Microsoft to buy Metaswitch in telecom push

News

Microsoft has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Metaswitch Networks for an undisclosed amount.

Metaswitch provides virtualised network software and voice, data and communications solutions for operators, so the move will expand Microsoft’s range of offerings for the telecom industry.

The company has long punched way above its weight in the market, due to its innovation and ability to spot trends early – most recently with software for telcos to embrace cloud-native operations.

Last month, Microsoft acquired Affirmed Networks, which specialises in virtualised, cloud-native mobile network solutions.

How the likes of AWS and Google Cloud will respond to Microsoft's staking its claim as telcos' cloud partner of choice remains to be seen.

Yousef Khalidi, Corporate Vice President, Azure Networking, Microsoft, said in a blog post, “The convergence of cloud and communication networks presents a unique opportunity for Microsoft to serve operators globally via continued investment in Azure, adding additional depth to our hyperscale cloud infrastructure with the specialised software required to run virtualised communication functions, applications and networks.”

Cloud-native

He added, “As the industry moves to 5G, operators will have opportunities to advance the virtualisation of their core networks and move forward on a path to an increasingly cloud-native future,” Khalidi said. “Microsoft will continue to meet customers where they are, working together with the industry as operators and network equipment providers evolve their own operations.”

Microsoft said it will continue to support hybrid and multi-cloud models and to partner with network equipment providers in areas such as radio access networks (RAN), next-generation core, virtualised services, orchestration and OSS/BSS modernisation.

“A future that is interoperable has never been more important to ensure the success of customers and partners,” a statement said.

Martin Lund, CEO, Metaswitch Networks, commented, “Throughout its history, Metaswitch has been recognised as a trusted, independent developer of critical networking software, delivering products and solutions worldwide to more than 1,000 communications service providers and network equipment providers. 

"We built a continuously innovative, growing, well-respected and profitable business.  We have fuelled the telecommunications industry through multiple technology eras and evolutions, most recently pioneering the development of ultra-high-performance cloud-native communications software.”

“This software is underpinning modern cloud-based communication networks, in the core and at the edge, and has driven today’s announcement with Microsoft,” he said.