Orange makes network ready for new needs


"We are the preferred partner for businesses for fixed as well as mobile connections. The current investments show exactly what our ambitions are," says Gabriel Flichy, Chief Network Officer at Orange.

Mobile and Cloud

Gabriel Flichy knows corporate network challenges like no one else. "At Orange, our vision commits to this," he says. In the business world, Flichy sees two major tendencies. "On the one hand, we see more and more applications going mobile," he says. "It is the era of wherever, whenever. Companies want connectivity for their people and for machines. The need for bandwidth has increased as a result."

The other major trend that Flichy has noticed is the increased popularity of cloud applications: "A part of the application is centralised in a data centre, but still needs to be close to the client. Bandwidth is a necessity for this too."

In this story, the Chief Network Officer emphasises just how vital fixed networks are: "Behind every base station, you’ll find a fixed network. They are still very necessary today because of the increasing demand for bandwidth."


Orange invests

At Orange, there is a convergence of fixed and mobile taking place. Gabriel Flichy points to the end-to-end service Mobiline. "This offers the functionality of a fixed line on a mobile connection," he explains. With Mobiline, clients can use a sort of virtual telephone centre, without needing to have one on site and without any costs. A trend, he claims. "Ever more services and applications, including those falling under the All IP services banner, will be offered over the network."

The convergence between fixed and mobile also appears in the investments made by Orange. "Every year, we invest 150 million euro in our network. This is for the fixed and the mobile networks. They actually overlap," he says. But it’s not just fixed and mobile. It’s also indoor and outdoor. "Think for example about the provision of indoor connectivity in companies, to ensure that businesses can benefit from optimal connectivity indoors as well as outdoors," says Flichy. "Of course there are also specific projects for fixed lines, such as the fibre optic connections that offer companies ever more capacity."


The future

Gabriel Flichy sees future demands being paired with the further evolution of network services. One of these is, according to him, the increasing importance of QoS – Quality of Services – where certain network traffic is given priority over other traffic. ‘A different demand is that our network needs to be sufficiently open to the services of other partners.’

Meanwhile, Orange is making its network technically ready for the future by supplying all these IP services and following and stimulating the growth of bandwidth. ‘This is why old technologies, such as ATM, PSTN and SDH will be tapered over the next few years,’ says Flichy. Older infrastructure will be replaced by new, more stable infrastructure with even faster bandwidth connections (such as VDSL), that are based on the Ethernet network protocol. ‘Our network is completely ready for the current and future demands of our clients. They can count on us for optimal network capacity, for both fixed and mobile demands.’


Don’t want a fixed line, but do want the benefits? Contact your account manager for more information. 

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