Former CenturyLink CTO Hussain Resurfaces at Verizon Business; Back on MEF's Board
Former CenturyLink CTO Aamir Hussain has landed at Verizon Business as its senior vice president and chief product officer and re-gained a seat on MEF's board of directors.
According to his LinkedIn profile, Hussain was hired by Verizon Business last month. Hussain was CenturyLink's CTO for just over four years before he was replaced by current CTO Andrew Dugan in 2018. Dugan was previously CTO of Level 3 prior to it being bought by CenturyLink. Hussain was on MEF's board of directors prior to his departure from CenturyLink. Dugan took over that seat and still currently serves on MEF's board.
Nan Chen, President, MEF - Q&A: Telecom Carriers Eye Automation to Deliver Robust Networking Solutions
MEF, a US-based international industry consortium has undertaken a number of programs related to the fifth-generation (5G) network technology, and initiatives for carriers’ transformation in the cloud era. In an interaction with ETTelecom’s Muntazir Abbas, MEF President Nan Chen said that security continues to be a core focus area for the forum and service operators are increasingly looking at the need to become more automated to deliver powerful networking solutions. Edited excerpts.
Nuage, Versa and Infovista Named MEF 3.0 SD-WAN Vendors
MEF has announced that Nokia’s Nuage Networks, Versa Networks and Infovista have become the first vendors certified to support MEF 3.0 SD-WAN services.
“SD-WAN is gaining incredible excitement and momentum for empowering digital transformation,” said Nan Chen (pictured), president of MEF. “We congratulate Nuage Networks, Versa Networks, and Infovista for achieving MEF 3.0 certification and demonstrating that they are a standards-based partner for service providers developing SD-WAN services. We look forward to continued momentum with the MEF 3.0 SD-WAN certification program, including the announcement of our first group of certified service providers later this quarter.”
Nuage, Versa and Infovista Make the Grade for MEF 3.0 SD-WAN Certification
Nuage Networks, Versa Networks and Infovista are the first vendors to sail through MEF's SD-WAN certification process, which is administered by Spirent Communications.
By garnering certification, the three SD-WAN vendors proved their services comply with MEF's SD-WAN Service Attributes and Services (MEF 70) standard that was published last summer after two years of development.
Nuage, Versa, and Infovista today became the first vendors to receive the MEF 3.0 SD-WAN certification. The certification, developed by MEF and first announced in November, aims to help network operators and IT professionals choose an SD-WAN vendor with confidence.
“We congratulate Nuage Networks, Versa Networks, and Infovista for achieving MEF 3.0 certification and demonstrating that they are a standards-based partner for service providers developing SD-WAN services,” said MEF President Nan Chen in a statement.
MEF is pleased to announce that Nuage Networks from Nokia, Versa Networks, and Infovista are the first technology vendors certified to support MEF 3.0 SD-WAN services. This certification enables service and technology providers to validate the conformance of their services and products to the industry-leading SD-WAN Service Attributes and Services (MEF 70) global standard.
Editor's Corner—MEF Makes a Play at OTT Cloud Providers En Route to World Federation of Carriers
MEF19, 18 Nov – 22 Nov – MEF executives outlined an ambitious roadmap at last month's MEF19 conference in Los Angeles that included snagging more business with hyperscale cloud providers and federated models for carriers.
During his keynote address, MEF CTO Pascal Menezes outlined how the LSO Sonata API could be used, along with Carrier Ethernet, to provision services from a cloud provider to a carrier's network edge. Menezes, as well as MEF President Nan Chen, also said that MEF would focus on underlays and overlays starting next year, which includes using the LSO Sonata inter-carrier API as the connecting point between the two. Menezes said SD-WAN can become the gateway of an overlay model that uses a high-speed transport underlay regardless of what that underlay is.
Nan Chen, President, MEF - Q&A: MEF Leads SD-WAN Service Standardization & Certification
In July 2019, MEF published the industry’s first global standard defining an SD-WAN service and its service attributes. In this interview, MEF President Nan Chen discusses a range of SD-WAN-related standardization and certification initiatives and how MEF’s work will benefit the market.
Spirent Perspective: SD-WAN: Protecting the Protection in the Virtualized Environment
While contemporary telecommunications were built on standards, SD-WAN has emerged largely unscathed, that is until this past summer. In late July, MEF ratified the industry’s first SD-WAN Standard. MEF 70 helps restore order to an otherwise highly fragmented market. Managed Services providers in particular stand to benefit from the new standard, which facilitates the dialogue with customers using a common benefit while taking a step towards integrating the SD-WAN islands as MSPs to significantly reduce the costs of maintaining multiple vendors.
Podcast: Nuage CEO on the Market Impact of MEF's SD-WAN Standards
Last year, MEF announced initial progress on standards for SD-WAN at MEF18, and in August this year published its standard -- SD-WAN Service Attributes and Services (MEF 70) -- which included contributions from service providers and vendors including Nuage Networks (Nokia), Fujitsu Network Communications, Amdocs, Ceragon, Cisco, Colt, Futurewei, Silver Peak, TDS Telecom, Verizon and other MEF member companies.
Ericsson Perspective: MEF 2019: Get Engaged With the World of Enterprise
Service providers in the ICT industry will play a crucial role in the digital transformation of enterprises. Automated networks will have a huge impact on the enterprise arena, and it’s time for operators and vendors to be more visible in the enterprise space. A great place to start is one of the biggest enterprise events of the year: the 2019 MEF event.
SD-WAN | Empowering Telecoms for Next Era of Connectivity
SD-WAN is empowering telecom operators and communications service providers to become great enablers by delivering connectivity solutions – not only designed for today’s networks, but also prepare for a 5G scenario in a better manner.
As part of a precursor discussion to the upcoming MEF19 global event – Pascal Menezes, Chief Technology Officer, MEF, speaks with Zia Askari from TelecomDrive.com about SD-WAN and why it is becoming important for telecoms and enterprise communities today and how can this technology shape up things in a 5G era.
Industry Voices—Raynovich: Key Trends for SD-WAN Managed Services
In addition to specific service-provider efforts, the MEF industry group is defining a set of SD-WAN services in its MEF 3.0 initiatives. As part of that effort, the MEF has also launched APIs to enable service providers to implement full service-level agreements and quality of service (QoS) that can be carried across service-provider boundaries to encourage interoperability.
SD-WAN | Enabling Efficient Network Transformation Opportunities for Telecoms
As telecoms and communications service provider community looks up to do more with their existing networks and enable transformation – Software-Defined WAN or SD-WAN is at the forefront of achieving efficient network transformation. Talking about SD-WAN and its growing importance for the telecoms as well as the enterprise community, Pascal Menezes, Chief Technology Officer, MEF, explained why it is becoming a critical element in telecoms quest for efficient network transformation and at the same time deliver digital transformation for the enterprise community.
MEF on 5G Deployment Considerations and Automating Lifecycle Service Orchestration
Communications industry association MEF has roots in mobile transport and mobile backhaul. But, according to MEF Board Member Rami Yaron, as new use cases are introduced in the 5G era, carrier needs are evolving, causing MEF (formerly Metro Ethernet Forum) to expand its services.
Industry Voices—Chua: The Multi-Everything SD-WAN and Thoughts from SD-WAN Summit 2019
One of the more contentious topics at the conference was the role of standardization in SD-WAN. Some see value in efforts underway by organizations like the MEF and ONUG, and now, MEF + ONUG as a team, but others remain ambivalent. In any early field that’s grown organically, as opposed to one that needs to be standards-based like WiFi to ensure interoperability, there’s bound to be different stances. From a carrier standpoint, some standardization is helpful as they try to onboard multiple vendors onto their platforms and attempt to integrate them into their orchestration systems and core networks. From an SD-WAN vendor standpoint, particularly those enterprise-direct focused, they’ve had little demand for standardization. Instead, feature richness and performance demands show up more often on sales team requests.
MEF and ONUG Develop Advanced SD-WAN Managed Services
MEF and ONUG are partnering to ensure that enterprises have communications services optimized for digital transformation in the multi-cloud era. Under the terms of the collaboration, MEF will use ONUG’s hybrid multi-cloud enterprise and end-user requirements to accelerate the development of MEF 3.0 SD-WAN managed services standards and related certification programs for services, technologies, and professionals.
The Open Networking User Group (ONUG) today announced a collaboration with MEF to accelerate the standardization and adoption of SD-WAN technologies. The partnership is centered around ensuring that SD-WAN vendors are developing products that meet the needs of both enterprises and the service providers that serve them.
MEF and ONUG Collaborate to Drive Standards for Hybrid Cloud SD-WAN Services
MEF and ONUG are combining their collective SD-WAN expertise for the further development of SD-WAN service delivery models and standards. The expected outcome will lead to the creation of ONUG reference solutions for SD-WAN underlay and overlay scenarios that will serve as blueprints for accelerating SD-WAN adoption by service providers and enterprises.
MEF will use ONUG's research into what enterprises want from SD-WAN to drive standards for services that are more attractive to telcos' enterprise customers, the two organizations say. The goal: Helping service providers drive revenue by meeting enterprise needs.
Stan Hubbard, MEF - Q&A: MEF19 Preview: Accelerate Your Digital Transformation
Two months from now, communications leaders from around the world will gather at MEF19 to focus on accelerating the industry transformation to dynamic, assured, and certified services across a global federation of automated networks. This year, we are set to welcome an audience of 1,000+ attendees from 275+ companies and 35+ countries to the event, held 18-22 November at the JW Marriott LA Live in Los Angeles.
Stan Hubbard, MEF - Q&A: MEF19 Provides All You Need For Your 2020 Digital Transformation Strategy
Whether it is MEF 3.0 services, SD-WAN, edge computing or inter-provider service automation with LSO APIs – happening in Los Angeles during 18th – 22nd November, 2019 – MEF19 is setting an ideal stage for global telecoms community to understand the complete 2020 digital transformation strategy and how they can make this digital transformation journey ahead.
MEF unveiled the first standardized definition for SD-WAN. The new standard has already garnered widespread support from numerous industry leaders in the SD-WAN space including Nokia-Nuage, Fujitsu Network Communications, Amdocs, Ceragon, Cisco, Colt, Futurewei, Silver Peak, TDS Telecom, and Verizon to name a just a handful.
The organization on Wednesday announced approval of SD-WAN Service Attributes and Services, aka MEF 70, to provide a common language for enterprises buying SD-WAN services from service providers, so enterprises know what they're buying and service providers know what they should be selling. MEF 70 is an extension into SD-WAN of MEF's mission to provide standards to allow service providers to partner across networks.
MEF Announces New Board of Directors for 2019-2020
MEF announced its new board of directors on Thursday after elections at the MEF Annual Members Meeting in Philadelphia. In addition to announcing its new board of directors and officers, MEF also thanked Comcast Business' Kevin O’Toole and Infovista's Rami Yaron for their prior service on the board.
Pascal Menezes, CTO, MEF - Q&A: Setting the Standard for SD-WAN
MEF is planning to formally publish the industry's first SD-WAN service standard during its Annual Members Meeting in late July. MEF CTO Pascal Menezes was kind enough to sit down with TeleGeography to discuss the new standard, its relevance to enterprise users, and next steps for SD-WAN standardization and market development.
Ovum's Brian Washburn and Heavy Reading's Sterling Perrin spoke with Light Reading about how MEF has stepped in to create SD-WAN specifications to provide clarity in the market, and how this service definition could impact the SD-WAN market which raked in revenue of "26% quarter over quarter to reach $359 million in the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2018," according to IHS Markit.
AT&T, Colt Use MEF’s LSO Sonata APIs to Automate Network Ordering
AT&T and Colt Technology Services implemented MEF’s Lifecycle Service Orchestration (LSO) Sonata APIs to automate network ordering. The two companies say it’s a telecom industry first — and it comes as MEF launched its pilot MEF 3.0 LSO Sonata certification program for inter-provider service automation along with an LSO Sonata software development kit (SDK) with APIs for inter-provider serviceability, product inventory, quoting, and ordering.
Industry first: AT&T and Colt Team Up on Deployment of MEF's LSO Sonata
AT&T and Colt Technology Services are laying claim to being the first carriers in the telecom industry to implement MEF's Lifecycle Service Orchestration (LSO) Sonata Application Programming Interfaces (APIs.)
AT&T and Colt Claim First Implementation of MEF’s LSO Sonata APIs to Automate Network Ordering
AT&T and Colt Technology Services have completed the first application of MEF’s LSO (Lifecycle Service Orchestration) Sonata APIs, allowing business customers to order services across multiple carriers virtually seamlessly.
MEF Launches MEF 3.0 LSO Sonata Certification Pilot for Inter-Provider Service Automation
MEF launched a pilot MEF 3.0 LSO Sonata certification program for inter-provider service automation, with an initial focus on automating ordering of MEF 3.0 Carrier Ethernet Access E-Line services. This certification enables buyers and sellers of wholesale MEF 3.0 services to validate that their APIs used for inter-provider business transactions comply with MEF standards.
MEF also introduced its LSO Sonata SDK (Software Development Kit) Release 3 with APIs for inter-provider serviceability, product inventory, quoting, and ordering.
MEF Member PR - AT&T and Colt are First to Implement MEF’s LSO Sonata APIs to Automate Network Ordering
London and Dallas, June 24, 2019 — AT&T and Colt Technology Services completed the first successful application of MEF’s LSO (Lifecycle Service Orchestration) Sonata APIs, allowing business customers to order services across multiple carriers virtually seamlessly. This success is a critical milestone in driving frictionless commerce across the global telecoms industry, removing manual steps, cutting cycle times, and minimizing handling errors.
Pascal Menezes, CTO, MEF - Q&A: The Industry’s First SD-WAN Service Standard
MEF recently announced the public availability of its final draft standard that, for the first time in the industry, defines an SD-WAN service and its various attributes. Telecom Review secured an interview with Pascal Menezes, CTO, MEF, to shed light on this groundbreaking initiative and discuss next steps for SD-WAN market development.
Ralph Santitoro, Fujitsu, discusses the details of the newly released MEF SD-WAN draft standard with Joan Engebretson of Telecompetitor, including how the standard covers several key areas, such as defining SD-WAN architecture and standardizing terminology.
MEF Pushes Out Final Draft of SD-WAN Services Standard
Fierce Telecom's Mike Robuck talks with Pascal Menezes, CTO, MEF, and Ralph Santitoro, Fujitsu, about the MEF announcement that it has put finishing touches on its SD-WAN services standard, and expects to have it published in mid-July.
Industry association MEF today released the draft of its SD-WAN service definition standard, which describes the requirements for an application-aware over-the-top WAN connectivity service. This standard will lay the groundwork for SD-WAN stakeholders to develop more robust and application-based SD-WAN services, explained Ralph Santitoro, Fujitsu, and MEF CTO Pascal Menezes during a discussion with Ali Longwell, SDxCentral.
Pascal Menezes, CTO, MEF discusses the goals and background of the final draft of its SD-WAN specification released May 28, as well as sharing details with Light Reading's Mitch Wagner about the standards, geared to help members and end users better understand each other and the intricacies of SD-WAN.
Charles Eckel explains to Ali Longwell, SDxCentral, why MEF is currently working on a SD-WAN standard that includes a number of service definitions and attributes. The group has been working on an SD-WAN standardization since at least 2017, and last October created a technical specification to define SD-WAN services and their attributes, which is expected to publish soon.
MEF Pushes the Carrier Industry Toward Digital Transformation
Dan Pitt, SVP, MEF, discusses with SDxCentral's Ali Longwell about MEF's work on their SD-WAN framework and LSO Sonata API. MEF has been working on an SD-WAN standardization since at least 2017, and last October created a technical specification to define specific SD-WAN services and their attributes.
MEF Lines up SD-WAN and LSO Sonata Standards for Q2 Release
Stan Hubbard, Communications & Research Director, MEF, discusses MEF's plans to have its SD-WAN and LSO Sonata API standards published late in the second quarter of this year, along with a slate of other activities on tap throughout the remainder of the year.
LSO Sonata represents an intercarrier API set that purports to enable a "groundbreaking" level of automation for inventory management, pricing/quoting, ordering and customer experience. MEF has been developing it since at least 2015.
IHS Markit: AI and Machine Learning Hold Promise for Digital Transformations
Research by IHS Markit's Michael Howard, senior research director of carrier networks, found that artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) will likely have the most impact on cloud services offered to customers and carrier network operations and management.
Exec Perspectives on Digital Transformation: AT&T, PCCW Global & Verizon (Part 2 of 2)
Author: Stan Hubbard, Communications & Research Director, MEF - In the second of a two-part series, executives from three MEF18 sponsors discuss industry trends and emerging technologies that are shaping the market and how they address their customers' needs. We spoke with Roman Pacewicz, Chief Product Officer, AT&T; Shahar Steiff, AVP New Technologies, PCCW Global; and Eric Cevis, SVP and Group President, Verizon Partner Solutions.
Exec Perspectives on Digital Transformation: AT&T, PCCW Global & Verizon (Part 1)
Author: Stan Hubbard, Communications & Research Director, MEF - In the first of a two-part series, executives from three MEF18 sponsors discuss industry trends and emerging technologies that are shaping the market and how they address their customers' needs. We spoke with Roman Pacewicz, Chief Product Officer, AT&T; Shahar Steiff, AVP New Technologies, PCCW Global; and Eric Cevis, SVP and Group President, Verizon Partner Solutions.
Ariel Efrati, Telco Systems - Telco Systems Announced 28% Growth in Its 46th Year of Operation – Nice Job!
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Telco Systems, is well known for creating Network Function Virtualization (NFV) two decades ago. Ariel Efrati, CEO at Telco Systems, goes on to tell Don Witt of The Channel Daily News, a TR publication, how Telco Systems has been a part of MEF from the beginning.
Gunnar Peters, Spectrum Enterprise - Spectrum Enterprise Demonstrates Policy Driven Networking at the Proof of Concept (POC) Sessions at MEF18
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Gunnar Peters, Spectrum Enterprise Sr. Director, Emerging Products goes on to say that their policy driven networking will provide their customers with visibility, flexibility and control. The application aware network, that is also capable of orchestrating services across a multi-carrier network, is leveraging the MEF Lifecycle Service Orchestration (LSO) 3.0.
Mark Gibson, AMDOCS - MEF Sonata Guides Interactive Ordering Between Carriers – A Must for Today’s Response to Customer Demand and Edge
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Mark Gibson, Director of Product management at AMDOCS and Application committee Co-Chair at the MEF Forum reviews key elements of the network with Don Witt of The Channel Daily News, a TR publication.
Kevin Vachon, COO, MEF – Establishing Standards for Service Providers to Sell Revenue Generating Services to Business for 17 Years
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - After the carrier ethernet standards were established, MEF focused on new service provider needs to service multi-national business. Businesses want services on demand through a portal. Not that easy outside of the US for the multi-national companies when there are hundreds of carriers around the world and multiple carriers are involved in a network solution.
Dan Pitt, SVP, MEF - Growing the Business of Members with MEF 3.0 & LSO
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Dan Pitt, SVP, MEF, discusses with Telecom Reseller's Don Witt how MEF 3.0 and LSO (Lifecycle Services Orchestration) will help service providers transform their business and grow revenues. MEF is focused on accelerating standardization and worldwide adoption of dynamic network services orchestrated across a global ecosystem of automated networks powered by LSO, SDN, and NFV.
Eric Watko, SES Networks - Satellite Service Provider Offering MEF Certified Service for Video & Networking
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - The satellite services allow carriers to reach targeted locations, the edge or remote locations with aggregation or point-to-point services. By implementing MEF standards, SES Networks, basically, is transitioning from being a niche closed network to an extension of a carrier’s access technology allowing them to get closer to the edge and to their users.
Daniel Bar Lev, MEF - Operators Using PoCs to Drive LSO APIs to Market Faster
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Daniel Bar-Lev, Director, Office of the CTO, MEF - Real-world experience using live networks in MEF Proofs of Concept (PoCs) is allowing operator members to shape technical specs faster. The same players involved in the PoCs are helping write the standards based on what they learned.
Roman Pacewicz, AT&T - Q&A: AT&T's Pacewicz Says More Work Needs to be Done on Standardizing VNFs
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Roman Pacewicz, AT&T - While there has been some progress in regards to standardizing virtual network functions (VNFs), they are still not living up to their full potential, according to AT&T's Roman Pacewicz.
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Pascal Menezes, CTO, MEF, discusses MEF's role in helping service providers along their transformational journey to on-demand services across automated networks. He shares insight into the groundbreaking releases of the industry's first SD-WAN service standard and LSO Sonata APIs for inter-provider service orchestration. He also highlights now MEF's professional certifciation programs can help address the skills gap that providers face as they transition to automated networks powered by LSO, SDN, and NFV.
Automation & the Transformational Journey Service providers worldwide are trying to understand how they apply automation, change their processes, and replace their legacy network with a transformational network powered by LSO, SDN, and NFV. MEF has a number of ways that it is helping service provider member companies along their transformational journey, including community collaboration on MEF 3.0 implementation projects and educational workshops focused on LSO APIs, virtualization, interaction with open source and other standards organizations, etc.
SD-WAN Service Standardization Pascal describes MEF's work on the industry's first SD-WAN service standard, which currently is in the draft phase with a target completion in 1Q19. This standard not only establishes a common approach to constructs and terminology, but it also includes performance objectives. "Really, it's all about application performance. How can an SD-WAN service meet the performance objectives by application."
MEF released a draft standard in order to ensure that member companies and industry players at large would have the opportunity to comment on such an important document. MEF already has received more than 800 comments and resolved 70% of these as of late October 2018.
"We describe attributes so that when we go to automation for APIs on SD-WAN you can use those attributes to put in the APIs in the data models. In fact, we also delivered out the data model in YANG right now for SD-WAN. So now we can build APIs out of it."
LSO Sonata APIs for Inter-Provider Service Orchestration LSO Sonata "is a very big deal." Service providers worldwide collaborate with each other to enable services to be delivered to off-network locations. "The workflow process today has been very manual. Even though a provider A has a customer, has retail, and has automated completely in their own network, when it hits someone else's network, they actually do a very manual process. They will actually find out if the address can be reached, what kind of services are available. They will try to find pricing for that, what kind of capabilities are there, capacity, all of that...just very manual workflow processes that take a very long time."
"What we've done with Sonata is we've automated all of that with two systems interacting, from business system to business system. And we've released 4 APIs today...We did it in a Developer Release." LSO Sonata draft technical standards included in the Developer Release relate to serviceability, product inventory, quoting, and ordering and cover business requirements, use cases, and attributes that serve as the basis for associated LSO Sonata API SDKs and data models.
Telecom Must Become Cloud-Like The whole telecom industry needs to become cloud-like. "It's all about instant delivery. Instant ability to have changes on the services. And everyone of our members are on that journey. That's the transformational journey that we talked about."
"This means we all have to be in the same boats, rowing in the same way. So we're working with a lot of SDOs and open source projects to work together collaboratively...If we're all working together, we can get there faster." MEF is working closely with The Linux Foundation/ONAP, TM Forum, and others.
Skills Transformation & MEF Professional Certification A recently completed joint MEF/Vertical Systems Group survey identified professional skills as the No. 1 challenge service providers face when making the transformational journey to dynamic services and automated networks. MEF addresses this challenge with SDN/NFV, Carrier Ethernet, and Network Foundations professional certification programs. "Traditional operations people will have to be very savvy in the DevOps world...."
The four LSO Sonata technical specifications related to serviceability, product inventory, quoting, and ordering cover business requirements, use cases, and attributes that serve as the basis for the associated LSO Sonata API SDKs and data models.
The four LSO Sonata technical specifications related to serviceability, product inventory, quoting, and ordering cover business requirements, use cases, and attributes that serve as the basis for the associated LSO Sonata API SDKs and data models.
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Brian Lillie, EVP & Chief Product Officer, Equinix, discusses what it takes to build a digital-ready infrastructure with SDN and NFV. He covers software-defined interconnection, virtualized services, Equinix's Cloud Exchange platform, and Equinix's strategy for evolving the network edge.
Equinix has 200 data centers in 52 metro areas in 24 countries.
Software-Defined Interconnection "Our vision is to take those assets underneath, that are very physical, and layer on top of that intelligent software and really make that capable and available to any customer that wants to leverage it - whether you are a small/medium business or a large global enterprise. We think that software-defined infrastructure is key to the future."
Virtual Services - Lowering Risk, Speeding Time to Market Equinix has found a number of use cases with its Cloud Exchange platform where a provider could offer NFV-based virtual services to test markets. "This is a way they can spin up what we call a performance hub. You can think about it as routing, load balancing, firewall, etc. You can spin that up, service chain those VNFs together. Connected to the Cloud Exchange, you can now access clouds in that remote market without deploying any capital."
Cloud Exchange Brian explains Equinix's Cloud Exchange, which is a software-defined swithcing fabric that allows buyers and sellers to efficiently connect to each other. They get a port on the fabric and can connect virtually to multiple players over the fabric. "For example, if you put a 10 Gig port on this switching fabric, you can set up a 1 Gig virtual circuit to Amazon, Google, Microsoft, a carrier, each other...."
Network Edge Evolution "This is a wonderful opportunity for the community to serve digital business." Equinix's strategy involves multiple steps: (1) help customers aggregate traffic at the edge and connect edge hubs into what essentially is an intelligent, distributed network; (2) directly connect to clouds at the edge; (3) deploy secuirty controls at the edge; and (4) integrate data at the edge, where it can be cached. "So now we're seeing customers build what we call data hubs" at the edge, closer to customers. It becomes a digital-ready, scalable architecture.
November 23, 2018
Daniel Bar Lev, MEF - MEF Presents 19 Proof of Concepts (PoCs) from Around the World
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Daniel Bar Lev, Director, Office of the CTO, for MEF provides a great visual and description of the Proof of Concepts set up at the MEF18 Forum.
Nan Chen, President, MEF - The Secret to MEF's Staying Power & 2019 Predictions
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Nan Chen, President, MEF, says that the organization's staying power is based on the early decision to focus on defining revenue-generating services and their attributes. Today's MEF 3.0 framework consists of 4 major elements (1) standardized, orchestrated services, (2) LSO (Lifecycle Service Orchestration) APIs to automate services across providers and over technology domains, (3) certification, and (4) community collaboration. Nan predicts that 2019 will be characterized by greater progress on LSO API-driven inter-provider service automation, demonstrations of federated networks, and an expansion of MEF 3.0 certified services.
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Dan Pitt, SVP, MEF, provides an update on MEF's approach to 5G, which includes delivering MEF services over 5G as well as supporting 5G services with MEF constructs, including LSO APIs.
MEF's 5G Focus "We're looking at things from a couple of different angles. One is how do we support MEF services over 5G, to 5G end points. And that's actually quite straight forward because our service definitions and frameworks are technology agnostic...The other is to support 5G services with some of the MEF constructs. That's where we are looking mostly at transport and some of the service interfaces and the attributes that we have on the APIs."
"What we like to do is to make it easy to adopt some new technology without disrupting the whole stack, without disrupting the processes for launching services, for modifying services, paying for services."
"We have work going on in the LSO Committee right now on the slicing project, which will determine what, if anything, we have to do to foster slicing in the WAN to support slicing in the RAN. And then we have work going on in the Applications Committee - do we change anything about the intent-based interfaces from the applications where we have new capabilities that can be exploited because of the 5G capabilities."
November 20, 2018
Pascal Menezes, CTO, MEF - Multiple Proof of Concept Demonstrations for MEF 3.0 and MEF Releases SD-WAN Specification at MEF18
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Pascal Menezes, Chief Technology Officer for MEF, reviews the MEF 3.0 framework with Don Witt of The Channel Daily News, a TR publication.
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Erin Dunne, Director of Research Services, Vertical Systems Group, shares her perspective on SD-WAN managed services, new MEF 3.0 LSO Sonata APIs, and how alignment on MEF 3.0 can speed service delivery and make life easier for service providers.
Why SD-WAN Managed Services Are Attractive "SD-WAN rollout has not been smooth...My metaphor for this is that it is almost like a self-service checkout line at the grocery store. Why would I do that? It's harder for me. As a customer, why would they do that? It's harder for them on the DYI aspect. So now you are seeing these early adopters of DYI SD-WANs say, 'Wow, that's not as easy as I thought it might be. Let's go for a managed service.' And here they come - here comes AT&T, Verizon, CenturyLink, and the folks like that. And they're picking up a lot of those early DYI adopters because it's not very simple."
MEF 3.0 LSO Sonata APIs What will be the impact of MEF 3.0 LSO Sonata APIs? "Every time a service provider can rollout a service or light up an end-user site quicker, that's quicker to revenue. We're seeing the provisioning times shrink slowly over time."
Value of MEF 3.0 Services Certification Looking forward, "if the retail and the wholesale service provider are both MEF 3.0 certified, it just moves faster."
November 16, 2018
Kevin Vachon, COO, MEF - Establishing Standards for Service Providers to Sell Revenue Generating Services to Business for 17 Years
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Kevin Vachon, Chief Operating Officer at MEF, discusses MEF and the MEF 18 conference with Don Witt of the Channel Daily News, a TR publication.
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Franck Morales, VP Marketing Connectivity Services, Orange Business Services, discusses how is company is addressing customers' digital transformation needs with its Flexible SD-WAN service and helping customers migrate to hybrid networking solutions. He also comments on Orange's support for MEF 3.0 SD-WAN and LSO API initiatives and the importance of this work in helping deliver high quality services to end-users.
Supporting MEF 3.0 SD-WAN and LSO API Initaitives "We are developing a wrap around SD-WAN with our Flexible SD-WAN solution. And one side of our Flexible SD-WAN is really to have multi-vendor expertise. We are working with several vendors to have the ability to have a northbound API to put that into our portal to offer a managed service or co-managed service to our customer. It is something that will be very useful for us." This would help Orange avoid have a portal related to each vendor.
Addressing Customers' Digital Transformation Needs Customers are asking for Orange to support digital transformation, including business use cases related to cloud transformation. "They are looking for solutions to bring them the right level of service to ensure high quality end-user experience for business critical applications located in the cloud. To make that happen, Flexible SD-WAN is really the solution we are bringing to the table with five pillars: SD-WAN multi-vendor expertise, native cloud connectivity, best-of-breed security, global services, and a future-proof solution.
Addressing Customer Challenges in Migrating to Hybrid Networking "We are providing hybrid solutions right now...We are seeing the evolution of the traffic pattern from MPLS technology to Internet technology, of course, Internet as a destination. One of the challenges that we have in doing this for our customers is to have this ability to provide them with Internet local service providers which are fully compatible with SD-WAN solutions and, as well, that we are able to manage their operational performance." Orange is leveraging its experience in sourcing Ethernet links for its MPLS service in order to select local ISPs.
Perspective on MEF's Conference "What I'm seeing is - and it's quite something important - is MEF has really shfited within the technology area and is really embracing all of the evolution of this huge demand towards digital transformation. So, for us, it is important to be here, to see how the industry is evolving. The opportunity we have with LSO, with APIs, with all of these things, is of great value to us in order to be able to deliver the right level of services for our customers.
5G Franck says that he believes 5G "will modify quite a lot the way we are providing local loop" services. While Orange has been deploying fiber to the home, he sees 5G as potentially providing "huge capacity" in the local loop for first deployments, backup lines, and support for forecasted 15 - 20% annual growth in local traffic demand.
November 16, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - The mood at last month's MEF18 event in Los Angeles was surprisingly upbeat when you consider this event caters to the business services segment of the telecom industry and the news from that sector hasn't been all that rosy of late.
There was also generally a feeling that MEF itself is on the right track, focusing on services and making those work both inter-carrier and intra-carrier, defining applications programming interfaces that can be widely used and producing some industry standard definitions around SD-WAN. The large number of multi-carrier proofs of concept were a clear indication of how active network operators have been in putting the MEF work to work.
November 15, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov – Roman Pacewicz, Chief Product Officer, AT&T, discusses enterprise adoption of SD-WAN, customer interest in hybrid networking solutions, and the important role of MEF in providing a framework and standards that will enable service providers to orchestrate dynamic services across each other’s networks.
SD-WAN & Hybrid Networking "The anchor of our value proposition is the virtualized FlexWare platform, and on top of that platform we are able to configure the various VNFs in software to meet the customer’s needs.” As of September, AT&T has over 28,000 SD-WAN sites that it is implementing on behalf of clients.
“Most of our customers are looking for hybrid solutions.” They are first trying to determine the proper underlay network for their set of sites, and then trying to determine what type of SD-WAN architecture to overlay on top of that. SD-WAN is leading customers to think about the network more broadly. “When you implement an SD-WAN network, you are looking at application flows, so a customer now has to think about networking in a different dimension. They have to think about if from all of those application flows and how those applications should be handled.”
MEF 3.0 Global Services Framework & Orchestration of Inter-Carrier Services “I think MEF plays a really critical role in the industry and kind of a critical role for AT&T from the perspective that AT&T and no carrier really has infrastructure everywhere around the world. Yet, many of us serve customers all around the world. So we rely on partners to provide connectivity in different parts of the globe. And the process for many years has been very, very cumbersome. What MEF is doing is providing order and standardization and driving out some of the friction that exists in the current way that we lever one another for incremental services we may need in country A or country B. So that standardization enables us to more efficiently order services, provision services. It has tremendous value not only to the carrier, to AT&T, but to our customers going forward.”
“All of our customers are moving to digital business models. And as they move to digital business models, they expect more flexibility from the network. They need to be able to control the network, increase bandwidth, decrease bandwidth, reconfigure the network…we really need to automate a lot of the provisioning and orchestration of services holistically. And so if a customer wants to increase the bandwidth – even if that bandwidth is provided ultimately by a third party, another carrier – we need to be able to effectively provision that service quickly and allow the customer to reconfigure the service wherever they may be. That’s really where standards come into play and are so critical for our industry…services need to become more intelligent, more dynamic and flexible, and without standards that would not be possible. Again, that’s where MEF comes in. That’s the reason why they are so critical to us.”
November 14, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov – John-Paul Hemingway, CEO, SES Networks, discusses the need for an integrated approach to end-to-end service orchestration across terrestrial and satellite networks. He explains why SES became the first satellite provider in the world to receive MEF Carrier Ethernet 2.0 certification and highlights the importance of aligning with MEF 3.0 standards in order to orchestrate dynamic services across a global ecosystem of automated networks.
Common Approach to Service Orchestration "If you are really going to connect everyone that we think needs connecting, you're going to have to orchestrate in the same way, have the same standards delivered across terrestrial and satellite seamlessly."
"We started with standardization - which is the MEF 2.0 certification, and that helps people trust what they're delivering - but if we really want to react to people wanting cloud connectivity on-demand, or we want to be able to flex bandwidth up and down for 4G and certainly for 5G in the future, we have to react to the same systems that control terrestrial networks as well as seamlessly into satellite systems. So, we need to make sure we've got the right control engines, we've go the right APIs exposed, and ultimately we take part in the ecosystems we see here so that when we're rolling out mobile edge compute and we want to deliver a network function down to be hosted at the edge compute node it shouldn't matter that is over satellite. We can still spin up the capacity, guarantee it for some period of time, launch the NFV down to the mobile edge compute, and then spin down the capacity...It should work just like it's over fiber."
MEF CE 2.0 Certification SES Networks was the first satellite service provider in the world to receive MEF 2.0 Carrier Ethernet certification. JP explains that the company pursued certification as part of its transition from being a capacity provider to becoming a fully managed service provider. "When you provide fully managed services, people want to trust they do what you say they'll do. So having something that says - even though it's over satellite - you should think about it as any part of your network. So our telco customers who want to rollout a global network - they've got their on-net services which are MEF certified - and they've go to go off-net by partnering with us. The entire end-to-end service is now MEF certified. That's a huge deal and a big, big differentiator for us in the market."
"If they want to extend from Adelaide to one of the islands off Australia - which we do with Telstra, for example - they just say 'If it's MEF, it's going to work. Let's deploy it.'"
Another example is TIM Brasil, which is using the CE 2.0 certified service from SES Networks to underpin the LTE backhaul performance where they do not have fiber deployed.
MEF 3.0 Going Forward SES is tracking MEF 3.0 closely. "When you look at MEF, it evolved beyond 'it is Carrier Ethernet that is going to be trusted,' and it is adding things like LSO to ensure that we can also control and orchestrate circuits down the line, we have to evolve with that as well. So we're certainly working closely with MEF right to see when does it make sense to get our services MEF 3.0 certified. And we're certainly involved in things like LSO and in other forums like ONAP to make sure that we can be part of that control system."
November 14, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov – Jean-Claude Geha, SVP, International Technology & Services Delivery, DT, discusses progress with DT’s cloud-centric Pan-European Network, DT’s business transformation, the importance of standards, and the role that MEF has to play in making life easier for service providers.
Pan-Net Pan-Net is “very close” to finishing its infrastructure in all 12 countries. Pan-Net has invested heavily in automation and is now focused on putting network functions and multivendor applications on top.
DT’s Transformation DT has been going through a major transformation in mindset and in the skill sets of its employees in order to become more “cloud-native.” DT has focused on training and bring a lot of engineers up to speed on the latest technologies and ways of working, and has hired a lot of people from the market with a cloud-native mindset.
MEF 3.0 “This industry, this whole area, lacks standardization, lacks automation. And MEF is doing a lot in that regard. There’s quite a bit of use for what MEF is doing for us to apply and in order to make our life easier when it comes to interfaces, when it comes to onboarding, lifecycle management. It’s important to use more or less the same APIs to be more agile and to really get the real benefit of cloudification, which is time to market, better customer experience, and efficiency.”
What DT Needs from the Industry “We would like to see all suppliers to think cloud-native when dealing with us….And we would like to see more knowledge sharing across the peers in the industry and more standardization…standardization is important to enable a much better pace of cloudification.”
November 13, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov – Marc Halbfinger, CEO, PCCW Global -- recently recognized as the Industry Executive of the Year by MEF - notes that as network services become more dynamic, service providers must change their approach to commercial settlement of inter-provider services. He elaborates on the need for inter-provider service automation, the purpose of PCCW Global's MEF18 Blockchain PoC, and collaboration between the Global Leaders Forum (GLF) and MEF related to automated commercial settlement.
Orchestrating Dynamic Services Across Providers "The industry recognizes that automation on the front end of services is going to require a good amount more of automation on the back end. It's one thing to be very creative in what you are going to be doing downstream in your own network with your own customer. The moment you want those services though to be ubiquitous and globally available, you need to ensure that there is a stream of service provider relationships at the back end that can also facilitate the same. And, therefore, while it might be exciting to look at the front end, it's absolutely necessary to be focusing on back end automation and to assure that service providers can interoperate among themselves not just technically but also commercially."
MEF18 Blockchain PoC PCCW participated in a MEF18 Proof of Concept demonstration titled "MEF 3.0 LSO Federated Inter-carrier Data-on-demand Services Through Automated Discovery and Blockchain Settlement." Other companies included Sparkle, Tata Communications, SingTel, CBCcom, Infonas, Liquid Telecom, Clear, and Cataworx.
"Blockchain is a technology which is facilitating automation. First and foremost, we're looking at how we can take contracts between and among different service providers in a common ecosystem and code those contracts so that the parameters for settlement are clear and that the parameters for dispute are framed to allow for automated settlement."
Six or seven service providers within the Global Leaders Forum initially engaged in a multi-carrier PoC focused using Blockchain for settlement of voice services. And the MEF18 PoC focused on how to apply Blockhain to settlement of data services on an on-demand basis. "Once that framework is created, I think we'll be able to get involved in delivering more dynamic, more creative services into the automated settlement framework."
Global Leaders Forum (GLF) & MEF Collaboration The timeframe for creation of the automated settlement framework is "immediate." "In order for the Blockchain to be successful at the industry level, there's going to have to be a governance level that will be put in place." The GLF recently agreed on work to establish a governance model at the wholesale layer of the industry, and more news is expected on this within the next couple of months.
"MEF has been very instrumental through its commercial attributes sub-committee in working with us on what the inter-connect parameters will look like that will be facilitated by the governance framework, particularly around data services...MEF and GLF have been working closely together in creating new service frameworks focusing on the evolution of bandwidth on demand as a parameter, assuring that the API set that was announced this morning by MEF around LSO would also be driven toward some sort of commercial endorsement by the commercial leaders at the GLF."
"We've been supporting MEF from Day 1. We believe quite strongly in everything that MEF has been trying to do and in the manner in which it has evolved. We also continue to try and push from inside and from outside to get MEF to continue to focus not just on the technical interfaces but the commercial interfaces where we think that the go hand-in-hand."
November 13, 2018
Mirko Voltolini, Colt - Service Automation & On-Demand Services
Mirko Voltolini, Global Head of Network on Demand, Colt, talks about how the operator has automated the service delivery aspect of its Ethernet services but is still working on the significant challenge of automating service assurance, including closed loop automation and taking automatic actions to improve customer experience. Colt plans to launch Ethernet access on-demand by the end of 2018 and to also introduce an on-demand optical transport / Layer 1 service worldwide after that.
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Josh Goodell, VP Edge Solutions, AT&T, shares his perspective on several hot industry topics, including the rise of SD-WAN services, orchestration of dynamic services across federated networks, and the paradigm shift associated with 5G.
SD-WAN “2018 has been the year of SD-WAN. I mean it’s really taken off…We have 28,000 contracted end points, which is absolutely astounding, and we’re deploying services all over the globe.”
“The hype cycle is always interesting. And I’m a believer in this technology. I think this technology is paradigm shifting technology. But nothing is as simple as some lead to believe. When you think about actually deploying in hybrid environments that have lots of different hardware and applications running, it’s complex…our play is to very much have a platform that can be deployed across the globe in 200+ countries, and that alone brings a tremendous amount of complexity. And I think that’s one of the areas that AT&T is able to differentiate. Being able to deliver that consistently…we can do it, but it’s not easy.”
MEF & SD-WAN “I’ve found MEF to be very pragmatic. It brings together this interesting community of network providers, managed service providers, vendors, and really more software-centric and network-centric folks with different heritages. And they bring these groups together and then drive towards definition for solving real problems. And I think that SD-WAN is ripe for that. And I think that MEF is going to do some interesting work in truly driving definition around what a customer can expect from an SD-WAN solution…And then I think there will be some really interesting work done on the APIs and standardizing around the APIs for SD-WAN. And I think over time what we’ll see is that will unlock the next wave of innovative capabilities, whether that’s federation of different types of networks or whether that’s tighter linking of the underlay and overlay networks. I think that will evolve into something that we probably haven’t even conceptualized yet.”
Federated Networks Powered by LSO APIs “Two years ago, we talked about this dynamic of really creating federated networks. And because we had created software defined networks within AT&T, we felt the natural extension of that is to allow customers to consume those types of networks outside of our footprint. It just makes sense, right? And so that challenge was put out there, and then a year later – so, last year - many of the participants within MEF…came together and actually demonstrated a Proof of Concept around federated networks and showed what was possible. And what was so amazing is having that be a part of MEF, MEF was able to define what that framework would be in a standard approach. And, now, looking forward, we’re actually going to be delivering a commercial service with multiple carriers – I can’t announce which ones – but doing exactly what we talked about two years ago. And it will be a framework that I’m sure others will use as well. So it’s really exciting, and I think it represents why MEF is a powerful organization. It drives toward pragmatic solutions to problems that are industry-wide.”
5G On 5G, “I’m a big believer in that it is not just one technology that changes the paradigm…I that that 5G is one of those ingredients that is absolutely going to change the game for the industry…5G is going to be interesting from a couple of different perspectives. One, it will be able to support extreme density of end points…and the raw throughput is a step function advance as well….I think it is going to be very disruptive.”
November 12, 2018
Erin Dunne, Vertical Systems Group - Migration to Dynamic Services is Progressing, But Takes Time
Erin Dunne, Director of Research Services, Vertical Systems Group, shares her perspective on the transition to dynamic services liked those envisioned within the MEF 3.0 global services framework. Erin shares her candid perspective that industry players are making progress in shifting from static to dynamic services -- with the help of conferences like MEF18 and standards like the ones MEF is working on -- "but this is going to be a long road."
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Andrew Dugan, CTO (former SVP Technology Planning & Network Architecture), CenturyLink discusses his company's move toward an "as-a-service" model to support enterprise use of multiple cloud platforms. Andrew comments on CenturyLink's focus on dynamic services, MEF 3.0 and inter-provider dynamic services, SD-WAN, and preparing for the data deluge. He also shares his impression of the MEF18 networking event.
Focus on Dynamic Services "We're in the middle of adapting to the way our customers want to consume networking services. Our customers are changing more to have a hybrid IT environment, which means they are using the cloud more; they're using 3rd party data centers more. Their network needs are changing as a result of that. The flexibility and agility that they have in the cloud -- and the ability to active new capabilities there on-demand -- is translating into a changing way that they want to consume network. So, we're building more on-demand networking services as a result, and enabling our customers to turn up network services within minutes rather than the normal 30, 60, 90 days that it takes to turn up network services."
CenturyLink's recently launched Cloud Connect Dynamic Connections service, for example, allows customers to set up an Ethernet connection between a UNI on their private network to the Amazon cloud within minutes using their Amazon cloud credentials. CenturyLink plans to offer this service with other cloud providers like Google, Azure, IBM, and Oracle.
MEF 3.0 & Inter-Carrier Dynamic Services "We're doing a lot of work with MEF in terms of standards. We've got a number of Proofs of Concept here at the MEF conference. So, we're very active in the definition of those APIs. We do expect that they will help us down the road in terms of establishing carrier-to-carrier communications to enable us to establish our dynamic connectivity services to the connectivity services of other service providers...The cloud providers haven't yet adopted them. We hope that they will...If we could have that dynamic connectivity extended into other carriers that would allow us to do our dynamic services much more broadly than we can today."
SD-WAN Dugan says that CenturyLink has seen "a significant pickup in SD-WAN activity over the last year." The company has doubled its internal throughput to turn up services and added more SD-WAN hubs as it scales to meet SD-WAN demands.
Preparing for Data Deluge Dugan emphasizes that service providers need to be ready to scale significantly to meet the coming onslaught of data as edge capacity and edge connectivity grows. In addition, they need to be prepared to "support the dynamic requirements" of edge data feeds.
Impression of MEF18 Event "It's been great...The participation by the industry is fantastic. Equipment providers, software providers, service providers all being here. It's a great forum for people to come together to talk about standardization and what's happening with SD-WAN and virtual services."
Save the date for MEF19, 18-22 November 2019, JW Marriott, LA LIVE, Los Angeles.
November 09, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Dan Pitt, SVP, MEF, shares that MEF's release of LSO Sonata APIs in the form of both draft specifications and SDKs (Software Development Kits) is an illustration of a radical transformation in MEF's approach to delivering industry standards.
"This notion that we can issue a spec that is not perfect, but iterate on it with the speed of software, that's transformational for us...We have really developed the first industry instance of a DevOps approach to standards development."
November 09, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Nav Chander, Senior Director, Service & Cloud Provider Marketing, Silver Peak, shares that his company is proud to support and be involved in MEF's effort to standardize SD-WAN services.
Right now, "Silver Peak is seeing a real, dramatic shift in the market. A lot of customers are looking more beyond basic SD-WAN to sort of that next-generation...We think that SD-WAN is going to become a platform for advanced services - wired services and wireless services, 4G and 5G - and really a merge of IT transformation and network transformation. So, SD-WAN is more than just another VNF."
November 09, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Roopa Honnachari, Industry Director, Business Communications Services & Cloud Computing, ICT, Frost & Sullivan, shares that she believes MEF's effort to standardize SD-WAN services is "very important for the SD-WAN market."
"Since SD-WAN acts as an enabler for most of the network services and other enterprise services, it is important to have standardized definitions...so that everybody is working in the same format."
"The underlying networks and the dynamicity of these networks are very, very important. I think the standardization and use of MEF 3.0 specifications kind of brings everything together and ensures that they are all on the same platform and there's interoperability."
November 09, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Kevin Sheehan, CTO of Ciena Americas discusses lessons learned on key three industry trends and how 5G is accelerating the move of network bandwidth from the core to the edge. Kevin scores industry progress on (1) the need to do more with less, (2) the need for speed, and (3) the need for seamless connectivity.
Need to Do More for Less "One of the practical lessons learned over the last three years is that with NFV it is actually more for more. Spend more to get more, at least initially. You have often to invest in new people or new training for your people."
"You're spending more from both a capex standpoint an an opex standpoint, but you do get a more powerful infrastructure."
Ciena Adaptive Networking "With adaptive networking,, what we're talking about is forming a closed loop of automation. We start out with connect - basically the networking infrastucture, ideally some of the next generation networking infrastructure that has very advanced telemetry...Then we add some analytics, Big Data analytics....You're able to now grab that advanced telemetry and start to analyze it, and then we pass it forward into automation engine like our Blue Planet MDSO (Multi Domain Service Orchestrator), where we act."
Adaptive IP & 5G "Adaptive IP - the concept is that we're developing IP functionality in a product that is specialized for certain applications in a network...one of those applications is the onset of 5G...Two things are going to happen: you'll have many more cell sites, and us as users, with our 5G devices, will have more simultaneous connectivity to these cell sites. So what ends up happening is that you need a lot more routing capability at all of these sites...."
November 09, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Adam Saenger, VP Networking Solutions, CenturyLink, shares about the benefits of service and technology innovators coming together to accelerate transformation of the way that enterprises connect and communicate. New technologies like SD-WAN, for example, are being used in customers' hybrid networks that incorporate both public and private networking solutions.
Adam notes hard work is being done to bring together the orchestration of communications, network, and business applications "so that customers can move at the speed of enterprise vs. moving at the speed of telecom."
CenturyLink has been focused heavily on dynamic services. In the past 12 months, CenturyLink has introduced such capabilities as (1) dynamic VLAN management that helps customers manage resources into cloud environments, (2) global availability of SD-WAN, (3) global hybrid networking connectivity, and (4) dynamic connections that allow customers to spin up new connections on-demand.
November 08, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Yogen Patel, Head of Products & Solutions Marketing, Amdocs Open Network, discusses the company's Service Driven Network vision. This involves a set of capabilities that sit between the core network and the business support layers above that allow service providers to flexibly and easily create and launch new services and to assure these services within the full service context.
Service providers do this by using dynamic, programmable network and network-as-a-service capabilities, along with data-driven intelligence and network operation solutions. "This is going to become increasingly critical as we look forward to 5G, which is all around dynamic, expanded, distributed networks, heterogenous capabilities."
"At the end of the day, the network has to be based on driving itself and reacting to service intent and service priorities."
November 08, 2018
Eric Watko, SES Networks - Seamless Connectivity Across Satellite & Terrestrial Networks
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Eric Watko, Executive VP of Product Marketing & Strategy, SES Networks, shares his company's vision of partnering with carriers to deliver dynamic, seamless connectivity across satellite and terrestrial networks. A global satellite provider, SES Networks already offers a MEF Carrier Ethernet 2.0 certified service over its MEO fleet.
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Pascal Menezes, CTO, MEF, shares highlights on the major progress MEF has made over the past year in delivering on the promise of the MEF 3.0 Global Services Framework. He notes significant strides across all key elements of the framework, including: standardized services (Optical Transport, Carrier Ethernet, IP, and SD-WAN); LSO (Lifecycle Service Orchestration) APIs; certification; and community activities.
Dozens of companies and industry organizations have been involved in initiatives to accelerate adoption of MEF 3.0 services that provide an on-demand, cloud-centric experience with unprecedented user- and application-directed control over network resources and service capabilities.
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Daniele Mancuso, VP ICT Engineering, Sparkle, shares his perspective on hot topics covered at MEF's annual global networking event, which is playing a transformational role in the industry by driving standardization and leapfrogging technological innovations.
SD-WAN "It looks like SD-WAN is the candidate technology to bring us to the future...We are talking about a new generation of managed services that will be enabled by SD-WAN technology - essentially virtualized overlay technology that will allow enterprises to interconnect branch offices as well as public cloud without the need of truck rolls, and in a matter of seconds adjust connecting with service providers either via service portals - or better - via API."
LSO (Lifecycle Service Orchestration) APIs "APIs are the main bread and butter of MEF. We are really doing a great job in standardization of both Cantata and Sonata for the east-west [orchestration between providers] and for the interface with the customer."
Network Cloudification "We are moving from what was the initial trend of disaggregating network functions from their underlying hardware...to the next step that is rewriting VNFs from standard virtual machines...to a more disaggregated network function that be split in microservices, each of which will be auto-consistent, each of which will be stateless, and therefore will be cloud-native. This will allow a VNF to be decomposed and to run in several locations. Part of it will be running in customer premises equipment. Part of it will be running in edge or core data centers. Part of it can run in public cloud. This is the great news! Finally, a service provider is cloudyfing its own network and the services exposed to enterprises that are addressing today the multicloud environment and multicloud experience."
SDN & Intent-Based Networking "All of this, of course, is enabled by the strong foundation of SDN." The next step in SDN evolution is intent-based networking. "Intent-based networks will be a new generation of networks that will be automated by default and will be able to interact either with the end-user or the operator with almost natural language. The same today we interact with Siri or with Alexa we will interact with our network."
November 08, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Ariel Efrati, CEO, Telco Systems, shares an update on his company's Carrier Ethernet & NFV business, including (1) the introduction of a 100GE demarcation/aggregation device, (2) 28% year/year growth in shipment of MEF CE 2.0 certified devices, and (3) the introduction of its new NFVTime solution.
Airel states, "We have a lot of Proof of Concepts and a lot of trials going on with NFV. I believe 2019 is going to be very, very big in NFV deployments - not just Tier 1s, also Tier 2 and 3s. These are exciting times because I believe that the communications market is reinventing itself, [becoming] more software-oriented, more agile in nature, and very fast to deploy services."
November 08, 2018
Satya Parimi, Group VP, Data Products, Spectrum Enterprise, says his employer will be launching its generally available managed SD-WAN service within the next several weeks. He discusses how recent field trials with customers revealed layers of complexity in the technology, operations and service delivery, and the customer experience involved with SD-WAN. That's why Spectrum Enterprise is going with a "white glove" fully managed service.
SD-WAN “On the technology side, it’s no different than what you’re hearing from everybody else. It’s not plug-and-play. The overlay and the underlay don’t seamlessly work together. You have to do some engineering work up front. Self installs was another very interesting thing. It’s not as easy as people think it is…For launch…based on those learnings, we’ve decided to have fully white glove onboarding with installation in footprint and out of footprint.”
“From a service delivery perspective, we learned that you have to orchestrate and automate service delivery end-to-end. Otherwise it’s not scalable and it’s hard to do service assurance.”
“And the biggest learning has been from a client perspective – people saying `Ok, I get SD-WAN. I understand the functionality. What is the net incremental new thing I’m getting outside of saving money on access, for example? You’re giving me a lot of complexity. You’re moving a lot of feature functionality and flexibility from the network to me. Do I need to have this complexity? Can it be a managed service?’”
Parimi emphasized that Spectrum Enterprise wants to simplify the experience for customers and ensure that they are not put off by the complexity that comes with SD-WAN.
MEF 3.0 What are Parimi’s expectations for MEF 3.0? “CE 2.0 was a great win for Charter and Spectrum Enterprise because we were, very early on, big proponents of standardization…standardization drives a lot quicker uptake of service…enterprises feel comfortable that they’re buying something that’s an industry standard. And we’re hoping with 3.0 and the 3.0 APIs for cross-provider connectivity, but, more importantly, the standardization efforts [for example, with SD-WAN]…I think that will give a lot of enterprises more comfort. They’re buying into something that is industry standard and that’s there to stay and that’s not going to change. So, 3.0 helps us from that perspective. And, certification, we’re a big proponent of getting people certified.”
Looking Forward - SDN/NFV “There’s a lot of talk about SD-WAN, but I think the bigger conversation needs to be around SDN/NFV. SD-WAN is one service. So, as we look at SD-WAN service and how we deliver it, we’re looking to do it from an SDN/NFV platform. So, we’re going to make SD-WAN as one of the services on that platform. Security is also going to be delivered from that platform. And we plan to use that platform to deliver other existing services that we have like Internet and Ethernet.”
“One of the things we are looking at is how do we leverage SDN/NFV to deliver compelling services to the end customer…We’re hearing a lot from enterprises saying, ‘Yes, SDN/NFV is really interesting technology, but what is it giving me incrementally. You’re selling me the same services that I already have. You’re just delivering it better, differently, or faster. What are the incremental benefits and value that you can show to me?’…I think unless we do that, there’s not going to be a big shift in moving to some of these new, dynamic services.”
MEF18 PoC & Intent-Based Networking In a MEF18 PoC, Spectrum Enterprise, TELUS, Nokia, and Sandvine showed how application-aware, policy-based networks that can adjust in real-time to what is going on with an application. “That’s a value,” noted Parimi. “If you can get to an intent-based client experience where networks are, in an automated and autonomous way, reacting to what’s happening in the network, that’s another value to the end customer.”
November 06, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Gal Hochberg, Founder & CEO, Clear Blockchain Technologies provides a quick summary of an award-winning MEF 18 Proof of Concept demonstration titled: MEF 3.0 LSO Federated Inter-carrier Data-on-demand Services Through Automated Discovery and Blockchain Settlement. Participating companies included PCCW Global, Sparkle, Tata Communications, SingTel, CBCcom, Infonas, Liquid Telecom, Clear, and Cataworx.
Save the date for MEF19, 18-22 November 2019, JW Marriott, LA LIVE, Los Angeles.
November 06, 2018
MEF18, 29 Oct - 2 Nov - Brendan Gunn, Director of Global Networks, Verizon Partner Solutions, shares his view on what it takes to build a global ecosystem of networks supporting agile, assured services aligned with the MEF 3.0 framework. As Brendan notes, inter-provider service orchestration "doesn't happen unless there is tremendous trust across the partner organizations. This is really hard to enable in a pure commercial environment. Fortunately, we have organizations like MEF that bring communities of interest together where we can build out specifications and we can develop that level of trust."
"Going into next year, we've focused on taking a lot of the lessons learned from Proof of Concepts...and convert them into partner solutions...What we've really be doing is focusing on the customer journey, the customer experience and really working back from the vision of what that experience should be into the various solutions. We get there by leveraging a lot of the different tool sets that we see through MEF 55 and MEF 3.0 - Sonata, Interlude, etc. So you'll see some really nifty things from us launching here from a customer experience perspective in the 4th quarter and a lot of launches going into 2019 as well."
Save the date for MEF19, 18-22 November 2019, JW Marriott, LA LIVE, Los Angeles.
November 06, 2018
Special Report—The Top 25 Movers and Shakers in the Telecom Industry
Fierce Telecom has named 6 MEF board members or officers in its list of 25 top movers and shakers in the telecom industry:
Shawn Hakl, SVP Business Products, Verizon
Aamir Hussain, former Exec VP & CTO, CenturyLInk
Pascal Menezes, CTO, MEF
Kevin O'Toole, SVP Product Management, Comcast Business
Mirko Voltolini, Head of Network on Demand, Colt Technology Services
Ralph Santitoro, Head of SDN/NFV/SD-WAN Services, Fujitsu Network Communications