Tektronix Communications sees NFV and SDN as key to next generation networks

May 18, 2015 //By Ravi Chittimoori, Tektronix Communications
NFV (Network Function Virtualisation) and SDN (Software Defined Networks) are gaining traction with mobile operators and are considered key to delivering next-generation networks on the road to 5G. It is expected that when 5G eventually rolls out it will fully implement NFV and SDN. Already with LTE, there are many benefits besides cost reduction for those mobile operators moving in this direction.

In fact recently, Verizon, working closely with a number of its key technology partners — Alcatel-Lucent, Cisco, Ericsson, Juniper Networks and Nokia Networks — has announced that it is transforming its network by implementing a software defined network architecture, laying the groundwork for new innovative services and applications. According to the company, SDN-based architecture is designed to introduce new operational efficiencies and allow for the enablement of rapid and flexible service delivery to its customers.

In the following Q/A Ravi Chittimoori, Senior Product Manager and lead on network virtualization and NFV at Tektronix Communications highlights the issues and benefits around NFV and SDN.

What are the key drivers behind network virtualisation and the adoption of NFV/SDN?

Mobile operators are no strangers to change. The launch and evolution of LTE in recent years has required a steady stream of investment to improve network architecture and keep up with the explosion in subscriber data usage. However, despite this costly and time-consuming process, operators still find themselves facing flattening ARPUs and growing competition from OTT players – which has led to a monumental shift in the telecoms landscape.

One of the responses to these challenges that has gained a lot of traction in 2014 has been the move to a virtualised network environment through NFV and SDN. Adopting virtualization approaches gives operators the ability to roll out new services and features in day/weeks rather than months/years. This added “business agility” is extremely crucial to the operators when competing with OTT players. By using the orchestration capabilities of these NFV/SDN compliant solutions, operators also can significantly reduce their OPEX.


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