UK telco Virgin Media O2 has selected data storage company Pure Storage to support its 47 million connections.

– O2

Virgin will use Pure Storage’s FlashArray//X and Evergreen//Forever tools, with the hope that this will improve the speed and reliability of connections, improve data analytics, and support the company in its net-zero by 2030 goal.

Ajit Sharma, business optimization manager at Virgin Media O2, said: “Pure Storage provides the powerful, reliable storage we need to scale. For Virgin Media O2, Evergreen enables us to drive continuous improvements while building new, innovative solutions that we can bring to market."

"With our legacy storage infrastructure, we were looking at spiraling costs and the prospect of building an additional data center. With the flexibility of Pure, however, we are confident that we can easily scale our capabilities to keep pace with growing data volumes, without worrying about the storage infrastructure our business relies on."

The partnership with Pure Storage has reduced Virgin’s IT needs from 42 racks, to just three with the capacity to handle over four petabytes of data, representing a 96 percent energy-use reduction.

Virgin’s network currently spans 47 million connections including broadband, mobile, TV, and home phones across the UK, and its fixed network passes across 16.1 million premises while the mobile network provides 99 percent of the nation with 4G. In addition, Virgin delivers 5G services to 1,600 cities.

This produces significantly more data than previous 3G/4G networks and, according to Virgin, the Pure Storage solution means that they can be reliably and efficiently processed.

Wes van den Berg, vice president and general manager UK&I at Pure Storage, said: "With connectivity such a key element of modern life, storage that hinders rather than powers fast and reliable mobile services is unacceptable. Our work with Virgin Media O2 has delivered an infrastructure that is stable, dependable, and scalable, matching the demands of Virgin Media O2's 5G network, while enabling the company to drive forward with sustainability goals."

Founded in 2009, Pure Storage provides cloud-based storage solutions and has developed all-flash data storage hardware itself since 2015.

Virgin Media O2 has had a busy 2023. In February, the company was reportedly eyeing up a $121 million bid for fiber broadband company Trooli, and considered offering a takeover bid for full fiber providers CityFibre in March. Last month, the company announced its intention to sell its stake in mobile tower network Cornerstone, a move which has been increasingly popular amongst mobile operators, and partnered up with Mavenir Telecom for its Open RAN deployment.