Vivo expands with Netcracker

Vivo Expands Netcracker’s Service Management as Part of Large-Scale Digital Transformation.

Netcracker Technology announced that Vivo, Telefónica Group’s Brazilian subsidiary, has upgraded and expanded its use of Netcracker’s Service Management solution. The solution will help Vivo standardize provisioning and activation for all B2B and B2C mobile services.

Vivo is the leading communications service provider in Brazil, delivering fixed-line and mobile voice, television and internet broadband services to approximately 97 million customers across the country.

Upgrading and expanding Netcracker’s Service Management solution is part of Vivo’s larger digital transformation and will enable Vivo to accelerate core mobile service delivery and management, ensuring speedy activation, provisioning and assurance. This expansion comes shortly after the announcement that Vivo extended its use of Netcracker’ s Revenue Management solution.

“Netcracker’s proven ability to deliver sophisticated solutions that enable and support digital transformation strategies largely influenced our decision to upgrade and expand our use of its service management platform,” said Adriana Lika, IT Director at Vivo. “By standardizing and streamlining the way we activate and provision mobile services, we will be able to provide our customers with a better experience.”

“In order to keep up with the demands from millions of subscribers in the rapidly digitalizing Latin American market, it’s critical for service providers to be agile,” said Fabio Gatto, General Manager of Latin America at Netcracker. “We are excited to continue working with Vivo and be the provider of choice for revenue and service management.”

ZTE stops operating activities and suspends trading

As a result of an export denial order by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), ZTE has opted to cease all major operating activities and trading of shares on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

The ban on ZTE comes as a result of selling products to Iran. It prevents ZTE from purchasing components (eg semiconductors), software (eg licensed components of Android OS) or technology from US manufacturers. It impacts ZTE products from smartphones to routing and switching gear.

Huawei is also under investigation by the US Department of Justice.

This could have widespread ramifications for the telecommunications industry as operators will now no longer be able to source replacement parts or upgrades. You could speculate that wholesale network replacement projects will soon follow as well as the trickle-down effect into OSS/BSS.

Note that I’m not just talking about ZTEsoft OSS/BSS here. I’m talking about all the other OSS/BSS that will need to be updated as a result of the seemingly inevitable ZTE equipment change-out. And I’m talking about the secondary, tertiary, etc impacts as well as all subsequent ripples. It starts with 5G but the ramifications could be much bigger over the next few years.

Telefónica Spain transforms DCs with Nuage

Telefónica Spain transforms its data centers with Nokia high-performance routing and Nuage Networks Virtualized Cloud Services.

Nokia and its venture focused on software-defined networking (SDN), Nuage Networks, are partnering with Telefónica Spain to build an open, elastic and highly secure data center network infrastructure, dramatically expanding the agility, scale and efficiency of its cloud-based services.

A key part of Telefónica’s cloud vision is to offer enterprises the ability to easily order, customize and configure value-added services through a self-service portal for on-demand delivery. Having already deployed an SD-WAN infrastructure in 2017, Telefónica is leveraging and extending that investment to include modern software-defined data centers (SDDC). The Nuage Networks Virtualized Cloud Services (VCS) solution automates secure connectivity and network services across efficient and advanced datacenter fabrics powered by Nokia and Nuage Networks routers. This modernization will propel Telefónica service offerings ranging from enterprise hosting and co-location to enterprise wide-area networks (WAN) and enterprise cloud infrastructure.

The Nuage Networks VCS solution allows Telefónica to accelerate the provisioning of new customers, applications and networks with cloud-scale efficiency. The solution automatically establishes networking configurations, with quality of service (QoS) and security policies. It also enables zero-touch, policy-based network automation of applications running on any infrastructure, whether virtual machines, containers or bare-metal servers. The solution is OpenStack compliant and fully certified with the Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack platform.

Additionally Nuage Networks will enable hybrid cloud seamless interconnection between Private DC, Telefónica SDDC and Public Clouds, where Telefónica’s customers require solutions to address the needs of cloud-based applications such as cloudbursting, optimizing latency, virtualized networking and routing services.

To implement Telefónica’s advanced leaf-spine datacenter architecture – a specialized topology that minimizes latency and bottlenecks – Nokia and Nuage Networks are delivering routing platforms with the density, flexibility, and cost efficiency to meet Telefónica’s objectives across the full range of interfaces. Telefónica’s hosted infrastructure ensures that enterprises get the highest level of agility and responsiveness, while avoiding the complexity and risks of managing their own cloud.

Joaquín Mata, director of operations, network and IT at Telefónica España, said: “To meet the rapidly emerging business requirements for agility and on-demand deployments, we moved aggressively to build our business connectivity services around a new cloud-based architecture. Nuage Networks provided us with a highly scalable SDN architecture that could support all our services across all our regions without disruption. We are confident our customers will significantly improve their businesses with these new cloud-based services.”

Sunil Khandekar, founder and chief executive officer of Nuage Networks from Nokia, said: “The IT, communications and service needs of today’s enterprises have much higher demands than just a few years ago and therefore require new technologies to support them. We worked closely with Telefónica to assure the Nuage Networks SDN solutions address the requirements of its entire network infrastructure from the data center to remote WAN sites around the globe. Enterprise customers who need more flexibility and agility to quickly propel themselves into new markets can get it through trusted providers like Telefónica.”

Overview of the solution to be deployed:

  • The Nuage Networks VCS enables Telefónica to automate the configuration, management and optimization of virtual networks in the datacenter, including bandwidth, QoS policy, and security services.
  • The Nuage Networks VCS provides per-tenant micro-segmentation and access controls to individual applications and workloads, irrespective of whether they are bare metal, virtual machines, or containers.
  • Nuage Networks enables Telefónica to deliver SD-WAN and SDDC services using a single common Networks Virtualized Services Platform (VSP), paving the way for a massively multi-tenant, fully automated and highly secure SDN infrastructure that spans the datacenter, the branch and the cloud.
  • Telefónica’s SDDC solution combines high performance routing and gateway functionality delivered by Nokia’s FP4-powered 7750 SR-1 routers for datacenter gateway and tera-leaf functionality. Nokia 7250 IXR-10 routers are deployed as super spine nodes, delivering massive density for 100GbE interconnection. Both platforms share the common SR OS operating system, proven over years of deployment in networks of leading operators, including Telefónica. Virtualized instantiations of network functions such as route reflectors (VSR-RR) are also based on the SR OS, and seamlessly deployed alongside SDDC & carrier SDN implementations.
  • The Nuage Networks 210 WBX will be used as a data center leaf router, offering a high density, flexible, cost-effective solution for 1GbE, 10GbE, 25GbE, 40GbE, 50GbE and 100GbE interfaces.

Bouygues Telecom extends with Netcracker

Bouygues Telecom Selects Netcracker’s Revenue Management Solution in its Drive Toward Convergence.

Netcracker Technology announced that the French operator Bouygues Telecom has extended its use of Netcracker’s Revenue Management solution. Bouygues Telecom already uses Netcracker’s solution for its mobile subscribers and plans to use the platform for fixed-line subscribers in Fall 2018.

As part of this initiative, Netcracker delivered an upgraded Revenue Management solution to Bouygues Telecom to support long-term growth strategies. The highly configurable and scalable Netcracker BSS platform will help Bouygues Telecom streamline core customer-facing processes and reduce operational costs.

“Throughout our partnership, Netcracker has validated its dedication and ability to continuously support our mission-critical billing operations,” said Alain Moustard, Chief Information Officer at Bouygues Telecom. “We extended our partnership with Netcracker and its next-generation Revenue Management solution to meet the digitalization transformation requirements from our market.”

“Leveraging scalable BSS is critical for service providers to deliver and bill for the highly digital and innovative services that customers expect today,” said Roni Levy, General Manager of Europe at Netcracker. “We are excited to continue our partnership with Bouygues Telecom as it strives to provide its customers with the most innovative, user-friendly digital services.”

Nokia acquires SpaceTime Insight

Nokia acquires SpaceTime Insight to expand its IoT software portfolio and accelerate vertical application development.

Nokia has acquired SpaceTime Insight to expand its Internet of Things (IoT) portfolio and IoT analytics capabilities, and accelerate the development of new IoT applications for key vertical markets.

Based in San Mateo, California, with offices in the U.S., Canada, U.K., India and Japan, SpaceTime Insight provides machine learning-powered analytics and IoT applications for some of the world’s largest transportation, energy and utilities organizations, including Entergy, FedEx, NextEra Energy, Singapore Power and Union Pacific Railroad. Its machine learning models and other advanced analytics, designed specifically for asset-intensive industries, predict asset health with a high degree of accuracy and optimize related operations. As a result, SpaceTime Insight’s applications help customers reduce cost and risk, increase operational efficiencies, reduce service outages and more.

The acquisition supports Nokia’s software strategy by bringing SpaceTime Insight’s sales expertise and proven track record in IoT application development, machine learning and data science to the Nokia Software IoT product unit. It will strengthen Nokia’s IoT software portfolio and IoT analytics capabilities, and accelerate the development of Nokia’s IoT offerings to deliver high-value IoT applications and services to new and existing customers.

The addition of SpaceTime Insight will also broaden the company’s ability to deliver new, advanced applications for key vertical markets, including energy, logistics, transportation and utilities.

Paul Lau, Chief Grid Strategy and Operations Officer at Sacramento Municipal Utility District, said: “We’ve partnered with SpaceTime to help us be more responsive, more efficient and ultimately able to deliver more value to our customers. Combining their innovative solutions with Nokia’s world-class portfolio will provide customers with powerful new tools to better manage assets, maximize efficiencies and deliver new capabilities.”

Bhaskar Gorti, president of Nokia Software, said: “Adding SpaceTime to Nokia Software is a strong step forward in our strategy, and will help us deliver a new class of intelligent solutions to meet the demands of an increasingly interconnected world. Together, we can empower customers to realize the full value of their people, processes and assets, and enable them to deliver rich, world-class digital experiences.”

SpaceTime Insight and its CEO Rob Schilling will join the IoT product unit within the Nokia Software business group.

Rob Schilling, CEO of SpaceTime Insight, said: “Today marks a transformational moment for SpaceTime, and I’m delighted to join forces with one of the world’s top organizations-a global brand that is reshaping the future of networking and intelligent software. I am excited for this incredible opportunity to help accelerate and scale Nokia’s IoT business and provide a new class of next-generation IoT solutions customers cannot find anywhere else.”

Vertel launches Nuage SD-WAN

Vertel launches SD-WAN services from Nuage Networks to organizations across Australia.

Vertel and Nuage Networks, Nokia’s software defined network (SDN) venture, will work together to launch software defined WAN (SD-WAN) services for Vertel’s government, enterprise and service provider customers in July this year. Once deployed, Vertel will be one of the first providers in Australia to offer seamless, cloud-connected WAN services, with its customers enjoying all the benefits of moving to the Cloud.

By offering cloud-native WAN services, the Nuage Networks SD-WAN solution will enable Vertel to better penetrate the market for critical network services in Australia. SD-WAN will also underpin the delivery of a range of enhanced ICT services such as managed security, Unified Communications, IP-PBX, video conferencing, carrier grade WLAN, private LTE, Push to talk over Cellular (PoC) and multi-access edge computing (MEC) services.

Andrew Findlay, Executive Director, Vertel, said: “We undertook a comprehensive analysis of the SD-WAN offerings in the market and as a provider of critical network services, the Nuage solution was the obvious choice for us. While the ‘over the top’ SD-WAN alternatives are a good fit for cost focused SMB customers, our customer base is more driven by the value that high performing ICT services create for their business. We benefit from the innovation and flexibility of Nuage while leveraging the experience and broader offerings of Nokia for the integration of their more traditional fixed and mobile offerings. We are also excited about the ability to dramatically simplify our customers’ access to and usage of a broad range of private and public cloud services.”

Sunil Khandekar, Chief Executive Officer, Nuage Networks, said: “We are excited to support Vertel as it seizes the benefits of SD-WAN to expand its presence in Australia. This is an important milestone since it is the first service provider SD-WAN project for us in Australia. Vertel will be able to leverage our extensive experience with tier one service providers around the world as they enter this new phase of offering software defined services.

Overview of the solution to be deployed:

  • Nokia Nuage Networks Virtualized Network Services (VNS) will enable Vertel to add automation, reduce operational expenditure and deliver secure and scalable WAN services across Australia
  • Nokia Professional Services team will ensure the efficient and timely completion of the project
  • Nuage Networks solution provides a single SDN automation platform for the private cloud, WAN, and public cloud, ensuring flexibility, agility and operational simplification

Netcracker extends Billing and CRM with Charter

Netcracker Extends Billing and CRM Relationship With Charter.

Netcracker Technology announced that Charter Communications has executed a long-term extension of its BSS and professional services relationship with Netcracker as part of its large-scale standardization program.

Charter, the second largest cable service provider in the United States which operates under the Spectrum brand, provides services to more than 25 million business and residential customers across the country. Following the acquisition of Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks in 2016, Charter is standardizing and simplifying core customer-facing services and processes across the combined business.

Netcracker’s BSS solution provides Charter with CRM, ordering and billing capabilities for approximately half of its expanded customer base. As part of the multiyear extension, Charter will continue to leverage Netcracker’s solution and services to reduce operating costs, support increasing customer demands for complex digital services, and improve and standardize customer-facing services and processes.

“Netcracker’s Revenue Management and CRM solutions give us the flexibility and functionality needed to deliver the best possible experience to our customers as they demand more digital services,” said Mike Ciszek, Senior Vice President of Billing Operations at Charter. “We will continue leveraging Netcracker’s offerings as a means to standardize core customer processes.”

“The cable market is rapidly evolving, with new expectations around the delivery of high-value digital services, increasingly personalized multiservice bundles, and more efficient customer interactions,” said Christopher Finn, General Manager of North America at Netcracker. “As one of the largest cable operators in the United States, these capabilities are of the utmost importance for Charter. We are excited to extend our relationship with Charter and help the company meet these mission-critical objectives.”

SK Telecom to provide blockchain-based asset management service

SKT to provide blockchain-based asset management service
Courtesy of the Korea Herald.

SK Telecom will provide an asset management service by using blockchain technologies within this year, and build a platform that will help match blockchain startups with investors for growth of the techs and related industry, the mobile carrier’s blockchain unit head said Tuesday.

Oh Se-hyeon, executive vice president of SKT’s blockchain business unit, said the company is planning to launch a blockchain-based asset management and payment service, which will ensure trust for peer-to-peer transactions.

“The service will allow users to manage all bank accounts, credit cards, mileage points and other non-financial assets, including cryptocurrencies, in one basket, and enable transactions of the assets based on trust,” Oh said.

SKT will also launch a platform named “Token Exchange Hub” that will boost transparent financial transactions by startups and small and medium-size enterprises by supporting initial coin offering.

“SKT will provide systematic administrative supports for startups to issue bitcoins in a more transparent and safe manner through the platform,” Oh said.

The mobile carrier will not issue virtual coins or engage in ICO, but offer technological and financial consultations for startups.

“We will provide consistent supports for companies that will do businesses using blockchain technologies and help create a blockchain ecosystem,“ she added.

The SK Telecom blockchain blueprint can be found here.

Merkator acquires NetworkMining

Merkator acquires NetworkMining.

Merkator nv/sa, a geospatial asset management solution provider, announced the acquisition of NetworkMining nv/sa, an independent supplier of IP & Optical Network Mediation Software for Communication Service Providers & Utilities. For more than a decade, NetworkMining has been recognized as a specialist in IP/optical mediation and inventory software and as such will bolster Merkator’s expertise and portfolio of Telco & Utilities solutions.

Merkator and NetworkMining, both Belgian-based private companies, have gained the confidence of Tier-1 Telco and Smart Grid operators in Belgian & Luxembourg and throughout EMEA and Asia. NetworkMining deployments cover passive fiber and cable infrastructure, as well as active network technologies, including SDH, WDM, IP/MPLS, Ethernet and Microwave. At present devices from all leading IP & Optical Networking vendors are supported by NetworkMining’s software solutions.

Geert De Coensel, Director of Merkator nv/sa, explains: “The requirement for utility operators to combine both the physical network inventory with logical network information has been a big challenge for the past decades.” Merkator will provide unique software solutions to integrate the network design and build workflows together with real-time operations and maintenance. “This first acquisition allows us to better support network operators with their current and upcoming business challenges.”, added Geert De Coensel.

NetworkMining will be further consolidated into Merkator nv/sa with respect for all pending and future contracts. Roland Leners, CEO of NetworkMining, explains: “This is excellent news for our existing customers and partners. It enables NetworkMining to strengthen its position in the vibrant market of automation software for IP/optical networks. We also have immediate access to the Geo-expertise of the Merkator people and together we can offer a full stack solution to our customers.”

Orange Luxembourg contracts Comarch

Orange Luxembourg contracts Comarch for complete BSS overhaul.

Comarch, announced that Orange Luxembourg selected Comarch BSS products to improve billing and customer management processes.

The solution covers Orange mobile prepaid and postpaid services (voice and data), the “Orange Love” offer (internet, TV, VoIP, and mobile) as well as cloud and third party services in Luxembourg. These will be offered, charged, billed and managed using an array of Comarch BSS modules including Convergent Charging Billing & Revenue Management, Voucher Management, CRM, Self-Care, Product Catalog, Order Management, and Application Integration Framework.

Comarch will oversee and coordinate the whole project, which entails integrating over 40 IT systems, full system implementation, testing, migration, and roll-out. After go-live, the solution will be hosted in Comarch Data Center in Lille, France. On top of the solution, Comarch will provide managed services, covering a wide range of activities including support and maintenance, bill run, and regular catalog releases.

We were very impressed by Comarch’s highly responsive and flexible attitude, as well as their coverage of our current and future needs – said Werner De Laet, CEO at Orange Luxembourg. Telecom operators that want to stay competitive in today’s market need to deliver top-notch customer experience and provide personalized, data-driven services through all touchpoints. It is also crucial to manage all operational aspects by decreasing the number of incidents, improving response rates, and increasing efficiency through automation focused on added value activities. In partnership with Comarch, we aim to complete a very sizable project that will affect and transform all aspects of our BSS operations, ranging from prepaid charging and credit control to customer information management, mobile network provisioning, and trouble ticketing. Based on what we have seen so far, we are very hopeful and optimistic about the outcomes of the project.

Today, mobile consumers use their phones for all sorts of various daily activities. Modern BSS solutions need to reflect this and offer flexible billing and charging options, easy introduction of products and superior automation – all rooted in a data-centric and customer oriented approach. Orange Luxembourg needed modern IT tools that would allow all of that, at an acceptable cost. We will be performing a complete overhaul of our client’s BSS with 6 products and more than 30 functionalities to be implemented as well as over 40 system integrations planned. This will bring considerable improvements to Orange Luxembourg business processes by decreasing operational costs and boosting customer satisfaction – said Wojciech Pawlus, Managing Director – Benelux at Comarch.

Etisalat Selects NEC / Netcracker

Etisalat Selects NEC and Netcracker as Prime Integrator for its NFV Infrastructure Platform to Advance its Telecom Cloud Program.

NEC Corporation and Netcracker Technology announced that Etisalat has selected NEC/Netcracker as the prime solution provider for its multivendor telecom cloud program. NEC/Netcracker will provide systems integration services, operational tools, NFV orchestration and full automation in a DevOps mode to “cloudify” its network. As the prime integrator, NEC/Netcracker will also provide third-party hardware, VIM, SDN control and network equipment to create a full end-to-end cloud platform. Etisalat’s companywide program, called the Sahaab initiative, will leverage NEC/Netcracker’s NFVI solution to make its network more agile, responsive, scalable and efficient, enabling the deployment of advanced digital services.

Etisalat is the Middle East’s leading communications provider, offering services to more than 160 million customers. Etisalat’s Sahaab program will help it improve operational performance, reduce time-to-market for digital services and enable greater network elasticity.

NEC/Netcracker’s open, standards-compliant solution will introduce new levels of automation for Etisalat, enabling the speed and agility required for optimizing virtual network function (VNF) performance. NEC/Netcracker’s NFV Orchestration solution, which can seamlessly scale to manage dynamic network services and virtual resources, will ensure that Etisalat’s cloud-based network can support new digital services such as 5G, IoT and smart cities.

“As enterprises and residential customers embrace practices and lifestyles that use real-time digital services, our network needs to be able to handle the dynamic nature of those offerings,” said Esmaeel Alhammadi, Senior Vice President for Network Development at Etisalat. “NEC/Netcracker’s NFVI solution empowers our network with the elasticity and responsiveness we need to deliver next-generation digital services to our customers.”

“We are honored to have been selected by Etisalat as the prime overall integrator for this second-generation SDN/NFV cloud,” said Shigeru Okuya, Senior Vice President at NEC. “NEC will leverage its global experience to support these new cutting-edge cloud-based digital services.”

“The evolution of and increased demand for digital technologies has pressured service providers to transform their networks into more software-defined, cloud-based environments,” said Aloke Tusnial, CTO of SDN/NFV at Netcracker. “We are glad to help Etisalat make its important transition to a cloud platform, which will introduce more agility and automation in delivering innovative digital services.”

Nokia / Nuage selected by China Mobile

Nokia selected by China Mobile to build advanced public/private cloud services infrastructure using Nuage Networks VSP.

Nokia’s Nuage Networks has been chosen by China Mobile (Suzhou) Software Technical Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of China Mobile, as the SDN platform for China Mobile’s public and private enterprise cloud services offering. The platform is based on the Nuage Networks VSP and includes cloud implementations on virtual machines, Kubernetes (K8S) containers and OpenStack Ironic-based bare metal servers.

In order to address the growing appetite for cloud services among its enterprise customers, China Mobile Communications Company (CMCC) is expanding its software-defined networking (SDN) support for new private/public cloud services. In the past two years, Nokia Shanghai Bell, Nokia’s joint venture in China, helped deploy the Nuage Networks VSP solution to deliver China Mobile’s public and private cloud services in 10 data centers, the largest deployment containing over 1,000 servers. Nokia Shanghai Bell ranked No.1 and won 55% share in this project. This project cemented Nokia Shanghai Bell’s status as the leading SDN vendor powering CMCC existing cloud services.

The new services, enabled by the Nuage Networks VSP, allows CMCC to expand its offer to include new public, private and hybrid cloud services such as hosting workloads on either Kubernetes (K8S) containers or on bare metal servers.

An important aspect of the Nuage Networks VSP is the inherent flexibility of the platform. Along with OpenStack, the platform supports multiple cloud management systems, hypervisor and workload types. A centralized policy manager and SDN controller automate the configuration, management and optimization of virtual networks, including security services that provide tenant isolation and access controls to individual applications and workloads. The Nuage Networks VSP combines policy based automation, large scale and high performance with multi-tenancy, resiliency and comprehensive end-to-end security.

Sunil Khandekar, CEO for Nokia’s Nuage Networks, said: “Having a strong relationship with CMCC based on the work we’ve already done with them, we were especially pleased to be chosen to continue with this important project. The Nuage Networks solution allows CMCC to offer some very dynamic, high performing and attractive cloud services for their customers.”

DANOS a Unified Network Operating System

The Linux Foundation Hosts ‘DANOS’ Project, a Unified Network Operating System.

The Linux Foundation announced the Disaggregated Network Operating System (DANOS) project to enable community collaboration across network hardware, forwarding and operating system layers. DANOS is initially based on AT&T’s “dNOS” software framework of an open, cost-effective and flexible alternative to traditional networking operating systems. As part of The Linux Foundation, it will incorporate contributions from complementary open source communities to build a standardized distributed Network Operating System (NOS).

NOS creation has historically been challenging due to the complexity and magnitude of software and hardware requirements — as each device in the network needs its own operating system. However, the growth of open source combined with advances in both software and hardware, has fostered an ecosystem of advanced networking applications, new and open technologies, and building blocks on which to host an open and flexible NOS.

“We are pleased to welcome DANOS to The Linux Foundation community of open, collaborative innovation,” said Arpit Joshipura, General Manager of Networking, The Linux Foundation. “DANOS will provide an open NOS framework that leverages existing open source resources and complementary platforms such as switches and white box routers. We invite others in the broader ecosystem to join the effort to accelerate innovation and creation of an industry-standard disaggregated NOS.”

“As far as we know, DANOS is an industry first: an open-source, carrier-grade operating system for wide area networks,” said John Medamana, Vice President, Packet Optical Network, AT&T. “DANOS is a milestone for us and the industry, and we’re excited to see how developers and other users implement and build upon it.”

Supporting Quotes:

  • “The FRRouting team welcomes DANOS to the Linux Foundation,” said J.R. Rivers, CTO of Cumulus Networks. “With 3,413 commits from 68 authors and 42 organizations in the last year, the team continues to build the most full-featured, high-performance open routing stack available.”
  • “On behalf of OpenSwitch I’d like to welcome DANOS to open source NOS and Disaggregated Networking,” said Alley Hasan, Board Chair, OpenSwitch, and Director, Strategy Networking Dell. “We look forward to the collaboration with DANOS on leveraging the work OPX has accomplished in order to drive more value for operators and to accelerate the adoption of composable networks.”
  • “ONF has been a champion of disaggregation, white boxes and open source and in this regard, we are happy to see DANOS launched as a carrier-grade, open source network OS for white boxes,” said Guru Parulkar, Executive Director, ONF. “We are looking forward to DANOS and ONF’s recent open source platform Stratum, thin switch OS, working together.”
  • “SDKLT is a revolutionary, feature-rich open source Software Development Kit, which enables a new approach to switch configuration,” said Eli Karpilovski, Director of Marketing, Switch Products at Broadcom. “Broadcom is thrilled to showcase how this mature switch SDK can advance Linux Foundation projects such as DANOS.”
  • “We’re excited to see the Switch Abstraction Interface (SAI) as the hardware abstraction layer for DANOS, which will enable DANOS to work across the wide set of switches and switch ASICs that implement SAI,” said Dave Maltz, Distinguished Engineer, Microsoft Corp.

Partner Quotes:

  • “Inocybe welcomes the DANOS project to the open networking community that we have been focused on expanding,” said Mathieu Lemay, CEO of Inocybe and OpenSwitch Board Member. “The DANOS project will help grow the network operating system community that will incorporate existing work we have accomplished in the OpenSwitch community and others like it. This collaboration will help drive innovation at the foundation of the network stack, and will drive acceleration of the adoption of open source networking software and white box switches.”
  • “Juniper Networks has a longstanding commitment to the open source ecosystem through OpenContrail and is hyper-focused on disaggregation efforts to provide faster innovation for our customers,” said Bikash Koley, CTO and Executive Vice President at Juniper Networks. “We firmly believe that the way products are created and brought to market is rapidly changing and that openness and disaggregation will bring far greater economic and innovative strides to organizations. This is why Juniper intends to continue delivering on our promise of open and scalable networking options jointly through our work with the open community. We look forward to the community innovations that come out of the DANOS project under the Linux Foundation.”
  • “Metaswitch is a committed supporter of the Linux Foundation’s DANOS project and AT&T’s dNOS software framework,” said Shriraj Gaglani, EVP of Business Development at Metaswitch. “Our carrier-grade routing and control plane protocols install and operate as binary applications on top of these open network operating systems to enable true software disaggregation. Together, this will increase reliability and flexibility for white box switching solutions while lowering capital and operating expenditures.”
  • “Orange is pleased to take part in the definition of a single open Network Operating System, which will provide an opportunity to foster an ecosystem benefiting operators, vendors and customers,” said Christian Gacon, Vice President, Wireline Networks and Infrastructure of Orange Labs Networks. “We are convinced this initiative will allow operators to accelerate the development of new and relevant services for customers and to prepare the future of the network.”
  • “Silicom is pleased and excited to take part in this important initiative, open designs and  integration of disaggregated deployments are a part of our strategy,” said Elad Blatt, Chief Strategy and Business Development Officer at Silicom. “DANOS enables our Edge networking devices to be truly open and programmable.”

Code and collateral transitions are underway as the community begins to coalesce around the DANOS framework. A first code release is expected the second half of 2018. In the interim, more information about DANOS is available here. Details about AT&T’s initial dNOS framework are available via white paper: “Towards an Open, Disaggregated Network Operating System.”

Amdocs and Microsoft enable ONAP on Azure

Amdocs collaborates with Microsoft to enable ONAP on Microsoft Azure.

Amdocs announced its implementation of Open Network Automation Platform (ONAP) on the Microsoft Azure cloud platform. This new development enables operators to deliver virtual network services running on Azure, orchestrated and managed using ONAP. Amdocs and Microsoft will show how operators can gain the time-to-market and cost benefits of public clouds with a demonstration of ONAP running on Azure this week at the Linux Foundation’s Open Network Summit in Los Angeles.

Amdocs is working with Microsoft to make the ONAP code available to the open source community in May 2018. Network operators will then be able to offer network services running on Azure as the primary cloud or as complementary capacity for their private cloud to deploy virtual network functions that are managed and orchestrated by ONAP.

“This project is a first step in the evolution of ONAP to manage a multi-cloud environment where network capacity can be consumed in a dynamic way across a combination of private and public clouds,” said Anthony Goonetilleke, Group President of Amdocs Technology. “It is a proof point showing the industry momentum behind ONAP while reducing the upfront investment to embark on a network virtualization strategy. It is also further evidence of Amdocs and Microsoft’s commitment to continue innovating and promoting open source networking solutions to accelerate the adoption of NFV.”

Yousef Khalidi, Corporate Vice President for Azure Networking, Microsoft Corp. said, “Today’s next-generation operators are challenged by the complexity and cost of developing their existing network infrastructures and require new cloud services to enable faster network virtualization. To address these issues, Amdocs and Microsoft are using ONAP to control network services on Microsoft Azure – an integrated solution that helps network operators deliver advanced virtual network functionality, while simply and reliably automating operations and reducing costs using open source technology and cloud based-services.”

Digital Transformation World, the new name for TM Forum Live!

It’s only recently dawned on me that TM Forum Live! has a new website and a new name. It’s now called Digital Transformation World.

Time has flown. It’s already less than two months until the event (14-16 May 2018 in Nice, France). Catalyst day is on the 17th. Registrations can already be made… at this link: https://dtw.tmforum.org/registration/.

Check out the list of speakers. There are some really interesting topics awaiting to be discussed. I’ve already reached out to a couple of the speakers for a quick chat about their topic/s.

Fortumo partners with Apigate in Cambodia

Fortumo partners with Apigate to launch content services in Cambodia.

Fortumo and Apigate, a subsidiary of Axiata Digital, announced their latest collaboration to launch content services in Cambodia via Smart Axiata’s Direct Carrier Billing API. This collaboration will enable Smart’s subscribers to make payments in app stores for digital content and games by conveniently charging the payments to their mobile phone bill.

Almost half of Cambodians own a smartphone, while credit card ownership in the country is below 3 percent. This implies a majority of users have the ability to access free online content, without the ability to pay for premium services. Direct Carrier Billing API helps digital merchants overcome this challenge by allowing any prepaid and postpaid mobile user to make payments through their telco balance instead.

Through this collaboration, Fortumo is only required to integrate once with Apigate to deploy premium content by digital content providers at a faster rate and reduced costs to more than 8 million Smart subscribers. Apigate provides Fortumo with immediate access to the Cambodian API marketplace, thus enhancing sales and business reach for all parties involved.

Chief Executive Officer of Axiata Digital, Mohd Khairil Abdullah said, “This collaboration adds value to Apigate by tapping into the underserved segment in Cambodia which consists largely of the prepaid segment without credit card ownership. We look forward to create a long-term collaboration with Fortumo and derive mutual benefits from scale, faster delivery, and richer content for the underserved segment across our footprint.”

“Digital merchants are increasingly relying on telco channels for user acquisition, payments, and loyalty. Fortumo is able to give them access to these channels at scale, by enabling global expansion through one integration. We are excited to plug in another connection with Apigate, a leading and innovative API platform and services provider in the region, to create increased reach and revenue both for our merchants as well as our telco partner,” said Sid Sahi, Vice President of Carrier Sales and Business Development in South-East Asia, Fortumo.

Incorporated in 2017, Apigate has built a network of global and regional partners including major marketplaces such as the Apple App Store and Google Playstore. Apigate’s hubs across four continents in Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America gives it access to 1.3 billion customers from over 50 MNOs.

Fortumo’s service is used by leading digital merchants and mobile operators around the world. In addition, Fortumo offers local market insights and facilitates relationships with mobile operators.

PCCW Global and Colt demonstrate payment settlements using blockchain

PCCW Global and Colt demonstrate speedy payment settlements using blockchain technology.

PCCW Global, the international operating division of HKT, Hong Kong’s premier telecommunications service provider, and Colt Technology Services have collaborated with Clear, a blockchain start-up company, to demonstrate that inter-carrier settlement times can be reduced from hours to minutes by blockchain technology.

The objective of this Proof of Concept (PoC) was to ascertain if the advantages offered by blockchain technology could be applied to make inter-carrier settlements more efficient, reliable, and scalable.

This PoC was specifically focused on the settlement area of wholesale voice minutes, as the majority of telecom operators have similar processes for these transactions.

Today, despite the financial importance of these settlements to wholesale carriers, they still involve manual transactions which are costly for all parties. In the trial, the application of blockchain’s decentralized, cryptographically enforced, immutable ledger technology resulted in tens of thousands of call records being analyzed and settled in a few minutes. Using blockchain technology, hundreds of hours of manual work were reduced to seconds of automated verification and settlement.

Furthermore, blockchain technology adds an extra layer of security and trust to transactions in an industry where sensitive and proprietary information is frequently exchanged, fraud is rife, and dispute resolution can be lengthy and complex.

Most of today’s blockchain technologies lack solutions for scalability, contract privacy and enterprise grade business logic, all critical for an industry wide settlement and clearing platform. However, through the use of proprietary technologies, this PoC demonstrated the viability of a blockchain-based wholesale trading system.

Both Colt and PCCW Global are members of the ITW Global Leaders’ Forum (GLF), where discussions on blockchain have featured heavily, and it was in this forum that the collaboration was cemented. GLF aims to foster an environment within the telecom industry that focuses on ubiquity and interoperability among providers. This PoC was centered around these themes by attempting to understand how a technology such as blockchain can benefit the sector as a whole.

Mr. Marc Halbfinger, Chief Executive Officer of PCCW Global and the Chairman of the GLF, said, “Everyone is talking about blockchain but the use cases in the telecom industry have been fairly limited until now. Whilst this deployment is currently only at the PoC stage, through our collaboration with Colt we are eager to demonstrate how the many potential uses of blockchain across our industry can deliver value by improving the ways in which we interoperate.”

Mr. Carl Grivner, Chief Executive Officer of Colt, said, “It is our goal to create a more agile, customer oriented organization, and one way in which we are doing this is by exploring the benefits of disruptive technologies, such as blockchain. Collaborating with PCCW Global and Clear is ground breaking, as we have demonstrated how blockchain can transform the way we conduct business in the telecom industry.”

Mr. Gal Hochberg, Chief Executive Officer of Clear, said, “It is exciting for any business to create something that has the power to truly innovate how an entire industry operates. This PoC marks the beginning of how blockchain is set to revolutionize the telecom sector.”

Tele2 Netherlands deploys Nokia Cognitive Analytics

Tele2 Netherlands deploys Nokia Cognitive Analytics real-time software to consistently deliver a superior customer experience.

Nokia Traffica is helping Tele2 Netherlands deliver a superior real-time subscriber experience on its mobile network by more quickly and accurately identifying and resolving service issues and improving network quality.

Nokia Traffica software is part of the Nokia Cognitive Analytics portfolio. It is a real-time network analytics solution for monitoring and troubleshooting that provides deep insights into traffic, network conditions, locations, devices and subscriber activity. It enables service provider customer care and operations teams to better understand how subscribers are experiencing their services.

Building upon Tele2 Netherlands’ existing Traffica deployment, Nokia Traffica’s geolocation capabilities provide a granular view of services issues down to the geo-tile level. They also provide an intuitive, map-based visualization system making it easier for service providers to precisely pinpoint the location of service issues, such as poor cell coverage and dropped calls.

With these powerful new capabilities, Tele2 Netherlands can better detect, troubleshoot and resolve network and subscriber issues using real-world, real-time data, dramatically improving overall network quality, delivering a better subscriber experience and reducing churn.

Meile de Haan, CTO of Tele2 Netherlands, said: “Working with Nokia as our long-term strategic partner, the Traffica solution is well-suited to our needs. The new geolocation capabilities provide our customer care and operations teams with deeper insights that will enable us to consistently deliver the highest level of quality for our state-of-the-art LTE network.”

Mikko Ylä-Kauttu, account director, Netherlands at Nokia said: “Our Cognitive Analytics portfolio provides powerful tools and capabilities to help service providers increase efficiencies and improve network quality. We are delighted to work with Tele2 Netherlands to deliver the highest levels of network and service quality to their customers.”

Globe Telecom signs multi-year deal with Amdocs

Globe Telecom Signs Multi-Year Intelligent Operations Deal with Amdocs for Continuous Enhancement of Services and Operations.

Amdocs announced that it  has signed a multi-year services contract with Globe Telecom, one of the Philippines’ largest telecommunications providers, for continuous enhancement of Globe Telecom’s operations. According to the agreement, Amdocs Intelligent Operations will assist Globe in managing third-party systems and cloud management solutions. This includes modernizing and running IT operations for multiple lines of businesses, including prepaid and postpaid mobile services, fixed-line broadband, and enterprise services.

Furthermore, with Amdocs Intelligent Operations, Globe Telecom is embracing artificial intelligence, chatbots, and machine learning technologies to increase business agility and flexibility. The automation will enable faster resolution of issues and better customer experience.  As a result, Globe Telecom will be able to expedite their digital journey while reducing costs, and innovating and launching new services to deliver compelling experiences to customers.

“We are committed to enrich the lives of our customers in the digital age by continuously innovating our brand and delivering a diversity of new offerings to market faster by increasing our service agility and operations,” said Ernest Cu, president and CEO of Globe Telecom. “As we continue our journey towards the digital future, automation will play a crucial role in setting new benchmarks for customer experience,” Cu added.

“As one of the leaders in our industry, Globe Telecom thrives on continuously innovating their brand and enhancing the customer experience they deliver,” said Gary Miles, chief marketing officer at Amdocs. “With the emergence of new technologies creating ongoing disruption within the industry, more and more service providers are looking to transform traditional operations towards intelligent automation and optimization of their operations for more predictable service levels as well as improved efficiencies. Amdocs Intelligent Operations will enable Globe Telecom to continue to take to market the dynamic and compelling services which make their brand so strong.”

Amdocs Intelligent Operations is part of AmdocsONE, an open, modular and integrated solution set designed to accelerate the industry’s dynamic and continuous digital transformation.

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