Are you heading to Digital Transformation Asia (the new name for TM Forum Live Asia!)?

DTA – TM Forum’s Digital Transformation Asia event (https://dta.tmforum.org/) is almost upon us already. Held in Kuala Lumpur from 13-15 November, there are some really interesting looking talks on the agenda (https://dta.tmforum.org/agenda). I’m looking forward to being overwhelmed by the collective genius that is sure to be in attendance.

Will you be making an appearance?

Ciena to acquire DonRiver

Ciena announces intent to acquire DonRiver.

Ciena Corporation has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire privately-held DonRiver, a global software and services company specializing in federated network and service inventory management solutions within the service provider Operational Support Systems (OSS) environment.

DonRiver will bring new capabilities to Ciena’s Blue Planet software and services portfolio that significantly enhance the company’s ability to deliver on its Adaptive Network vision through intelligent, closed-loop automation. Specifically, with the addition of DonRiver’s federated network and service inventory management solutions, Ciena’s Blue Planet capabilities will extend beyond network orchestration and control to also provide a unified inventory view of all elements across a provider’s network. Additionally, the DonRiver team of specialized OSS software, integration and consulting experts will complement and scale the Blue Planet organization to form a truly unique and specialized services group that is able to manage modernization projects across both IT and network operations.

“The combination of Blue Planet and DonRiver will enhance our ability to deliver closed loop automation of network services and the underlying operational processes across IT/operations and the network,” said Rick Hamilton, senior vice president of Global Software and Services at Ciena. “With this new set of technology and expertise, we can help customers realize the full benefits of network automation by helping them move away from highly complex and fragmented OSS environments to those that accurately reflect the real-time state and utilization of network resources.”

The transaction is expected to close during Ciena’s fiscal fourth quarter 2018 and is subject to customary closing conditions.

LG U+ (Korea) signs with Comarch

Comarch to Help Korean LG U+ to Launch One of the First 5G Networks Worldwide.

Comarch and LG U+ have signed a major contract in a bid to completely revamp the Korean operator’s network resource and service management, covering Operations Support & Readiness, Fulfilment and Assurance domains, in preparation for the operator’s planned big scale 5G rollout.

The upcoming implementation will allow LG U+ to migrate from its old in-house solution to a modern and comprehensive telco ecosystem.

Comarch will oversee the implementation of a complete stack of solutions consolidating the existing tools landscape into one unified, scalable platform in the areas of mobile and fixed networks. LG U+ goals in the project are to optimize internal company processes, and to improve the overall end-user experience.

The planned OSS stack overhaul will also be instrumental in the Korean operator’s plans to launch one of the first commercial 5G networks. While supporting the operator in pursuing the latest network technology, the Comarch system will also serve 3G, 4G and fixed network domains.

The solution delivered by Comarch will help LG U+ break IT architecture silos, prepare for efficient fulfilment of modern, 5G-based services, increase network management effectiveness and cut its costs through automation. It will also provide the tools to create logical connectivity layers in a unified format, support network virtualization, and handle the monitoring of network, service and customer layers. Comarch OSS will also empower LG U+ Intelligent Assurance & Analytics including an embedded machine learning engine.

The LG U+ contract is an important milestone for Comarch. Supporting one of the first deployments of a commercial 5G network, puts our company at the true forefront of innovation. The delivery of our OSS platform, which comprises close to 20 modules, will bring our customer a world-class, integrated solution enabling the efficient management of services delivered via mobile and fixed networks. Additionally, a major implementation for a key Korean mobile carrier will definitely help us expand our presence on the Asian markets – noted Jacek Lonc, EVP Sales Telco Division at Comarch.

At LG U+ we currently use an in-house developed OSS stack. As the current IT architecture is silo-based, we experience a number of challenges regarding the introduction of new technologies such as 5G and network virtualization. The successful implementation of Comarch’s comprehensive platform will enable us to achieve a competitive advantage and increase business process efficiency – noted Hokyung Kwon, NMS Development Team Leader at LGU+.

Ericsson to acquire CENX

Ericsson to acquire CENX to boost network automation capability.

Ericsson has agreed to acquire 100 percent of the shares in CENX, boosting Ericsson’s Operations Support Systems (OSS) portfolio with vendor-agnostic service assurance and closed-loop automation capability. Ericsson has held a minority stake in CENX since 2012.

Ericsson has a market leading position in NFV and orchestration. This capability will be further enhanced with CENX’s closed-loop automation and service assurance capabilities. To unleash the potential of 5G, telecom operators need to leverage network virtualization and orchestrate and automate network slices to serve the needs of enterprise customers towards their digital transformation – all while reducing operational costs.

Mats Karlsson, Head of Solution Area OSS, Ericsson, says: “Dynamic orchestration is crucial in 5G-ready virtualized networks. By bringing CENX into Ericsson, we can continue to build upon the strong competitive advantage we have started as partners. I look forward to meeting and welcoming our new colleagues into Ericsson.”

Closed-loop automation ensures Ericsson can offer its service provider customers an orchestration solution that is optimised for 5G use cases like network slicing, taking full advantage of Ericsson’s distributed cloud offering. Ericsson’s global sales and delivery presence – along with its strong R&D – will also create economies of scale in the CENX portfolio and help Ericsson to offer in-house solutions for OSS automation and assurance.

Ed Kennedy CEO, CENX says: “Ericsson has been a great partner – and for us to take the step to fully join Ericsson gives us the best possible worldwide platform to realize CENX’s ultimate goal – autonomous networking for all. Our closed-loop service assurance automation capability complements Ericsson’s existing portfolio very well. We look forward to seeing our joint capability add great value to the transformation of both Ericsson and its customers.”

CENX, founded in 2009, is headquartered in Jersey City, New Jersey. The company achieved significant year-over-year revenue growth in the fiscal year that ended December 31, 2017. CENX employs 185 people.

The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals

Telstra hosts “OSS & Networks for the Future architecture” tomorrow

I’m looking forward to dropping in on a “OSS & Networks for the Future architecture” seminar being hosted by Telstra tomorrow. Hope to see you there.

The agenda is as follows:
8:30 Welcome & registration | Johanne Mayer – Moderator (Global evangelist NaaS 2020, Telstra)
9:00 Introduction | Gary Traver (Director Media Product Engineering, Telstra)
9:15 TMF Open Digital Architecture Update |Ken Dilbeck (VP, Collaborative R&D, TM Forum)
10:00 TMF Open API Rel 18.0 | Pierre Gauthier (Chief API architecture, TM Forum)
11:00 Break
11:15 NaaS API Component Suite & Operational Domain Manager (ODM) | Corey Clinger (OSS Expert, Telstra)
11:45 Service Modeling and Exposure | Raman Bhalla (Chief architect NaaS, Telstra)
12:30 Lunch & onsite demo
13:30 MEF Update | Dan Pitt (Senior VP, MEF)
14:15 Closed-Loop Assurance across domains | Paula Rujak (Head of Architecture, Network 2020, Telstra)
14:45 Telstra NaaS Transformation Learning | Guy Lupo (GM, Head of NaaS 2020, Telstra)
15:30 Break
15:45 ETSI ZSM Update | Klaus Martiny (Deutsche Telekom and ETSI ZSM chair)
16:30 Futurism: Who will be Driving your Network? | Guy Lupo (GM, Head of NaaS 2020, Telstra)

Please send us an email if you’d like to get a summary of the event.

Celcom selects Huawei cloud OSS

Celcom Partners with Huawei to Apply a Cloud-Based Platform for Digitized Network Operations.

Celcom Axiata Berhad inked an agreement with Huawei Technologies (Malaysia) Sdn. Bhd. to apply the Cloud-based Digitized Operation Platform, Software as a Service (SaaS) solution.

Celcom will be the first in the country to adopt a full suite cloud-based Operation Support Service (OSS) system to accelerate agility in their automation and the intelligence of network management, and to pave the way for their journey towards becoming a digital company.

The Digitized Operation Platform brings together Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning technology powered by Huawei’s award-winning Operation Web Services (OWS) platform, to enhance Celcom’s capabilities in managing increasingly complex networks and services. It also enables Celcom to transform their daily operations from reactive to proactive and predictive, and further solidify their relentless drive to achieve excellence in customer experience.

The agreement to acquire the platform for Celcom’s network operation was signed by Amandeep Singh, Chief Technology Officer of Celcom Axiata Berhad and Baker Zhouxin, Chief Executive Officer, Huawei Technologies (Malaysia) Sdn. Bhd., and also witnessed by Bassaharil Mohd Yusop, Head of Procurement, Celcom Axiata Berhad and Tang Qibing, President of Global Technical Service Department, Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd.

Through this partnership, Huawei aims to leverage its Digitized Operation AUTomation & INtelligence Services Solution (AUTIN™), and share global experience with Celcom to achieve a visualised, automated and intelligent network operation.

Amandeep Singh, Chief Technology Officer of Celcom Axiata Berhad, said that the partnership signifies Celcom’s ongoing commitment in delivering the best network experience to the customers.

“Celcom will constantly continue the evolution of its network with the latest technologies to bring an awesome experience for Malaysians. It is critical that we explore the capabilities of new generation technology with global partners like Huawei.”

“The Digitized Operation Platform will increase Celcom’s efficacy in managing our daily operations, readiness in managing potential issues and continuous improvements in our network,” he said.

Huawei Global Technical Services President Tang Qibing said, “I’m pleased that Celcom chose Huawei as a partner in its digital transformation journey. We certainly believe that Huawei’s AUTIN™ solution will accelerate Celcom’s transition from traditional operations with repetitive manual processes into automated operations. Our vision is to build an ecosystem with strategic partners like Celcom, third parties and other industries to unlock incredible value through new services and innovations, which will ultimately benefit everyone in the telecommunications industry.”

VMware to acquire Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite

VMware to Acquire Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite.

VMware, Inc. announced a definitive agreement to acquire the technology and team of Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite – software spanning network health, performance monitoring and root cause analysis for communications service providers (CSPs) and their customers – from Dell EMC. The addition of the Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite technology to the VMware Telco NFV portfolio equips CSPs with the ability to maintain operational reliability in their core network, cloud, and IT domains across physical and virtual infrastructure—enabling them to operationalize competitive new services faster.

As customers bridge current services from 4G to 5G, service assurance becomes critical. The Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite provides automated capabilities to operators via accurate root cause analysis management. VMware, a leader in network functions virtualization (NFV) infrastructure, will leverage the Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite to help customers accelerate their virtual network function deployments with end-to-end service assurance once the deal closes.

The Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite team adds a deep bench of talent with engineering expertise and 10+ years of customer relationships. The core Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite offering is already well known to CSPs for its superior troubleshooting capabilities. More than 50 CSPs worldwide, including many Tier 1 operators, leverage Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite capabilities to enable new services for a range of customers, including enterprises, federal and local governments. Upon the deal closing, VMware plans to invest in growing the capabilities of the platform as a key component in the Telco NFV portfolio and focusing on modernization and intelligent automation. After the deal closes, Dell EMC customers will continue to have access to the Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite’s solutions pursuant to a commercial reseller agreement in place between VMware and Dell EMC.

Faced with top-line and bottom-line pressures, operators are moving from a packaged hardware approach to an NFV-driven, software-defined approach for their core network environments. While this move is critical to operators’ ability to deliver agile services and capitalize upon new opportunities, their capacity to virtualize quickly is hampered by a lack of effective root cause analysis. This is an increasingly important area of focus, given the rapid changes happening in operator networks as they deploy 4G services like Voice Over LTE (VoLTE) and prepare for 5G-driven advanced applications supporting IoT, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality.

The Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite provides assurance capabilities to deliver service impact and root-cause analysis with visibility across physical and virtual networks, and cloud environments, to identify how resources are being consumed and whether service level agreements are being met. This transparency enables CSPs to visualize, analyze and optimize their environments to enable faster resolution times; proactive identification of issues is proven to provide better return on NFV and IT investments. The Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite is complemented by leading VMware technologies, including VMware vCloud NFV, VMware vRealize Operations, VMware vRealize Network Insight, Wavefront by VMware and VMware NSX SD-WAN by VeloCloud.

This acquisition demonstrates VMware’s growing commitment to the telecommunications industry. It also reinforces the “better together” synergy between VMware and Dell EMC. Additionally, CSP customers will benefit from the combination of VMware and Dell EMC solutions.

“As carriers are readying for 5G, they are increasingly virtualizing edge and core networks with network functions virtualization, or NFV. Service assurance is a critical need for any network. The Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite’s established software and services capabilities, combined with VMware’s trademark innovation, will empower CSPs to modernize and accelerate the transformation of their networks through NFV upon closing,” said Shekar Ayyar, executive vice president, Strategy and Corporate Development and General Manager Telco NFV Group, VMware. “The Dell EMC Service Assurance Suite team is primed to accelerate our NFV business and help drive it forward with unprecedented service assurance.”

The Pentagon creates a “Do Not Buy” list? Including OSS vendors?

Pentagon Creates ‘Do Not Buy’ List of Russian, Chinese Software.

The Pentagon is working on a software “do not buy” list to block vendors who use software code originating from Russia and China, a top Defense Department acquisitions official said on Friday.

Apparently The The Pentagon started compiling the list about six months ago. Suspicious companies are put on a list that is circulated to the military’s software buyers. Now the Pentagon is working with the three major defense industry trade associations — the Aerospace industries Association, National Defense Industrial Association and Professional Services Council — to alert contractors small and large.

Does anyone know whether there are any OSS vendors on this list? One would assume that Huawei and ZTE Soft would be. Who else?

Irby partners with Biarri Networks

Irby Announces Partnership with Biarri Networks.

Irby, a subsidiary of Sonepar, announced an innovative partnership with Biarri Networks, global provider of OSP fiber optic network design software and services.

Irby named Biarri Networks as its fiber optic design and engineering partner following an extensive selection process, with the key criteria being cultural fit, contribution to the industry, and a proven history of innovation in the telecom sector.

The impact of this partnership has been immediate, with an initial project realizing significant savings: 400 miles less fiber will be installed than originally estimated, with cost savings of around US$5.5 million. This is a direct benefit to a rural community of around 90,000 people.

The innovative Irby-Biarri approach uses geospatial data, along with pre-defined architectural and underlying business rules, then algorithmically automates and optimizes the design process—right from concept and high-level design through to the point of construction pack delivery.

“This partnership positions Irby to support the rollout of fiber optic networks to their customers and communities more swiftly and affordably than ever before,” said Paul Sulisz, SVP of Americas, Biarri Networks. “It’s a huge win for rural America.”

Geff Smith, VP Technology and Communications for Irby said, “With Biarri as our design partner we have far better certainty of, and visibility over, the cost and revenue profile for our customers looking to build broadband networks.”
“This level of clarity lets us balance budget costs with service delivery to improve our IRR (Internal Rate of Return),” he added. Having such a high degree of accuracy in a project’s valuation so early on also supports critical CapEx investment decisions, such as grants, VC, RUS, and CAF II.

“The innovation that we bring to OSP design and engineering really turns the traditional approach on its head and allows for a focus on specific community needs and business outcomes. When we can make these key drivers, it’s awesome to see the right networks built better, and delivered faster, all for a much lower cost,” said Paul Sulisz, SVP of Americas, Biarri Networks.

Broadcom buys CA Technologies

Weirdest. Acquisition. Ever. Broadcom buys CA Technologies.

Broadcom to Acquire CA Technologies for $18.9 Billion in Cash.

Broadcom Inc., a semiconductor device supplier to the wired, wireless, enterprise storage, and industrial end markets, and CA Technologies, [a] provider of information technology (IT) management software and solutions, announced that the companies have entered into a definitive agreement under which Broadcom has agreed to acquire CA to build one of the world’s leading infrastructure technology companies.

Under the terms of the agreement, which has been approved by the boards of directors of both companies, CA’s shareholders will receive $44.50 per share in cash. This represents a premium of approximately 20% to the closing price of CA common stock on July 11, 2018, the last trading day prior to the transaction announcement, and a premium of approximately 23% to CA’s volume-weighted average price (“VWAP”) for the last 30 trading days. The all-cash transaction represents an equity value of approximately $18.9 billion, and an enterprise value of approximately $18.4 billion.

Hock Tan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Broadcom, said, “This transaction represents an important building block as we create one of the world’s leading infrastructure technology companies. With its sizeable installed base of customers, CA is uniquely positioned across the growing and fragmented infrastructure software market, and its mainframe and enterprise software franchises will add to our portfolio of mission critical technology businesses. We intend to continue to strengthen these franchises to meet the growing demand for infrastructure software solutions.”

“We are excited to have reached this definitive agreement with Broadcom,” said Mike Gregoire, CA Technologies Chief Executive Officer. “This combination aligns our expertise in software with Broadcom’s leadership in the semiconductor industry. The benefits of this agreement extend to our shareholders who will receive a significant and immediate premium for their shares, as well as our employees who will join an organization that shares our values of innovation, collaboration and engineering excellence. We look forward to completing the transaction and ensuring a smooth transition.”

The transaction is expected to drive Broadcom’s long-term Adjusted EBITDA margins above 55% and be immediately accretive to Broadcom’s non-GAAP EPS. On a combined basis, Broadcom expects to have last twelve months non-GAAP revenues of approximately $23.9 billion and last twelve months non-GAAP Adjusted EBITDA of approximately $11.6 billion.

As a global leader in mainframe and enterprise software, CA’s solutions help organizations of all sizes develop, manage, and secure complex IT environments that increase productivity and enhance competitiveness. CA leverages its learnings and development expertise across its Mainframe and Enterprise Solutions businesses, resulting in cross enterprise, multi-platform support for customers. The majority of CA’s largest customers transact with CA across both its Mainframe and Enterprise Solutions portfolios. CA benefits from predictable and recurring revenues with the average duration of bookings exceeding three years. CA operates across 40 countries and currently holds more than 1,500 patents worldwide, with more than 950 patents pending.

Financing and Path to Completion

Broadcom intends to fund the transaction with cash on hand and $18.0 billion in new, fully-committed debt financing. Broadcom expects to maintain an investment grade rating, given its strong cash flow generation and intention to rapidly de-leverage.

The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including the approval of CA shareholders and antitrust approvals in the U.S., the EU and Japan.

Careal Property Group AG and affiliates, who collectively own approximately 25% of the outstanding shares of CA common stock, have entered into a voting agreement to vote in favor of the transaction.

The closing of the transaction is expected to occur in the fourth calendar quarter of 2018.

Optus selects Subex

Subex wins multi-million-dollar contract from Optus To deploy its ROC Network Asset Management solution.

Subex, a telecom analytics solution provider, has won a multi-million-dollar contract with Optus, Australia to implement its ROC Network Asset Management solution.

Optus is one of the largest telecom operators in Australia and a fully owned subsidiary of Singtel. They offer mobile, enterprise and wholesale services and home entertainment, exclusive content including EPL.

Subex was selected after successfully demonstrating its strong domain expertise and unique value proposition while showcasing the superiority of its solution. As part of the deal, Subex’s ROC Network Asset Management will enable Optus to control all of its existing and new network investments through a well-defined network efficiency framework. This implementation will further help Optus to protect their network investments, improve utilisation visibility and provide better financial controls.

“We are excited to partner with Optus for enabling Subex’s ROC Network Asset Management solution. This win allows us to increase our footprint in the Australian market and for our ROC Network Asset Management product, which is a testament to our Subex 3.0 strategy. Moreover, the partnership will also play a larger role in the industry by providing guiding principles for cost management for global operators who are looking to undergo a network upgrade program” said Vinod Kumar, CEO and Managing Director, Subex.

Commenting on the development, an Optus spokesperson said, “We have designed a Network Assurance program that will ensure clear visibility across the complete lifecycle of the program. In line with this, we were looking for a collaborative partnership to implement an Asset Lifecycle Management system. Subex was selected for this deployment basis due to their domain expertise and successful deployment at other global customers”.

Subex ROC Network Asset Management is a Telecom Asset Lifecycle Management solution which provides a framework and controls to manage Network Capex efficiently. The solution also provides standardized processes for managing and optimizing network assets. The solution ties together the financial parameters of assets with current utilization and location, thus creating a 360o view of the asset. This enables effective validation of requests for Capex spend, generation of accurate reports for audits and better calculation of return on assets. The solution creates opportunities to generate free cash flow by identifying end-of-life assets for monetization.

Microsoft to acquire GitHub

Microsoft to acquire GitHub for $7.5 billion.

Microsoft Corp. announced it has reached an agreement to acquire GitHub, the world’s leading software development platform where more than 28 million developers learn, share and collaborate to create the future. Together, the two companies will empower developers to achieve more at every stage of the development lifecycle, accelerate enterprise use of GitHub, and bring Microsoft’s developer tools and services to new audiences.

“Microsoft is a developer-first company, and by joining forces with GitHub we strengthen our commitment to developer freedom, openness and innovation,” said Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft. “We recognize the community responsibility we take on with this agreement and will do our best work to empower every developer to build, innovate and solve the world’s most pressing challenges.”

Under the terms of the agreement, Microsoft will acquire GitHub for $7.5 billion in Microsoft stock. Subject to customary closing conditions and completion of regulatory review, the acquisition is expected to close by the end of the calendar year.

GitHub will retain its developer-first ethos and will operate independently to provide an open platform for all developers in all industries. Developers will continue to be able to use the programming languages, tools and operating systems of their choice for their projects — and will still be able to deploy their code to any operating system, any cloud and any device.

Microsoft Corporate Vice President Nat Friedman, founder of Xamarin and an open source veteran, will assume the role of GitHub CEO. GitHub’s current CEO, Chris Wanstrath, will become a Microsoft technical fellow, reporting to Executive Vice President Scott Guthrie, to work on strategic software initiatives.

“I’m extremely proud of what GitHub and our community have accomplished over the past decade, and I can’t wait to see what lies ahead. The future of software development is bright, and I’m thrilled to be joining forces with Microsoft to help make it a reality,” Wanstrath said. “Their focus on developers lines up perfectly with our own, and their scale, tools and global cloud will play a huge role in making GitHub even more valuable for developers everywhere.”

Today, every company is becoming a software company and developers are at the center of digital transformation; they drive business processes and functions across organizations from customer service and HR to marketing and IT. And the choices these developers make will increasingly determine value creation and growth across every industry. GitHub is home for modern developers and the world’s most popular destination for open source projects and software innovation. The platform hosts a growing network of developers in nearly every country representing more than 1.5 million companies across healthcare, manufacturing, technology, financial services, retail and more.

Upon closing, Microsoft expects GitHub’s financials to be reported as part of the Intelligent Cloud segment. Microsoft expects the acquisition will be accretive to operating income in fiscal year 2020 on a non-GAAP basis, and to have minimal dilution of less than 1 percent to earnings per share in fiscal years 2019 and 2020 on a non-GAAP basis, based on the expected close time frame. Non-GAAP excludes expected impact of purchase accounting adjustments, as well as integration and transaction-related expenses. An incremental share buyback, beyond Microsoft’s recent historical quarterly pace, is expected to offset stock consideration paid within six months after closing. Microsoft will use a portion of the remaining ~$30 billion of its current share repurchase authorization for the purchase.

Further rebukes for Trump and ZTE

First ZTE was banned, then given a lifeline by President Trump, but then Trump has also been rebuked.

The House Appropriations Committee unanimously accepted an amendment to an appropriations bill on Thursday that reinforces sanctions against Chinese telecommunications company ZTE, a rebuke to President Trump, who earlier this week tweeted support for the company.” reported TheHill.com.

AT&T, SKT and Intel to Launch a New Open Infrastructure Project, Airship

AT&T Working With SKT and Intel to Launch a New Open Infrastructure Project, Airship.

As part of our ongoing commitment to open and collaborative innovation, we’re working with SKT, Intel Corporation and the OpenStack Foundation to launch a new open infrastructure project called Airship. This project builds on the foundation laid by the OpenStack-Helm project launched in 2017. It lets cloud operators manage sites at every stage from creation through minor and major updates, including configuration changes and OpenStack upgrades. It does all this through a unified, declarative, fully containerized, and cloud-native platform.

Simply put, Airship lets you build a cloud easier than ever before. Whether you’re a telecom, manufacturer, health care provider, or an individual developer, Airship makes it easy to predictably build and manage cloud infrastructure.

It’s built using microservices, which we think are the future of software development, and embraces cloud native principles out of the box. This lets each Airship microservice perform one specific role in the cloud delivery and management process, and do it well. The ultimate goal of Airship is to help operators take hardware from loading dock to an OpenStack cloud, all while ensuring first-class life cycle management of that cloud once it enters production.

The initial focus of this project is the implementation of a declarative platform to introduce OpenStack on Kubernetes (OOK) and the lifecycle management of the resulting cloud, with the scale, speed, resiliency, flexibility, and operational predictability demanded of network clouds.

“Declarative” might be a new term to some readers. But it’s a simple concept with huge benefits. In a nutshell, every aspect of your cloud is defined in standardized documents that give you extremely flexible and fine grain control of your cloud infrastructure.  You simply manage the documents themselves and submit them and the platform takes care of the rest. This includes determining what has changed since the last submission and orchestrating those changes.

AT&T is contributing code for Airship that started in collaboration with SKT, Intel and a number of other companies in 2017. It’s the foundation of AT&T’s network cloud that will run our 5G core supporting the late 2018 launch of 5G service in 12 cities. Airship will also be used by Akraino Edge Stack, which is a new Linux Foundation project. Akraino is intended to create an open source software stack supporting high-availability cloud services optimized for edge computing systems and applications.

Airship will fuel and accelerate our Network AI initiative which houses several of our other open source projects. We want to build and nurture an open ecosystem of developers who can work together to advance this technology and deploy it within their own organizations.

Ryan van Wyk, assistant vice president of Cloud Platform Development at AT&T Labs, describes it like this: “Airship is going to allow AT&T and other operators to deliver cloud infrastructure predictably that is 100% declarative, where Day Zero is managed the same as future updates via a single unified workflow, and where absolutely everything is a container from the bare metal up.”

Ryan and his team will follow this blog post with a more in-depth introduction to project Airship in the next few days.

“We are pleased to bring continued innovation with Airship, extending the work we started in 2016 with the OpenStack and Kubernetes communities to create a continuum for modern and open infrastructure. Airship will bring new network edge capabilities to these stacks and Intel is committed to working with this project and the many other upstream projects to continue our focus of upstream first development and accelerating the industry.” – Imad Sousou, corporate vice president and general manager of the Open Source Technology Center at Intel

To get involved in this new Open Infrastructure Project for OpenStack, please attend one of the OpenStack Vancouver Summit talks, or go to airshipit.org.

Oracle buys DataScience.com

Oracle Buys DataScience.com.

Oracle announced that it has signed an agreement to acquire DataScience.com, whose platform centralizes data science tools, projects and infrastructure in a fully-governed workspace.

Data science teams use the platform to organize work, easily access data and computing resources, and execute end-to-end model development workflows. Leading organizations like Amgen, Rio Tinto, and Sonos are using the DataScience.com platform to improve productivity, reduce operational costs and deploy machine learning solutions faster to power their digital transformations.

DataScience.com empowers data scientists to deliver the business-changing insights executives expect in less time with self-service access to open source tools, data and computing resources, while also improving the ability of IT teams to support that work. Oracle embeds Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning capabilities across its software as a service (SaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS) solutions, including big data, analytics and security operations, to enable digital transformations. Together, Oracle and DataScience.com will provide customers with a single data science platform that leverages Oracle Cloud Infrastructure and the breadth of Oracle’s integrated SaaS and PaaS offerings to help them realize the full potential of machine learning.

“Every organization is now exploring data science and machine learning as a key way to proactively develop competitive advantage, but the lack of comprehensive tooling and integrated machine learning capabilities can cause these projects to fall short,” said Amit Zavery, Executive Vice President of Oracle Cloud Platform, Oracle. “With the combination of Oracle and DataScience.com, customers will be able to harness a single data science platform to more effectively leverage machine learning and big data for predictive analysis and improved business results.”

“Data science requires a comprehensive platform to simplify operations and deliver value at scale,” said Ian Swanson, CEO of DataScience.com. “With DataScience.com, customers leverage a robust, easy-to-use platform that removes barriers to deploying valuable machine learning models in production. We are extremely enthusiastic about joining forces with Oracle’s leading cloud platform so customers can realize the benefits of their investments in data science.”

DGIT Systems acquires Inomial

DGIT Systems acquires billing systems vendor Inomial.

DGIT Systems announced the acquisition of Inomial Pty Ltd. Inomial Pty Ltd is a Billing Systems Vendor with a strong customer base predominantly located in the Asia Pacific region.

“Inomial’s suite of billing related products complement DGITs award winning Telflow Service Delivery Platform”, Greg Tilton CEO DGIT Systems said today. “The acquisition of Inomial provides us with a significant value- our offer now supports a full-service proposition for our customers delivered as a cloud or on – premises option.”

The combined Telflow and Inomial value proposition provides a realisation of the TM Forum Open Digital Architecture powered by TM Forum Open API’s to provide solutions spanning from digital customer channels to virtualised networks.

DGIT Systems and Inomial have worked together as strategic partners with a common group of customers for some time and collaboration between the R&D programs have both produce suites aligned on a dynamic microservices architecture in keeping with the very latest in IT Architecture thinking. DGITs acquisition will facilitate a seamless Quote-to-Order-to-Activate-to-Bill to cover complex enterprise network solutions, managed services and B2B integrated domestic or global wholesale.

Michael Lawrey, Chairman at DGIT Systems welcomed Inomial Pty Ltd founder Mark Lillywhite to the Board of DGIT Systems noting that “Mark’s ongoing involvement and contribution to DGIT Systems through his role as a Board member and Head of the Billing Systems Division will be invaluable and further strengthen our leadership in this space. DGIT is on a mission to provide the most capable Quote-to-Cash and Order-to-Activate platform for the Telco and Service Provider industries.”

HPE buys Plexxi

HPE to Acquire Plexxi.

Ric Lewis of HPE writes in his blog…
Our customers live in a hybrid world, running a mix of workloads on traditional IT, as well as private, managed and public clouds. They need to be able to move at cloud-like speed, regardless of where the data lives. HPE is focused on delivering a portfolio of products and services that simplify hybrid IT, helping customers to move faster and to drive business value.

Today, I’m thrilled to announce that we are taking another important step to deliver on this promise of simplification and speed: we’ve reached an agreement to acquire Plexxi, a leading provider of software-defined data fabric networking technology. The company was founded in 2010 and is focused on enabling data center modernization and hybrid cloud with its software-defined data fabric.

Plexxi’s technology will extend HPE’s market-leading software-defined compute and storage capabilities into the high-growth, software-defined networking market, expanding our addressable market and strengthening our offerings for customers and partners. By seamlessly combining Plexxi’s next-generation data center fabric with HPE’s existing software-defined infrastructure, HPE can deliver a true cloud-like experience in the data center. Through this acquisition, we will deliver hyperconverged and composable solutions with a next-generation data network fabric that can automatically create or re-balance bandwidth to workload needs. This will increase agility and efficiency, and accelerate how quickly companies deploy applications and draw business value from their data.

We see two clear opportunities to integrate Plexxi’s innovative technology:

First, we intend to integrate Plexxi technology into our hyperconverged solutions. Building on last year’s SimpliVity acquisition, Plexxi will enable us to deliver the industry’s only hyperconverged offering that incorporates compute, storage and data fabric networking into a single solution, with a single management interface and support. The combined HPE SimpliVity plus Plexxi solution will provide customers with a highly dynamic workload-based model to better align IT resources to business priorities. HPE’s hyperconverged business has been growing at four times the market and HPE was recently named a leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for hyperconverged. With Plexxi, we’ll be able to extend this lead over the competition.

Second, Plexxi’s technology will extend our composable infrastructure portfolio, called HPE Synergy. Composable infrastructure, built on HPE OneView, is a new category of infrastructure that delivers fluid pools of storage and compute resources that can be composed and recomposed as business needs dictate. In the near future with Plexxi, we will deliver a composable rack solution that will seamlessly extend our composable fabric to a broader set of use cases across the data center.”

Verizon to move 1,000+ apps to AWS

Verizon is migrating over 1,000 business-critical applications and database backend systems to AWS.
Courtesy of Businesswire.

Amazon Web Services announced that Verizon Communications has selected AWS as its preferred public cloud provider. Verizon is migrating over 1,000 business-critical applications and database backend systems to AWS, several of which also include the migration of production databases to Amazon Aurora—AWS’s relational database engine that combines the speed and availability of high-end commercial databases with the simplicity and cost-effectiveness of open source databases.

Verizon first started working with AWS in 2015 and has several successful business and consumer applications already running in the cloud. This latest wave of migrations to AWS is part of a corporate-wide initiative at Verizon to increase agility and reduce costs through the use of cloud computing. Standardizing on AWS will enable Verizon to access the most comprehensive set of cloud capabilities available today so it can deliver innovative applications and services in hours versus weeks. To ensure that Verizon’s developers are able to invent on behalf of its customers, the company has also invested in building AWS-specific training facilities, called “dojos,” where its employees can quickly ramp up on AWS technologies and learn how to innovate with speed and at scale.

“We are making the public cloud a core part of our digital transformation, upgrading our database management approach to replace our proprietary solutions with Amazon Aurora,” said Mahmoud El-Assir, Senior Vice President of Global Technology Services at Verizon. “The agility we’ve gained by moving to the world’s leading public cloud has helped us better serve our customers. Working with AWS complements our focus on efficiency, speed, and innovation within our engineering culture, and has enabled us to quickly deliver the best, most efficient customer experiences.”

“Millions of consumers and businesses rely on Verizon to communicate and connect them to every corner of the world at a time when the stakes have never been higher to keep customers satisfied and engaged,” said Mike Clayville, Vice President, Worldwide Commercial Sales at AWS. “We look forward to continuing our work with Verizon as their preferred public cloud provider, helping them to continually transform their business and innovate on behalf of their customers. The combination of Verizon’s team of builders with AWS’s extensive portfolio of cloud services and expertise means that Verizon’s options for delighting their customers is virtually unlimited.”

ZTE lifeline from Trump?

News last week of ZTE ceasing major operations due to US embargoes have taken another turn.

President Trump has now tweeted,”President Xi of China, and I, are working together to give massive Chinese phone company, ZTE, a way to get back into business, fast. Too many jobs in China lost. Commerce Department has been instructed to get it done!

What will be the next twist in this saga?

Sigma Systems signs with Telkomsel

Sigma Systems Supports Telkomsel in Building a Digital Indonesia.

Sigma Systems, announced a major deal with Indonesia’s leading mobile network operator, Telkomsel.

With more than 190 million customers, Telkomsel is currently the largest mobile operator in Indonesia. Telkomsel has consistently implemented the latest mobile technology and was the first to commercially launch 4G LTE mobile services in the country. Entering the digital era, Telkomsel continues to expand its digital business to incorporate advertising, lifestyle, mobile financial services, and Internet of Things.

In support of their digital mandate, Telkomsel has selected Sigma Systems as a partner, establishing Sigma Catalog as the central enterprise catalog to underpin their evolving business.

“We are pleased to partner with Sigma to deploy a B/OSS platform that enables the rapid creation of personalized, micro-segmented offers to our customers. Sigma’s agile delivery methodology and product-centric approach ultimately supports Telkomsel’s mission of building a Digital Indonesia,” said Montgomery Hong, CIO at Telkomsel.

Sigma Systems CEO, Tim Spencer, commented: “Telkomsel is at the forefront of digital transformation in the region, and recognizes the critical role a catalog-driven solution plays in accelerating the creation, selling and delivery of innovative and deeply personalized market offerings. Sigma is honored to work with Indonesia’s leading mobile operator as they transition into a truly digital business.”