Why is Transformation so Difficult?
By: Mark Cummings, Ph.D. 4/2017
It has been many years now since the concept of telecommunications transformation emerged, and yet we seem to be having a hard time getting there. Looking at the last time such a fundamental change was made leads to the conclusion that to achieve transformation, telecommunications companies (Telcos) need to learn to do business with small innovative technology start-up companies and to use business cases to help all portions of their companies to understand the need to implement the resulting innovative technology.
There are forces driving the Transformation effort. As early as 2012, a senior executive of Deutsche Telekom stated publicly that the current methods of operating and orchestrating Telco networks are resulting in a non-linear increase in operating costs. This increase in costs along with pricing pressure has been cited the reason for dramatic reductions dividends by many Telcos including Orange and Deutsche Telekom. About the same time SDN (Software Defined Networking) and NFV (Network Function Virtualization) appeared. As Google, Facebook, and Amazon started to combine SDN and NFV with their Cloud technologies, some Telcos started studying how they operate and orchestrate their networks. (Read full article)
CEM Orchestration and Big Data
Mark Cummings, Ph.D. 3/2017
There are two approaches to Customer Experience Management getting a lot of attention today. They are End-to-End Orchestration (EEO) and Big Data. Some argue for one over the other as a single complete solution. While, in fact, they both have an important and complementary role to play. Similarly, there are differences of opinion about fully distributed vs. fully centralized solutions. Here again, the correct answer is not “either or” but “both and”. To better understand these complementary relationships we will first briefly explore the relationship between Customer Experience Management (Quality of Experience or QoE) and network Quality of Service Management (QoS). Then we will examine real-time response and pattern mining and how they can work together. In this context, we will look at topology and examine how distributed and centralized approaches complement each other and are driven by external factors. This discussion is a first simplified high-level view. (Read full article)
Securing the Modern Cellco
By: Mark Cummings, Ph.D. 2/2017
Generally, attacks on Cellco networks start with penetration of a single network component and then use that component to attack other components in the network. It is only after a critical mass of components have been compromised that severe damage to the network results. Because of the scale, complexity, and volatility of Cellco networks, what is needed is a very fast means of quickly identifying an intrusion or infection and preventing it from propagating or moving through the network. Trying manually to detect and respond fast enough to prevent damage has proven difficult. An automated system is needed, one that can identify attacks quickly and prevent them from spreading. (Read full article)
Collaboration Effort, Making Progress
By: Mark Cummings, Ph.D. 1/2017
A broad range of Telecommunications industry participants came together from December 6 to 10 in Bonn Germany in two consecutive meetings both hosted by Deutsche Telekom. The first was a Network and Service Management (NSM) Workshop. The second was a Multi SDO and Open Source Group (MSDO/OSG) collaboration effort. The results of both meetings are very promising in that they point to a new way of operating networks that will meet society’s need for innovative and cost effective services while enabling financially strong network service providers. This vision has been building for some time and recently the NFV industry experience has catalyzed the industry to come together in a concerted effort to make it happen. (Read full article)
To date, conventional technology from traditional vendors has had difficulty responding to the challenges. While small, innovative companies are starting to emerge, telcos have not had a lot of experience dealing with small, innovative companies. Therefore, with the prospect of increasing competition from OTTs on the horizon, partnerships between small innovators and large vendors are emerging.
One theme running through telco financial reports the last several years is the challenge of controlling operations costs while facing pricing pressure. In large part, this is due to the silos of highly manual operations that have evolved. But now events on the horizon may turn up the heat. (Read full article)
This ETSI Industry Specification Group for network functions virtualization (NFV) “Workshop on Information Modeling for NFV,” hosted by CableLabs, turned out to have an amazing atmosphere of collaboration driven by the evolution of technology and the increasing costs of operating networks. (See Capturing the Promise of Virtualization)
These industry experts represented a broad range of computing and communications standard development organizations (SDOs) and open source groups, including 3GPP SA5, ATIS, BBF, DMTF, ETSI NFV ISG, IETF, ITU-T, MEF, OASIS TOSCA, OCC, ONF, OPNFV and TM Forum, among others. (Read full article)
Accelerating Telco cloud transformation by addressing SDN/NFV implementation roadblocks
Mark Cummings CTO, Orchestral Networks | Jayanta Dey, CTO-GMT & PES, Wipro
Network Virtualization coupled with automated management is rapidly evolving into a game changer for next generation communication service providers due to growing market demand for flexible, agile and cost efficient multi-service support. However the possible gains are being eroded by existing management information silos, hampering flexibility and resulting in operational inefficiency. Our estimate* shows that even small Telco’s could be paying upwards of a $400 million Operations and Integration Tax every year.
This whitepaper paper describes how partners Wipro & Orchestral Networks combine innovative technology, world-class engineering and deployment services to provide a cost effective way to solve this problem and enable an on-ramp for rapid NFV implementation.
Click here to download White paper
Wipro and Orchestral Networks are strategic partners. Together, they focus on delivering operations infrastructure solutions that meet network operators’ pressing need for multivendor end-to-end network optimization/orchestration while providing a rapid on-ramp for emerging standards (such as NFV SDN). The partnership combines Orchestral Networks’ innovative ON1 product with Wipro’s deep engineering capabilities.
For more information about Wipro please visit: http://www.wipro.com
Overcoming Virtualization Challenges, a TM Forum Interview with CTO Mark Cummings
Orchestral Networks’ Public Demonstrations
Orchestral Networks has done three public demonstrations: at TMForum Conference in San Jose Nov. 2014; TeleManagement World in Nice, France May 2013; and NGMN Conference in San Jose June 2012. The demonstrations showed multivendor multidomain solutions to Use Cases selected by network operators. More details can be found at: : https://www.ngmn.org/news/archive/archive-details/article/ngmn-alliance-announces-converged-operations-showcase.html