Cisco, Tech Partners Launch New Open Caching Solution for Service Providers

(Image credit: Cisco)

SAN JOSE & REDWOOD CITY, Calif.—Cisco has announced a partnership with Qwilt and Digital Alpha (DA) to offer a new caching service that the companies claim will address the growing demand for high resolution convent over IP. The first customer of this “as a service” offering is BT, the U.K.’s leading telecommunications and network provider. Qwilt is a provider of edge cloud and open caching software technology for ISPs and DA is an investment firm specializing in digital infrastructure technology development.  

The new “Open Caching (opens in new tab)” service is an open architecture developed and endorsed by the Streaming Video Alliance that aggregates the content delivery infrastructure inside service provider networks into a global CDN with APIs for content publishers and is designed to help service providers easily deploy an edge CDN footprint, offering more control over content flows. It also provides more capacity and consistency in content delivery and performance assurance, the companies said. 

The increase in 4K (and soon 8K) content supporting AR/VR applications across multiple devices over wired and wireless connections is driving the demand for more network capacity, with interview video traffic expected to comprise 82% of all (consumer) internet traffic by 2022 (up form 73% in 2017), according to (opens in new tab) Cisco’s VNI.

The partnership combines Qwilt’s content delivery platform based on Open Caching, with Cisco’s edge compute and networking infrastructure to deliver the solution as-a-service to service providers of all sizes worldwide. BT, in partnership with Qwilt, Cisco and DA, has deployed this solution to add multiple terabits per second of capacity to meet its growing demand in 2020 and beyond. 

More than 50 global service providers, technology vendors and content publishers have already endorsed Open Caching, according to the companies. 

“At BT we connect for good and streaming video has never been more important than in today’s challenging times,” said Neil McRae, chief architect, managing director for Architecture and Technology Strategy at BT. “Our mission at BT is to ensure our customers have the best experience every time and with record levels of streaming we needed to disrupt the status quo. Qwilt’s pioneering open caching platform together with Cisco’s cloud infrastructure gives BT the first 5G MEC capability in the U.K. to deliver premium quality video and on demand services.”

“Streaming video may be the killer app for the internet, but it doesn’t have to KILL the internet,” said Jonathan Davidson, senior vice president and GM, Mass Scale Infrastructure Group, Cisco. “With streaming video expected to represent north of 80% of traffic flowing through service provider networks in the coming years, content delivery is the first of potentially many services they can deploy from within to monetize their edge footprint in the 5G era. Marking this milestone together with Qwilt and Digital Alpha to enable edge cloud services for service providers, we can change the economics of the internet for the future, partnering with customers like BT to help them manage video traffic more effectively.” 

Tom Butts

Tom has covered the broadcast technology market for the past 25 years, including three years handling member communications for the National Association of Broadcasters followed by a year as editor of Video Technology News and DTV Business executive newsletters for Phillips Publishing. In 1999 he launched for internet B2B portal Verticalnet. He is also a charter member of the CTA's Academy of Digital TV Pioneers. Since 2001, he has been editor-in-chief of TV Tech (, the leading source of news and information on broadcast and related media technology and is a frequent contributor and moderator to the brand’s Tech Leadership events.