The telecommunications world was full of SDN and NFV news this week as Verizon unveiled major advances in its open source partnership, and competition heated up in the IoT world of low-power, wide-area (LPWA) network technologies.
Here's a wrap-up of some highlights:
Verizon disclosed more details of its network functions virtualization (NFV) architecture at the OpenStack Summit in Austin this week, billing the implementation as the industry's largest known NFV OpenStack cloud deployment. The discussion focused on the OpenStack pod-based design, plus the way Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) and partners Red Hat Inc. (NYSE: RHT), Dell Technologies (Nasdaq: DELL) and
Big Switch Networks will integrate open source elements to provide the resiliency, security and visibility a carrier network requires -- with network and bandwidth flexibility. All four partners designed the pod, reports Light Reading's Carol Wilson, going from concept to deployment in less than nine months. (See: Verizon NFV Plan Pushes OpenStack Forward.)
A battle broke out earlier this week, when the LoRa Alliance disputed charges rival Sigfox leveled, which basically accused LoRa of "being a proprietary tool masquerading as an open system," as Light Reading's Iain Morris writes in "LoRa Alliance Defends Tech Against Sigfox Slur." The two technologies use unlicensed spectrum -- especially attractive in the growing Internet of Things (IoT) market. While the industry regards Sigfox as proprietary tech from France,
LoRa presents itself as open in nature due its ecosystem. But, charges Sigfox, LoRa technology is "entirely proprietary and owned by Semtech," a Calilfornia-based semiconductor company and "sponsor member" of the LoRa Alliance behind LoRa technology. (See: Sigfox Slams 'Proprietary' LoRa, Costly LTE.)
In related news, Vodafone predicts the emerging NB-IoT standard will sound the death knell for Sigfox, LoRa and other rivals that rely on unlicensed spectrum to support services. For its part, NB-IoT uses licensed-spectrum technologies to overcome distance and power limitations associated with mainstream cell standards in Internet of Things settings. (See: Vodafone to 'Crush' LoRa, Sigfox With NB-IoT.)
But so-called low-power, wide-area (LPWA) network rivals have been busy: Sigfox says it's got networks rolling out in 17 nations, while LoRa supporters include
Orange (NYSE: FTE) and Bouygues Telecom. Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD) this week opened an NB-IoT lab in the UK in partnership with Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd.
The New IP Agency says 13 companies recently signed up for its Phase 3 interop which begins on May 2 will test SDN/NFV service chaining. New participants include: ADTRAN; ADVA Optical Networks; Ciena; Dell; Dorado Software; Fortinet; Gigamon; InfoBlox; Ixia; Juniper; NetNumber and Sonus Networks. (See: Lucky 13 Sign Up for NIA's Next Interop.)
Finally, service provider engineers looking to learn about NFV now can access GigaSpaces Technologies' NFV Lab, a functional OpenStack environment on demand, with the orchestration and vIMS Clearwater VNF installed and integrated. Cloudify provides VNF orchestration using its open source, TOSCA-based cloud orchestration platform, and the NFV Lab uses the Ravello platform to virtualize testing environments.
GigaSpaces Technologies Ltd. provides user training, including education on Clearwater, Cloudify and OpenStack.
— Alison Diana, Editor, The New IP. Follow her on Twitter @alisoncdiana or @The_New_IP.