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Nexius Solutions 2014 Predictions - The Year of the Network Operator Cloud

VMblog 2014 Prediction Series

Virtualization and Cloud executives share their predictions for 2014.  Read them in this VMblog.com series exclusive.

Contributed article by Jim Hudmon, cloud and data services delivery manager at Nexius Solutions, Inc.

2014: The Year of the Network Operator Cloud

2014 will be the year of the network cloud for operators, where services lead software in a valued virtualization market. This means more focus on network functions virtualization (NFV) and software defined networking (SDN) along with the growth of unified communications as a service (UCaaS).

As we came in to 2013, software defined networking and network functions virtualization were new areas in the telecom industry. As we leave 2013, we have seen new focus in operators moving to software defined network services and new planning for moving portions of their network to virtualization. So what can you expect from 2014?

Making Room for High Value Applications

First, we will start seeing significant trials for SDN/NFV solutions, with initial focus on application policy, QoS systems, and network controllers. These trials and solutions will formally start the revenue curve for SDN/NFV solutions in the telecommunications market.

This shift for operators is fueled by SDN network standards that have matured over the last two years for the enterprise market. This evolution has made it possible for operators to consider SDN/NFV solutions in managing heavy bandwidth and higher QoS-based applications such as voice and video. SDN opens up the ability for a high bandwidth, high value application to have more control of its policy, QoS and bandwidth through the network. NFV efforts are defining how the network frees up network resources in real time for multiple applications being delivered through the network, such as compute, process and storage.  The two standard efforts define how the operators free up services for high value applications. SDN/NFV will open up new revenue streams from both the content provider and consumers for new valued applications.

What is driving these changes? New LTE networks are being deployed, and LTE networks can now deliver higher bandwidth-consuming multi-media services like videos, webinars and teaching paradigms. Therefore, operators running these services over LTE networks need very cost effective, efficient networks in place to manage these new applications, especially with new and upcoming applications and content coming to market for mobile phones and tablets.

UCaaS: Bringing It All Under One Roof

Another key area in 2014 that is going to have significant momentum is unified communication as a service. This is going to mature as an offered service, especially through partners of the operators. Though some operators will bring this in house as they mature their cloud networks and their cloud offering, most will partner with vendors and cloud service partners.

What UCaaS brings to the operators is the ability to offer true convergence of voice, video and content file-sharing applications that they can offer to both consumers and enterprises. UCaaS gives operators the ability to offer a standard unified communications experience across all devices in the network.

In 2014, UCaaS will enhance enterprise mobility. UCaaS also enables enterprises to transform their customer care environment so that customer care services will become much more interactive whether through social, video chatting or simply web calling into a customer care representative. UCaaS opens up new options for operators to offer new services in this market.

You can also expect to see UCaaS converge with web real-time communication (WebRTC). Through WebRTC, operators can offer the ability for PCs, mobile devices and tablets to have embedded converged communication services. When you look at what WebRTC is bringing from a client OS evolution and how that can be integrated with UCaaS, it shows a very powerful service coming into the market in 2014.

Overall, what we are seeing for 2014 is that the network operator cloud is very real. Significant investments and trials are changing the competitive landscape across the industry as both vendors and operators shift to what the network value means to their enterprise and consumer offerings.

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About the Author

Jim Hudmon is cloud and data services delivery manager at Nexius Solutions, Inc., a provider delivering end-to-end wireless services and software solutions. For more information, visit http://www.nexius.com, Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NexiusInc, Twitter: http://twitter.com/NexiusInc, and LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/company/nexius.
Published Tuesday, November 05, 2013 6:29 AM by David Marshall
Comments
Nexius Publishes "2014: The Year of the Network Operator Cloud" in VMblog | Nexius - (Author's Link) - November 5, 2013 5:00 PM
2014: The Year of the Network Operator Cloud | Nexius - (Author's Link) - February 19, 2014 8:41 AM
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