Vodafone has announced that it has entered a five-year agreement with BT to use the latter's 21st Century Network (21CN) Ethernet Service as well as delegating the management of traffic and bandwidth from Vodafone's UK base station to BT's own national network.
Under the new agreement, Vodafone will only pay for whatever it uses thereby diminishing the risk associated with a hugely expensive outlay.
In effect, Vodafone becomes a Virtual Network Operator as BT manages and oversees Vodafone's customer base traffic with a structure capable of providing backhaul speeds of up to 60mbps (Ed : that's roughly three 20mbps cable lines).
This will be instrumental in getting Vodafone back in the game as Fixed Mobile Convergence picks up and Vodafone could see itself stranded if it did not invest in sufficient solutions to handle the surge in music downloads, videos, VoIP calls and internet traffic.
Jeni Mundy, Chief Technology Officer of Vodafone UK said in a statement: "By working with BT Wholesale, we are able to realise immediate cost efficiencies and focus on our customers while BT provides a managed service for our growing access and backhaul needs."
BT signed a similar agreement with T-Mobile back in July 2007 and this highlights the immense experience and clout that BT Wholesale has in this field.