Novell Inc has announced that its directory and identity management technologies have been chosen by BT Group Plc to underpin its 21st Century Network project to roll out a new next-generation IP-based network.
The Waltham, Massachusetts-based Linux and identity management vendor will create a directory and identity management package to enable BT to build the Profile Capability of 21CN, which will be a common identity platform for integrating voice, data, broadband, mobility, on-demand video, and ICT services.
BT is already using Novell directory and identity technologies for its own Corporate Meta Directory services, and the new customer-facing 21CN package will similarly be based on Novell’s Identity Manager and eDirectory products.
BT has committed to spending approximately 10bn pounds ($18.9bn) on the 21CN project, which will see the movement of BT’s entire customer base on to an IP-based network, the first time a major carrier had agreed to totally abandon a traditional public switched telephone network in favor of an IP-based network.
A trial implementation is currently under way in Cardiff and is expected to have upgraded all 350,000 customer lines in the Cardiff area by summer 2007. Once the final part of the trial in Cardiff has been completed, BT said it would begin an in-depth review with other communication providers before rolling out the upgrade to the rest of the UK, which has some 30 million telephone lines and 5,500 telephone exchanges. The national roll-out is expected to start from January 2008.