Software Solutions for NFV and SDN Native - Mavenir

Blog

Software Solutions for NFV and SDN Native

30 January 2019

AUTHORED BY: John Baker

The Quest for New Network Economics

The launch and migration towards NFV signify a recognition among leading network operators that their legacy business models are not sustainable and that they need to change their cost-per-bit assumptions and revenue generation capabilities. Five years on, the quest for new network economics is more urgent as the costs of keeping up with traffic demand outpaces service revenue growth. Wireless operators have been let down by their traditional suppliers whose legacy business models are not aligned with their goals.

This looming market reality is one catalyst for implementing Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) and Software-Defined Networking (SDN).

To prosper in the 5G era, wireless operators must build cost-efficient, flexible, and agile networks to deliver innovative services and grow the top and bottom lines. The new model for wireless network economics is founded on dramatic savings in capital and operating expenditures through the deployment of distributed cloud-native architectures that foster new service models, standard open interfaces and rapid innovation – each of which is imminently achievable. The technology shift marks a distinct departure from a traditional telco mindset to web-scale deployments and speeds, including fundamental changes in how operators engage with suppliers as they adopt new and innovative software licensing models.

The Need for NFV and SDN-Cloud Native Software

The vision for Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) was established by 13 of the world’s largest telecom network operators in a white paper published in 2012. It proposed a radical transformation in the way that networks are built, and services are delivered to achieve cost savings in capex and opex as well as accelerate service development and time to market.

Virtualization enables CSPs to deploy software-based network functions on general-purpose hardware, rather than install proprietary appliances every time they need a new network function, service or application. As originally envisioned, the benefits of NFV all boil down to cost savings, deployment flexibility and service agility.

While substantive progress has been made in a relatively short time, the promised cost savings and agility have not yet materialized for most CSPs. In a recent Heavy Reading survey that tracked virtualization deployments, 64% of the CSPs surveyed said they did not expect capex related to virtualization to level off or decline until 2020 or later, and most CSPs said they expected to see opex savings in the next three to five years.

There are many reasons for NFV’s as-yet unfulfilled promise: inadequate support for automation, complex integration with legacy systems, immature Management and Orchestration (MANO) systems, not enough incorporation of SDN programmability principles, just to name a few. The fundamental issue is that for the most part, the Virtual Network Functions (VNFs) themselves are not natively designed for high-performance cloud environments. Early VNFs were simply proprietary software that previously ran on customized appliances. The software wasn’t rearchitected for virtualized environments.

Today, most VNFs are built upon existing software code and modified to run in virtual machines (VMs) on general-purpose hardware. But VMs have serious limitations in terms of scalability and resource utilization. VNFs that are designed for cloud environments overcome the operational challenges of VMs, which require significant manual intervention. Cloud-native software design leverages containerization, stateless processing, and microservices to create VNFs that use compute resources efficiently and reliably.

“Rather than just scaling up or down, native VNFs scale out to spread the capacity load across available compute resources.” – John Baker

Native VNFs allow dynamic service chaining and can be instantiated rapidly, reducing the time it takes to launch new services and applications. Native VNFs achieve the flexibility, scalability and operational efficiency promised by NFV. Ultimately NFV will transform mobile networks to achieve web-scale, full-service automation and enable Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) offerings. The result will be programmable mobile networks that leverage telemetry and analytics, automatically scale and self-heal, as well as deliver the highest service assurance.

These capabilities can change the economic equation for mobile operators, significantly lowering the overall cost-per-bit and leveling the playing field to compete with web-scale cloud rivals Facebook, Amazon, Netflix, and Google (FANG).

John Baker
John BakerClick for Bio
Senior Vice President of Business Development

John is a veteran of the mobile industry, board member for 5G Americas, and sought-after industry speaker, John Baker leads the Business Development team at Mavenir, intent on disrupting the market by transforming operator network economics.

A visionary and driving force behind Mavenir’s business strategy, John is at the forefront of the company’s drive to change operator views on wireless infrastructure deployment—promoting a software-focused approach to innovation, with no ties to supporting legacy hardware.

Prior to joining Mavenir, John held senior positions with leading wireless companies, including:

• GM Mobility Infrastructure at Spirent Communications
• VP & GM Network Solutions at CommScope
• VP & GM Base Stations at Nokia
• VP of Technology and Chief Technology Officer at Pacific Bell Mobile Services

John also contributed significantly in the development of the GSM standards. He graduated with an Honors Degree in Electrical Electronic Engineering from Loughborough University in Leicestershire, UK. John is frequently quoted in major wireless industry publications including Wireless Week, Fierce Wireless, Light Reading, SDX Central, RCR Wireless and Mobile World Live.

Related Content

"We selected Mavenir as a Trusted Provider to ensure that we would have a seamless path to 5G Core while decreasing total cost of ownership,” said Jason Guzzo, General Manager, HVW.

Read more >

This common and harmonized solution is designed to significantly reduce existing footprint, provide network simplification, and therefore achieve significant cost savings for both operators.

Read more >

Stéphane Téral, Technology Telecommunications Fellow at IHS Markit recently attended Mavenir’s Analyst Event on November 5 in Dallas. Many elements are coming together to put Mavenir in the limelight…

Read more >

View All

"We selected Mavenir as a Trusted Provider to ensure that we would have a seamless path to 5G Core while decreasing total cost of ownership,” said Jason Guzzo, General Manager, HVW.

Read more >

This common and harmonized solution is designed to significantly reduce existing footprint, provide network simplification, and therefore achieve significant cost savings for both operators.

Read more >

SANTA CLARA, CA., and RICHARDSON, TX, June 05, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Big Switch Networks®, the Cloud First Networking Company, today announced it has entered into an OEM agreement...

Read more >

View All

Operators have traditionally sourced proprietary equipment for the baseband unit of the radio access network (RAN) from vendors such as Nokia and Ericsson. But Mavenir is challenging these...

Read more >

On the Telecom Infra Project’s third birthday, Deutsche Telekom’s Axel Clauberg says the collaborative group is celebrating the move of mobile network technologies out of the research phase...

Read more >

Even before the current security backlash against the Chinese vendor, BT had decided it did not want the company’s technology anywhere near its “core,” the central part of...

Read more >

View All

Stéphane Téral, Technology Telecommunications Fellow at IHS Markit recently attended Mavenir’s Analyst Event on November 5 in Dallas. Many elements are coming together to put Mavenir in the limelight…

Read more >

Salman Zahid, Director, Systems Engineering, Big Switch Networks A revolution is underway. Nearly every automotive company is developing autonomous self-driving vehicles. In fact, not long ago, an autonomous...

Read more >

A recurring theme in discussions with wireless operators about NFV and SDN migration is their frustration with traditional Network Equipment Providers for not moving fast enough to deliver native VNF...

Read more >

View All

Join Mavenir's John Baker, SVP of Business Development, at CableLabs Envision Vendor Forum 2021: Mobile and Convergence on April 21st, 2021.

Read more >

Open standards, open platforms and open source for cloud native 5G': This talk discusses the benefits and challenges for operators as they migrate towards “open” eco-systems for multi-vendor cloud-native 5G deployments.

Read more >

Join Mavenir's Susie Riley, GM, Monetization Business Unit, for the Transforming Customer Engagement for a New World with Business Messaging Webinar on April 22, 2021.

Read more >

View All

Need More Information?

Building the future of networks with cloud-native software that runs on any cloud and transforms the way the world connects.