AT&T Williams Sees Benefits from Global Networking
San Antonio, Texas, February 2, 2007
Oxford, UK - As AT&T Williams unveiled its 2007 FW29 Formula One car at the team's headquarters at Grove, Oxfordshire, AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) announced AT&T's plans to support the team in the forthcoming 2007 Formula One world championship season.
AT&T is implementing a comprehensive, fully managed communications solution for the team, as part of a multiyear title sponsor agreement announced in October 2006. Through the application of communications technology, AT&T aims to help the team gain a competitive advantage and is supporting the team with its advanced portfolio of Internet Protocol (IP)-based communications services. The relationship with the team will provide AT&T with a global showcase for its products and services and will directly improve performance and resources of the AT&T Williams team in the increasingly demanding world of motor sport where pushing the boundaries of technology is key to success.
Even before the start of the 2007 Formula One season, the AT&T Williams team has already seen immediate benefits. During a recent test session at the Jerez circuit in Spain, AT&T delivered a fivefold improvement in network performance. This gave the team significantly enhanced productivity and the opportunity to make real-time adjustments to the car, based on live data transmitted from the test sessions to the team's facilities in Oxford.
To transfer 100MB files between Jerez and Grove historically averaged between 40 and 50 minutes. The reason: Previously, the team transferred data on a shared network and had to contend with other customers using a common wide area network provided on first-come, first- served basis. Since the deployment of the AT&T global network, file transfers have averaged 8.5 minutes.
The benefits of working with AT&T were apparent from Day One, according to Alex Burns, the chief operating officer of Williams. "Like most Formula One teams before AT&T became involved, we had to take a piecemeal approach to our networking resources," he said.
"Our primary mission is to build and operate race cars and win races — not run a network — but having a reliable and robust IT infrastructure is a basic requirement. In the past, we would assemble the resources we needed from a number of suppliers and integrate the different elements together in-house to meet our unique requirements."
"It worked, but we found it complex to manage and expensive, and determining the optimum solution was very resource-draining."
"Today working with AT&T, the situation has changed radically. Their experts have been able to come in, assess what we have, listen to our requirements and design an integrated solution that they can manage, deliver and run for us. Now all I need to do is say, 'This is what we need'; AT&T can figure how this can be best done, and then they can deliver to the team a fully packaged solution. The team is already seeing the benefits, in terms of significantly improved performance."
Mark Keiffer, chief marketing officer of AT&T welcomed the immediate benefits that AT&T has been able to bring to the team. "As title sponsor of the AT&T Williams team, I am delighted that the power of global networking is making an immediate impact on the support the team needs. Formula One is a complex, data- and networking-intensive sport, and it makes a fantastic platform for AT&T to showcase our technology worldwide," he added.
AT&T is providing the team with a full suite of advanced IP-based communications services, including:
- Virtual private network (VPN). AT&T is providing the team with a VPN, allowing for seamless communications around the world. A permanent and dedicated connection to the AT&T Williams VPN at every Formula One race track and major test venues will yield highly secure and reliable communications to the team's headquarters and other key locations, including engine partner Toyota. A permanent connection will provide the team with plug-and-play network connectivity, which eliminates the complex and time-consuming hook-up to an expensive temporary connection.
- Voice over IP (VoIP). AT&T's network connection to the track side means that the team can benefit from the latest Voice over IP (VoIP) technology, allowing voice telephone calls to be made over the same network as the company's data files. This means that the need for separate voice lines can be avoided, saving costs and complexity, while users at track side will benefit from access to their normal PBX functions, such as voice mail and internal directory. Calls to and from the racing circuit and team headquarters will be treated as internal calls, thus, avoiding expensive international call charges.
- Web-Hosting. AT&T is providing its advanced Web-hosting services to the team's new state-of-the-art Web site (www.attwilliams.com). The Web site will allow for increasing amounts of video casting, webcasts and rich media content with flexible access to increased bandwidth, as and when needed. For all teams in Formula One, the huge global popularity of the sport means that the team Web sites are a vital means of connecting with fans. In the run up to a race and during the race itself, there can be immense demand from Web users around the world, placing tremendous strain on the Web site.
- On-Site Support for the Team. AT&T Williams will have its own dedicated technical support at every race, so any issues that need addressing are taken care of immediately.
- Other Services. AT&T Williams will be accessing a range of other services to support the team activities, including remote access, Internet connectivity and security and anti-DDOS technology.
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