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Juniper Networks Chosen to Upgrade Virgin Media O2’s Core IP Backbone Network to 800G Readiness


Virgin Media O2, one of the largest fixed and mobile service providers in the UK with about 50 million online media connections, successfully upgraded its IP core backbone network with Juniper, making it capable of supporting 800G, according to a recent announcement from Juniper Networks, a leader in secure, AI-driven networks. Virgin Media O2 is making long-term investments in sustainable infrastructure to meet rising bandwidth and data demand. Its investment supports the quick implementation of revenue-generating services while delivering significantly lower costs and consumption of electricity, cooling, and space.

An essential metric of success is a consistently high level of user experience. Virgin Media O2 resorted to Juniper to establish a network that is 400G-enabled and 800G-ready as its 5G and network growth continues in order to give its customers a nearly future-proofed digital foundation. For a number of factors, including its prior performance as a significant networking provider for more than 10 years with Virgin Media and O2 prior to their joint venture in 2021, Virgin Media O2 chose Juniper as the technology partner for this critical upgrade.

Another crucial element was Juniper’s capacity to offer Virgin Media O2 convincing economics. These include the planned use of automation technologies to assist decrease operational costs, long-term investment protection through continual custom silicon innovation by keeping up with market demands, and a favorable Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) with a lower energy consumption design.

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  • The need for more data capacity and flexible scalability is highlighted by Virgin Media O2’s recent 32% rise in mobile network traffic, 16% growth in broadband data downloads, and a 22TB peak traffic load.
  • With the help of Juniper Networks PTX10008 Packet Transport Routers, which are designed specifically to deliver cloud-optimized network transformation at scale and with operational flexibility, Virgin Media O2 has successfully migrated all core traffic in its six backbone locations throughout the UK.
  • With front-to-back cooling, adjustable power sources that may operate in either high- or low-power modes, and high-density port capabilities that provide optimum throughput in a small form factor, the modular PTX10008 routers reduce resource usage.
  • Ultra-high port density, native inline MACSec encryption on all ports, along with the most recent ASIC innovation that powers a variety of line cards, enable scalable, secure 400G capacity.
  • The PTX10008 routers can support 400G coherent optical transceivers (400G ZR and ZR+) without any density loss in the present, and they can support 800G in the future with easy-exchangeable line cards in the chassis thanks to advances in silicon technology.
  • The infrastructure of Virgin Media O2 will be supported by Juniper’s sole operating system, Junos® OS Evolved. This will provide continuous continuity for activities that are simplified.

“Virgin Media O2’s stated ambition is to ‘upgrade the UK’, providing fast, seamless broadband access and mobile services to as many homes and businesses as possible. This calls for responsible, strategic innovation and investment to create an agile network infrastructure that can simultaneously scale in step with our business, be mindful of resource consumption and deliver an extended lifecycle that protects our investment. Juniper is a long-standing technology partner, so it is very reassuring that it has the same vision for sustainable growth, user experience and the fundamental importance of digital enablement in our communities and economy.”

– Jeanie York, Chief Technology Officer, Virgin Media O2

“Service providers face a complex set of technical and commercial challenges that can be contradictory, even intractable—and likely only to multiply in the future—without the right approach. Virgin Media O2 has chosen to leverage silicon, software and automation innovation from Juniper that can turn complexity on its head to deliver a simplified, more reliable and more sustainable network foundation for its business. This means the company can embrace and accelerate growth and service evolution, safe in the knowledge that its millions of users will continue to be able to enjoy the best digital experiences going forward, whatever demands the future may bring.”

– Raj Yavatkar, Chief Technology Officer, Juniper Networks

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