SD-WAN, uCPE, and Enea Edge – Ingredients for the Intel Network Builders Winners' Circle

By Tomas Hedqvist

 

Portrait picture of Kenneth Jealmo
Kenneth Jeamlo, Director Product Management at Enea and responsible for Enea's relationship with Intel.

Enea has once again been recognized by Intel as a member of the prestigious Intel Network Builders Winners' Circle.

I sat down with Kenneth Jealmo, Director of Product Management here at Enea and responsible for our partnership with Intel, to talk about what this means for Enea.

TH: Kenneth, first let me ask you, what is Intel Network Builders?

KJ: It is a partnership program for vendors and communication service providers in the networking and telecommunication industries. The idea with the program is to align partners and help us use Intel technology in the best way to accelerate the adoption of new solutions. Practically it means that we work together with Intel and other partners in the program to integrate, test and promote our joint solutions. In the end it is the communication service providers and enterprises who use these solutions that benefit from the work we do together with Intel.

TH: And what is the Winners' Circle?

KJ: The Winners' Circle is a recognition by Intel of the partners who are committed to introduce innovations and make a real change in the networking industry. You could say it is the crème de la crème of Intel's networking partners. We have been part of the Winners' Circle for many years now, something I believe shows our dedication to innovation in networking solutions.

TH: So, what is it that we are awarded for?

KJ: We have been very active with Intel around Enea Edge, our uCPE virtualization and management platform. Our customers are running Enea Edge on white boxes based on Intel Atom and Xeon processors, and we use Intel acceleration technologies like DPDK to improve networking performance for the applications hosted on the uCPE.

TH: Can you explain what uCPE is for those who don't know?

KJ: Absolutely! uCPE is essentially a white box appliance with a virtualization layer hosting virtualized network functions like SD-WANs and firewalls. The benefit with uCPE is that a single device can replace the whole stack of fixed-function appliances that you typically find at the customer premises. What's more, it's much easier to manage services because you can restart, upgrade and even replace applications on the uCPE from a remote location, so you may never have to visit the customer premises again if you are a service provider.

TH: What is it that makes Enea Edge special enough to merit the Winners' Circle recognition?

KJ: First of all, I think it's because uCPE is a revolutionary concept that will change not only how networking functions are deployed but also how edge functions like private 5G, IoT, and video analytics can be provided by service providers. But it is also because Enea Edge is unique in its approach. It has been built ground-up for this specific scenario which means it has all the functionality needed, but in a much smaller package. We have noticed that many customers find it much easier to use a uCPE with Enea Edge compared to similar products that are based on solutions for data centers since it is not as big and complex as they tend to be.

TH: Being recognized by an industry giant like Intel is of course extremely positive and will generate a lot of attention, but what else does it mean for Enea to be in the Winners' Circle?

KJ: In concrete terms, it means that we get the opportunity to carry out some joint projects together with Intel and other Winners' Circle members, for example benchmarking and testing of joint solutions. We also get the chance to showcase these solutions through different activities and reach out with our solution to the market. So ultimately, it helps us to continue to innovate and improve our product, making it fit customer needs better and raising performance. Which is, of course, good news for our customers.

TH: I'm looking forward to seeing more activities from Enea and Intel next year. Thank you for the interview!

KJ: Thank you!