IBM Extends Cloud Services to AT&T Private Networks

Business partners IBM and AT&T extended their alliance by adding AT&T NetBond to options IBM provides to access its SoftLayer cloud.

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IBM and AT&T announced an agreement to extend IBM’s cloud services to AT&T private networks.

The companies unveiled plans to extend AT&T NetBond services to the IBM SoftLayer platform for stronger security and performance.

This extension of the IBM and AT&T alliance will allow businesses to easily create hybrid-computing solutions. Customers of the new service can use AT&T NetBond to connect their IT infrastructure to SoftLayer’s private network and cloud services using private AT&T Virtual Private Networks (VPNs). The service allows customers to benefit from secure connections with high reliability and performance as an alternative to relying on public Internet access.

“AT&T NetBond gives customers a broader range of options as they explore how to best leverage a hybrid cloud,” said Jim Comfort, general manager of IBM Cloud Services, in a statement. “Customers can easily move workloads to and from SoftLayer as if it were part of their local area network. This added flexibility helps optimize workload performance while allowing customers to scale IT resources in a way that makes sense.”

AT&T officials said AT&T NetBond combines the security of AT&T virtual private networking with cloud resources. As a result, business customers have flexible and high performing access to the cloud. It also dynamically allocates VPN bandwidth, enabling customers to use as much or as little as they need.

IBM said the AT&T NetBond service adds a significant offering to a range of options IBM provides for securing both public Internet as well as private network access to its SoftLayer cloud platform.

“Businesses look to AT&T and IBM to deliver best in class solutions to meet their most demanding needs— especially when it comes to cloud,” said Jon Summers, senior vice president growth platforms of AT&T Business Solutions, in a statement. “Together, we’re making the network as flexible as the cloud and giving enterprises confidence they can migrate their business systems to the cloud and still meet their security, scalability and performance requirements.”

AT&T NetBond works with existing AT&T VPN through APIs creating an automated experience. Customers don’t need to order or manage any other equipment or access lines. The service offers network elasticity that automatically flexes with the needs of the cloud service--companies can save as much as 60 percent on networking costs. It also delivers as much as 50 percent lower latency and three times the availability when compared with the public Internet, AT&T said. NetBond also isolates traffic going directly to cloud platforms using the AT&T private global network, providing more protections from risks such as DDoS attacks.

IBM and AT&T said they expect these capabilities to be available later this year.