Yet again in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant

Telia, through its networking division Telia Carrier, have once again been recognized in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Network Services, Global*. Each year, the analyst and advisory firm evaluates global network providers based on completeness of vision and ability to execute. To be included is a rigorous exercise: service providers need to have a global network with coverage across Europe, North America and Asia; sell services to customers in all three regions; and offer a full portfolio of networking services such as WAN transport, cloud interconnect, managed SD-WAN and NFV/vCPE.

We have much to be proud of in sustaining our standing, and for our enterprise customers, our services have never been more relevant. Here are some of the reasons why.

A network for accelerated digitalization and cloud adoption

Our recognition in the Magic Quadrant is supported by the market transformation towards cloud and Internet connectivity. In 2020, when the global economy and the telecom industry were put under incredible strain by the COVID-19 pandemic, the value of the network as a mission critical enabler was truly put to the test. As noted in the report, enterprises had to rapidly change working practices, accelerate digital and cloud transformations, and cope with rapidly changing business circumstances.

Our #1 global Internet backbone and cloud ecosystem put us in a unique position to serve these needs. Overall, as the amount of traffic increased, so has the depth of the peering network and ecosystem. Our network AS1299 connects anyone (and anything) that matters, including more than 700 cloud and content providers and 1,000 network operators, serving customers in more than 125 countries worldwide. As enterprises and societies adapted to a new reality, traffic surged with more than 50%, growing the total traffic over our IP network to a mind-blowing 70+ Tbps. The shift to a work-from-anywhere environment saw traffic to web conferencing solutions increasing 4-6x over just a single month, direct Cloud interconnections growing 6x compared to prior quarters, and cloud security solutions doubling.

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the true value of agility for enterprise networks as enterprises have had to rapidly change working practices, accelerate digital and cloud transformations, and cope with rapidly changing business circumstances.

Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Network Services, Global. March 2, 2021

Scaling with a secure and stable Internet

However, as reliance on the Internet increased, enterprises also needed to mitigate increasing exposure to attacks. One of our underlying foundations is IP Transit, ensuring a direct route between content and end-users. With our IP customer base accounting for 65% of all Internet routes and a highly evolved Tier 1 peering ecosystem, we ensure traffic is given a clear path to its destination. And when it comes to security, we take our responsibility very seriously. We were the first Tier 1 provider to fully implement RPKI routing security, which prevents hackers from advertising prefixes, stealing traffic and denying transactions.

Through a mix of industry best practices, systems, and policies, we minimize the chances of common routing threats, including BGP hijacks and route leaks. In 2020, Telia Carrier successfully mitigated peak attacks exceeding 990Gbps and 880Mpps. We continue to enhance our industry leading DDOS mitigation product capabilities with automation and a reporting feature set to help customers better understand and protect the network.

Enabling network agility on a global basis

The latest Magic Quadrant report also highlights the way that the pandemic showcased the true value of agility for enterprise networks. According to Gartner, this made flexible technologies and sourcing approaches even more essential to rapidly accommodate for new endpoints outside the traditional WAN, enabling new applications and new network capabilities, while controlling their WAN expenditure. At Telia Carrier, we see enterprises looking for new provider options – someone that can challenge the status quo.

We continue to add new edge markets to improve performance and scale for applications, cloud and content. Last year, we added 30 PoPs across Europe, North America and Mexico (check out our network). By improving access into additional high growth data centers, we bring connectivity closer to end-users. In the US for example, we continue to add new routes between major cities and rural edge markets across North America. We have also expanded our network partnerships and NNIs (network-to-network interface) adding greater diversity and flexibility. We also expanded our network in Africa and added NNI partners in Asia as well.

Technology leadership and improved service with AI and machine learning

Along with our expansion, we are constantly upgrading our network with the latest technology to stay ahead of the curve. Following our 400G trials in 2020, new technology from Cisco and Arista will be deployed across the underlying network core, and we will be investing further in our long-haul DWDM infrastructure across the US and Europe, bringing even lower latency and enabling more agile handling of multi-Tb traffic. The report also highlights Telia Carrier’s work on AI and machine learning to automate connectivity and restoration activities, thereby improving customer response and quote time. This year we will be adding several new features to provide customers with greater network transparency, making it possible to monitor, manage and improve service automation on the network.

Big enough to matter, small enough to care

Telia is a niche player in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant this year too – a position that suits us well. Our network is a great choice for those who want a partner who does not attempt to be everything to everyone, but focused on being best-in-class within the area they choose to compete. In our case, Telia Carrier’s global reach, extensive and high-capacity global Internet backbone with strong peering capabilities, and extensive coverage of networks, Internet, MPLS and Ethernet in Europe and North America, make us an excellent partner for CIOs or multinational companies seeking to accelerate their global cloud journey. We are proud to work with businesses who care about an excellent customer experience, and those who seek more agility out of their networks.

Thanks to all colleagues, customers, and partners – I’m looking forward to continuing our growth journey in the enterprise networking market, always challenging the status quo.

Johan Ottosson, VP Strategy, Telia Carrier


*Gartner “Magic Quadrant for Network Services, Global” by Neil Rickard, Bjarne Munch, Danellie Young, March 2, 2021.