Verizon added Amazon Web Services (AWS) Wavelength edge compute capabilities to its service aggregation points in three additional US cities, bringing the total to 13, with the potential for seven more to be added this year.
Srinivasa Kalapala, VP of global technology strategy and network cloud, told Mobile World Live Verizon planned to add around ten markets throughout 2021, depending on customer interest. He said the operator considers the requirements of enterprise customers and software developers when choosing locations for the AWS Wavelength zones.
Software developers targeting enterprise verticals are key to the operator’s 5G strategy, Kalapala said. An application hosted on AWS can reach an end user’s device faster when Verizon’s 5G APIs are available to the developer and the application can be hosted at the operator’s network edge.
Verizon cited developer Aetho as an example. It creates photorealistic 3D avatars through a service called Beame and worked with Morehouse College in Atlanta to create a digital campus maps prospective students can use remotely.
Kalapala explained Verizon expects to see many more customers using low-latency services enabled by the combination of 5G and AWS Wavelength, with manufacturing, automotive, healthcare and gaming industries expressing interest.
The executive added locating the AWS servers in Verizon’s facilities is currently the best way to “expose the APIs with the right outcome”, but noted different configurations might make sense in the future.
Verizon plans to expand its edge cloud capabilities with new spectrum and potentially with new partners: Kalapala explained it plans to incorporate C-Band spectrum into its edge locations, and may add other cloud players.