestion, releasing a $1 billion spending plan to feed its cash cow —  its business services, which grew its fourth quarter revenue by 17% year-over-year.

The usually demure telco surprised us by opening its play book for all to see (us to AT&T: keep it up!). The spending plan is broken down (with lots and lots and lots of bullet points) into five main objectives:

* Scaling application services
* Enterprise mobility applications
* Vertical industry focus
* Enhancing small business
* Global network expansion

“Despite the continuing challenges of today’s economic environment, we continue to deliver on our commitment to provide companies with the network-centric capabilities and applications they need to enhance their operations,” said Ron Spears, President and CEO of AT&T Business Solutions.  “IP-based solutions and applications have become ever more important to companies aiming to take their productivity to a new level while transforming their operations to adapt to their customers’ changing needs.”

Including this year’s planned investment, AT&T will have invested more than $4 billion since 2006 in business-focused network, systems and applications to provide a globally consistent set of robust and highly-secure services to the more than 3.5 million business customers it serves.

AT&T is capitalizing on the ongoing shift in network traffic from voice to data and video — and more importantly to IP-based data and video — as customers migrate from legacy data networks to MPLS-based virtual private networks and managed applications.

Get AT&T’s shopping list.

Here’s the plan, as released by AT&T this afternoon:

  • Global Network Expansion:
    • Deploy, upgrade or add diverse IPv6-capable MPLS nodes to support Layer 3 VPN and Global Managed Internet Services, including Gigabit Ethernet customer access across multiple locations in:
      • Europe: Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary, Netherlands, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Spain and Sweden.
      • Asia Pac: Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore and Vietnam.
      • Central and Latin America: Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, Panama and Peru.
    • Leverage AT&T’s network expansion to improve capacity and diversity, and offer services in new markets, expanding the global OPT-E-WAN service footprint from 31 countries to 37 countries.
      Enhance application reporting and performance management.
    • Expand the footprint and capabilities of carrier class switched Ethernet Wireless Backhaul solutions.
    • Continue to expand Ethernet over copper deployment over AT&T’s U.S. footprint to better support customers as they evolve from lower-speed connectivity to Ethernet.
    • Introduce a new metro switched Ethernet service across AT&T’s 22 state U.S. footprint, delivering additional capabilities and bandwidth options while eventually streamlining our Ethernet portfolio.
    • Continue to enhance capabilities of managed AT&T Virtual Private Network Services on a global basis.
    • Deploy IPv6 capable MPLS core routers in Hawaii and Guam to provide an interconnection point for Transpacific cables between the U.S., Australia, Singapore, China and Japan to improve resiliency and performance in the Asia Pacific network.
  • Additional sub sea cable capacity to ensure diversity and resilience including:
    • 180G of new capacity into the Caribbean and South America
    • Over 350G of new capacity from the U.S. to and within Asia Pacific
    • 70G of capacity from the U.S. to Europe
    • This capacity spans multiple subsea cables with more diverse cable landings and terrestrial routing into major cities
  • Emerging Mobility Applications:
    • Extend offers and solutions in three core categories – applications, machine-to-machine (M2M) and integrated network solutions.
    • Continue to expand AT&T’s portfolio of mobile applications across multiple vertical industries, focusing on smart grid solutions and mHealth.
    • Offer enhanced solutions that take advantage of AT&T’s converged fixed and mobile networks including network-based and premise based fixed mobile convergence and super femtocell technology.
    • Increase support for the more than 750 wireless devices already connected to the AT&T network – such as e-readers, netbooks, digital photo frames, personal navigation devices, and home security monitoring and smart grid devices – for use by business customers.
  • Hosting/Cloud Infrastructure Services:
    • Continue to develop and deploy cloud based managed hosting and Infrastructure as a Service capabilities.
    • Add cloud enablers to AT&T Synaptic Storage as a Service that serve as a gateway between customers’ storage systems and AT&T’s cloud.
    • Introduce new turnkey Synaptic Hosting (Utility Computing) products, tailored to small and medium sized businesses.
    • Add new managed hosting standardized packages, making it faster and easier to turn up AT&T Managed Hosting Services.
    • Open an additional internet data center in London.
    • Completing expansions of the Ashburn, Va. and Piscataway, N.J. data centers.
  • AT&T Digital Media Solutions:
    • Additional distribution with the addition of a node in Spain and increased capacity in the U.K. and Germany.
    • Add additional software features, such as Download Manager, to improve customer control and user experience.
    • Improve support for latest streaming technologies.
    • Broaden range of content creation and management tools and services.
  • Unified Communications:
    • AT&T Telepresence Solutions:
      • Install additional telepresence rooms in AT&T offices in
        • Europe: Belgium (Brussels), U.K. (Redditch), and Slovakia (Bratislava, Kosice).
        • Asia Pac: Singapore (Singapore) and Malaysia (Cyberjaya)
        • India: Bangalore and Hinjewadi
        • Latin America: Brazil (Campinas)
        • Canada: Toronto
      • Install new AT&T Business Exchange nodes in Hong Kong and Netherlands to provide regional access and expanded support for Telepresence services.
    • AT&T Connect® Global Conferencing enhancements
      • Expansion of audio conferencing platform to Europe, providing seamless, global, cloud conferencing solutions.
      • Continued investments in enhancements and additional capacity supporting web and video conferencing solutions.
      • Add mobile applications designed to improved productivity of mobility users.
  • Customer contact points:
    • Small Business Transformation:
      • Back-office platform – deliver a streamlined customer experience that includes IP-based bundled offers, integrating wireline and mobility portfolios across the 22-state local footprint.
      • Increase broadband speeds - up to a maximum of 24Mbps downstream in more than 120 markets across the 22-state footprint.
      • Online storefront consolidation – integration of all public internet B2B storefronts into a single att.com/small business storefront, with a consistent look and feel, intuitive offer buy flows, and consistent back office support processes.
      • Application Services: online inventory, ticketing, router monitoring and performance statistics via AT&T BusinessDirect® for existing VPN-managed router services
    • Mobility:
      • Mobile to Any Number for Business - unlimited calling to a user-defined list of wireless/wireline numbers with any carrier.  List will be easily established and maintained online via the AT&T Premier Mobility portal.
      • Online Activation – quick and easy customer online activation of new mobility device/service via the AT&T Premier Mobility portal.
      • Network-Based Fixed Mobile Convergence – developing a network-based integrated wireline/wireless solution to provide fixed mobile convergence services for enterprises.
      • User Ratings -customers will be able to provide product ratings and reviews on new device purchases via the AT&T Premier Mobility portal.
      • Online Employee Shopping – employees of its corporate customers will be able to take advantage of AT&T Premier Mobility online buying and self-servicing utilities, even if their company does not establish a corporate site.
      • Usability Enhancements – improvements to AT&T Premier Mobility inventory reports and downloads, end user dashboards and platform performance.
    • Other:
      • Real-Time Provisioning – provisioning new service/logical change orders in minutes for AVPN and OPT-E-MAN services. Logical changes can be implemented “real time” by customers via an intuitive AT&T BusinessDirect online ordering map.
      • AT&T BusinessDirect Enhancements – additional map-based ticketing, inventory, alarms and SLA credit requests; improved platform performance; increased mechanization for service order flow through/higher order quality with shorter delivery intervals.
  • Vertical Market Segments:
    • AT&T Healthcare Community Online – deploy enhancements to our flagship healthcare solution, which is a highly-secure, cloud-based health information exchange and collaboration portal that improves real-time access to a patient’s health records and relevant applications so that physicians and medical staff can provide faster and more accurate diagnosis at the point of care.

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