AWS CEO outlines the company’s work with telcos

Adam Selipsky, CEO of Amazon Web Services, made an in-person keynote speech at MWC in Barcelona this week, where he itemized many of the ways that AWS is working with telcos.

Selipsky took the head role at AWS in the fall of 2021, but even before that he indicated that he wanted to work closely with telcos.

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This week he said, “Telecom pioneers are modernizing their networks and systems with the cloud, using solutions from AWS.” He said they began their cloud journey by migrating IT infrastructure to “remove a lot of the heavy lifting of managing infrastructure, like servers.”

He gave the examples of Deutsche Telekom and Vodacom Africa, which have both moved the majority of their applications to the cloud with AWS.

In the case of Vodacom Africa, the migration has helped it to create new applications like the VodaPay digital wallet where users can access discounts, send money, order food and pay bills from a mobile device. “That app has been downloaded 1.4 million times, and it only debuted in October [2021],” said Selipsky.


He said AWS is also helping telcos wrangle all their data. New 5G apps and services like video and gaming, digital banking and mobile healthcare services are generating massive amounts of data. “Studies predict that 5G networks will carry 62% of total mobile data traffic in just five years,” he said.

AWS worked with Telia in the Nordics, which built a serverless data platform with AI capabilities in one year. The service provider is using AWS to encrypt, store and analyze customer information.

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A Bell Canada customer — the logistics and transport company Kuehne + Nagel — used Bell to implement a hybrid cloud, running on AWS with cloud storage and an offsite hardware infrastructure, that lets them control, manage and audit their data in compliance with Canadian data sovereignty laws. 


AWS has moved forward in its work with telcos to now help them build their 5G networks.

“Last spring, Dish announced that it’s building a new 5G network entirely on AWS from scratch. They’re working with Nokia on the core and Mavenir on the O-RAN to build a cloud-native 5G network that will give its business customers the ability to customize and scale their network experience on demand,” said Selipsky.

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Dish network chief Marc Rouanne said during a keynote at AWS’ re:Invent in November that working with AWS will allow it to build a network optimized not just for human but also machine-to-machine communications.

AWS is also working with Swisscom, which selected AWS and Ericsson to build a cloud-native, stand-alone 5G core.

And most recently, Telenor said it is running its entire Vimla core, which is its network operator brand in Sweden, on AWS in partnership with Working Group Two, a company incubated by Telenor.

“A very different use case is NTT Docomo in Japan, who like most service providers, is on a mission to reduce carbon footprint,” said Selipsky. “They’re doing that with AWS and our partner NEC to pilot 5G core network functions, running on AWS-designed Graviton 2 processors in the Tokyo region.”

AWS designed these Graviton chips and placed them in compute instances. NTT expects that it will be able to cut energy consumption by as much as 30% when deploying and operating its public 5G network.