This is a co-authored blog with Kevin Shatzkamer, Mobile CTO, Brocade and Marc Price, CTO Americas, Openet
As the networking industry continues to embrace network function virtualization (NFV) as a long-term architectural target, mobile operators continue to analyze how and where it makes sense to incorporate NFV into their technology and operations plans. The promise of NFV is enormous – enabling service providers to scale flexibility in resources to fluctuations in demand, reducing time to market for new products and services, reducing capital and operating expenses through economies of scale, and encouraging open ecosystems to accelerate innovation. While operators are anxious to realize these goals, the long-term architecture of NFV is difficult to deconstruct into practical short-term steps with quantifiable benefits. Thus, a major challenge facing mobile operators is how quickly to integrate, deploy, and operate NFV when it represents a significant CAPEX investment and operational paradigm shift.
Brocade and Openet have partnered together with exactly this goal: delivering solutions that providing quantifiable and recognizable benefits to specific operator challenges. Combining the expertise of Brocade in delivering virtual network functions and Openet’s expertise in policy management and lifecycle management for virtualized network functions, these pre-integrated solutions are specifically focused on Machine to Machine (M2M) and Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) / Mobile Virtual Network Enablers (MVNEs).
Delivering an integrated, tested, multi-vendor M2M and MVNO “NFV in a Box” solution lowers the adoption risk for mobile operators, helps match the economics of the M2M and MVNO business models to CAPEX investment, and provides a platform with a well-understood scale and performance. The Brocade and Openet solution means that operators do not need to invest end-to-end in NFV infrastructure, and can instead deploy NFV into specific use-cases and applications with the benefit of NFV readiness.
The solutions are enabled by the following components:
The Brocade and Openet solutions for MVNOs/MVNEs and M2M providers are designed specifically to match the economics of their respective business models. These solutions leverage NFV readiness making them easily deployable, with application-specific capacity and performance, and with simple integrations into the existing network infrastructure.
These solutions are designed to deliver technology that allows a MVNO, MVNE, or a mobile operator delivering a MVNE platform, to launch their services quickly, comprising a 3GPP-compliant LTE Evolved Packet Core (EPC) infrastructure for MVNOs or MVNEs, or for mobile network operators that deliver MVNE platforms.
The turnkey solution includes key 3GPP-compliant EPC functions including vPGW, vHSS and dynamic policy controls enabled via a vPCRF. In addition, important network functions, such as virtual routing, network firewall, NAT, and Deep Packet Inspection (DPI) are all included. Orchestration and workflow management, as well as service function chaining, are supported by the NFV-O, VNF-M and EMS components. There is also a “single pane of glass” for management and operations support for the Brocade and Openet solution.
These solutions are similar to the ones described above, and are targeted at dedicated M2M service providers, cloud providers of M2M services leveraging mobile networks, and MNOs who offer their own M2M services.
In addition to the virtual EPC, routing and security components, and the complete management and orchestration capabilities described above, these solutions also provide external M2M providers with access (e.g., Diameter Rx) to some vEPC functions.
A Relationship for Innovation
In addition to current solutions, Brocade and Openet intend to continue with joint development and validation of solutions for mobile networks, including deeper integration of Brocade and Openet technology to provide solutions to SDN-based Service Function Chaining, compliant with 3GPP Flexible Mobile Service Steering (FMSS) and network visibility and analytics-based policy decisions.
Mobile operators are seeking quick wins with NVF, providing immediate benefits and impact with solutions such as MVNO/MVNE and M2M/IoT. Brocade and Openet understand how to deliver these solutions today, and can help mobile operators on the right path towards their networks of tomorrow.
Request a meeting at Mobile World Congress to see a demo and learn more about the Brocade & Openet NFV solution.