Virtualization Technology News and Information
Ciena 2015 Predictions: The year on-demand services take off, open networking frameworks stabilize and SDN and NFV push forward


Virtualization and Cloud executives share their predictions for 2015.  Read them in this series exclusive.

Contributed article by Chris Janz, VP & CTO, Ciena Agility

2015: The year on-demand services take off, open networking frameworks stabilize and SDN and NFV push forward

2014 saw acceleration of major transformations impacting the IT and networking landscapes, particularly with respect to IT-as-a-Service and cloud, SDN and NFV.  We expect 2015 to continue the trend.  Among our expectations:

Cloud:  2014 saw the enterprise "move to cloud" accelerate beyond most expectations, as the cost of cloud resources improved and their accessibility grew, and as CIOs became increasingly comfortable with using them.  In 2015, we expect to see more of two things: hybrid and "enterprise-class" cloud, and development of competitive cloud marketplaces.  With expanded use of on-demand, high-performance cloud access network services, cloud providers will be able to absorb more ambitious and mission-critical workloads. Additionally, enterprises will make use of an expanding landscape of competitive cloud marketplaces, sending workloads to a variety of cloud providers according to evolving needs and cloud availability and pricing. Spot-priced cloud marketplaces, for example as pioneered in 2014 by Deutsche Boerse (, will likely expand and proliferate and may gain embedded or associated network service components.

On-demand services:  Managed service providers will expand their on-demand service offerings in 2015, and enterprises will adopt them increasingly.  The ability to match network consumption to evolving needs in real time aligns well with the enterprise shift to on-demand IT and cloud, and enterprises will increasingly seek the improvements in utility and economy that on-demand provides.  Both SDN and NFV toolkits will power on-demand managed services in 2015, delivering both network function (i.e., "appliance") capability, and connectivity and bandwidth variability, through self-serviceOn-demand billing will become an increasingly expected and offered service feature.

Network architecture and operations:  In 2015, network operators will investigate more ambitious SDN- and NFV-driven transformations of network architectures and operations. We expect to see more proofs-of-concept and RFXs tackling network evolutions that leverage control plane extraction and software-based network control convergence with SDN, and virtualization of network functions with NFV.  Specifics that we expect to see in these efforts include: a push toward use of simplified equipment-trending  toward "white boxes"-in parts of the network as well as NFV infrastructure; exploration of changes in the routing layer, including experimentation with router virtualization; conjoint control and orchestration, in software systems, of multiple network layers and domains through control abstraction; and exploration of increased automation of network planning and other operational processes.

Stabilizing open frameworks:  2014 saw broad acceptance of the principle of open system frameworks for SDN and NFV to enable system convergence and broad ecosystem formation.  New industry organizations were created and existing organizations accelerated efforts to deliver and stabilize such frameworks, communicating with each other to work out respective spheres of focus within the new emerging "stack" and to align their efforts. In 2015 we will see very substantial progress made with these efforts. Critical information models and interfaces will be further developed and stabilized, and will be implemented in converging open source software efforts.  As implementers gain both clarity and working "toolkits" through these efforts, a developing vendor ecosystem will deliver a fast-increasing set of software tools for operators to build systems.


About the Author

Chris Janz, Vice President & CTO, Ciena Agility

Dr. Christopher Janz serves as Vice President and CTO of Ciena's Agility business division. Ciena Agility distributes software that enables network operators to deliver and monetize consumption-based services on demand; flexibly, efficiently and at high velocity. As CTO, Chris is largely responsible for designing Ciena Agility's forward path in the fast-evolving SDN and NFV technology and market landscape, and for managing Ciena Agility's contributions to industry organizations and efforts defining and driving those evolutions.

Chris has 20 years of industry experience in roles ranging from primary research, system architecture, and product development team management; to product line management and strategic marketing.  He holds a B.Eng. in engineering physics from the Royal Military College of Canada, a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from the University of Alberta and an M.B.A. from Queen's University. 
Published Tuesday, January 06, 2015 10:58 AM by David Marshall
@VMblog - (Author's Link) - February 10, 2015 6:55 AM

Once again, how great is it to be a part of the virtualization and cloud industries? 2014 was another banner year, and we witnessed a number of fantastic technologies take shape and skyrocket. And I, along with many industry experts and executives, media

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