Supporting a flexible and open NFV ecosystem.
In addition to announcing they will provide the foundation for the world’s largest IoT network deployment, this week at Mobile World Congress Hewlett Packard Enterprise, are hosting a Discussion Zone which is gathering over 60 telecoms experts over the week. HPE partners, analysts, standards organisations, CSPs, will all share insights into trends, advancements, challenges and strategies relating to the industry’s hottest topics.
Ahead of the show, we spoke to HPE’s Ivica Juresa, Marketing Director for Communications and Media Solutions to find out more.
Let’s talk about the OpenNFV showcase HPE are hosting this week. Who’s involved, what can service providers expect and what’s its mission?
The OpenNFV program was created to ensure that NFV is not just a theory but that companies can test their solutions against the NFV standards. As such HPE is providing a test bed and certifies that the solutions of the OpenNFV partners work in an NFV environment. More than 100 companies have so far joined the OpenNFV program and are in the process of certifying (or already have certified) their individual solutions. For Service Providers this allows them to easily pick NFV solutions and be ensured that they will run in a NFV environment. The OpenNFV showcase at MWC is showing some of the OpenNFV partners as proof points.
Is it different to the MWC discussion zone you’re hosting too?
The MWC discussion zone is hosting – as the name says – an all week program which discusses actual topics a Service Provider might be interested in. It is not limited to NFV but covers many topics we believe could be of interest for a Service Provider.
What’s new in NFV System 1.4?
Alongside the other updates we’ve announced across the HPE NFV portfolio, we’ve introduced a new version of our pre-integrated NFV solutions bundle, HPE NFV System 1.4. This solution leverages an optimal mix of hardware and software to ease the deployment of NFV, by offering customers a simplified and end-to-end solution from ordering, deployment, operations, lifecycle management and services. This latest update adds support for, and allows choice between, Red Hat OpenStack Platform and HPE Helion OpenStack Carrier Grade 4.0, as well as integrating the OpenDaylight-based software-defined networking (SDN) controller, enabling carrier SDN capabilities across various cloud platforms, including proprietary, OpenStack and containers.
Can you tell us about Virtual Headend Manager, what does this mean for media companies and their ability to improve customer experience for subscribers?
Customers want the flexibility to deploy a multi-vendor environments to take advantage of best-in-class or specialized solutions from different vendors. Our HPE Virtual Headend Manager (vHM) is the only multi-vendor, non-proprietary headend virtualization manager on the market. This means a CSP can manage their entire headend solution, with components from multiple vendors, from a single management point. Our software-defined approach enables CSPs to quickly deploy new channels in minutes, adapt to new technologies as they become available and reduce the complexity of integration. Additionally, HPE vHM enables CSPs to create new sources of revenues with innovative channels-as-a-service type of solutions.
Tell us about the Red Hat partnership/support?
HPE and Red Hat are working together to accelerate the deployment of a rich ecosystem of NFV solutions based on fully open, production ready, standards-based infrastructure. As part of this expanded collaboration HPE will offer ready-to-use, pre-integrated HPE NFV System solutions and verified reference architecture solutions for NFV incorporating Red Hat OpenStack Platform and Red Hat Ceph Storage for telecommunications customers, and, consistent with our broader open source software commitment, HPE is working with Red Hat to accelerate OpenStack adoption by CSPs worldwide, offering customers increased choice through multiple commercial distributions. This expanded collaboration also enables Red Hat to leverage HPE OpenNFV Labs for VNF certification and for Red Hat OpenStack Platform customers to access HPE VNF Onboarding Services.
What kind of a role should carriers and SPs be looking to play in the 5G/IoT decade and what’s your advice to them?
New services enabled by the inevitable evolution to 5G and the continued advances in IoT will be a major catalyst for CSP Digital Transformation. The Telco Cloud and the 5G Infrastructure should be designed so the vast majority of necessary actions can be taken at the first point of ingress into the network, and then only necessary traffic and data is passed on deeper into the network. HPE believes that the edge is the right place to start this transformation because will be the most dynamic part of the 5G network. It will be the first part of the network to manage exponential increases in connected devices, traffic and applications, generated by the higher-capacity 5G new radio technology – making it the best location for inserting data processing, control and intelligence. In a nutshell, distribute wherever you can, centralize only when you must and compute everywhere.
You’ve just been tapped up by AT&T to move their subscriber management to the cloud, it’s a big job as there are 130 million of them, why did they pick HPE and what’s their goal?
AT&T is aiming to make its network faster, simpler and more scalable, and chose HPE to help accelerate its transition to cloud-based virtual functions, using SDN and NFV. HPE SDM solutions are fully standards compliant, provide support for multiple network technologies and integrate with third-party network equipment vendor systems, helping AT&T to avoid vendor lock-in, both now and in the future. Their transformation from physical hardware to HPE’s cloud-based SDM solution will provide a highly scalable, reliable and flexible standards-based architecture that supports a diverse and evolving services ecosystem. By shifting core network functions from physical hardware to a virtualized cloud environment, AT&T will be able to deliver targeted services to customers more efficiently.