Part 3 of 8: We are going this direction no matter what.
In their third ebook, “Invest in NFV management and orchestration”, Ericsson goes straight for the jugular (they get nicer after the first page). With physical networks, telcos can provide management and orchestration (MANO) capabilities per function (EPC, IMS, RAN).
But Ericsson points out that in the cloud, where all of those capabilities are hosted by a software-defined infrastructure (SDI), MANO *has* to be integrated and applied across all the functional layers at once. It’s a massive difference.
The coordination has to be comprehensive AND the thinking has to extend beyond the individual telco to integration across other provider’s cloud deployments. Thus the remainder of the ebook’s focus on investing in automation and standards-based MANO.
Remember, don’t give up, we are going this direction no matter what (because Dez wants 5G for Christmas), but buckle up because it’s massive.
I really like how the Ericsson ebooks cover the core components of the NFV transition without belittling any of us. Terms and definitions we’ve used for decades are getting redefined and we all need to be on the same page, even if it does feel a little bit like going back to school (at hyper-speed).
Overview Of ETSI NFV MANO
For example, are you up to speed on the ETSI standards for NFV MANO? (Remembering that staying standards-compliant is the key to interoperability across providers, which is in turn the key to avoiding obsolescence…) ETSI recommends MANO be implemented with three functional blocks, the NFV orchestrator, virtual infrastructure managers (VIM), and a VNF manager. For a good summary of these blocks, reference the ebook.
They also do more than repeat the word “automation” over and over, which is nice, they get into the reasons why: lifecycle management, workload optimisation and preventive maintenance (I’m particularly excited by this last one, even if I don’t believe we’re *quite* there yet, the AI for true *predictive* maintenance is just around the corner….).
And of course, the automation is taking place in multiple places at the same time, network orchestrators in the cloud, in the WAN transport, at different vendors… for an ecosystem of 5G services ( read my NFV blog #2 on 5G reasons why ) provided by multiple partners….using external payment gateways for BSS-driven billing and revenue sharing….and leveraging the same top data analytics providers for consistent reporting… all of this smoothly integrated because of standards compliance.
I’m of course completely gaga about telco developing its own cloud ecosystem, independent of the Azures of the world. Because we’re all about standards-compliance, I strongly believe this will happen, successfully, and it will be *the* defining aspect of our success.
As I mentioned earlier, there’s a complete series of eight ebooks from Ericsson, which break the transition down step-by-step. I recommend you grab all eight of them and consume them at your own pace, in bite-sized chunks to avoid choking – this is a long-term strategic play, you’ll need your strength. Grab your copy of all eight free NFV eBooks from Ericsson here => ericsson.com/nfv
That’s it for part three in this eight-part series, thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in part four.