Monetizing ONAP, the Amdocs Way

Ray Le Maistre

As the debate about how ONAP (Open Network Automation Platform) might be interpreted and used by network operators, Amdocs is providing an early example of ONAP in action and showing how it plans to generate revenues from the open source development. (See ONAP Takes Flak as Telcos Prep for Release 1 and ONAP Strikes Back, Saying Critics Are Misinformed.)

Amdocs has been involved in ONAP since its genesis as ECOMP (Enhanced Control, Orchestration, Management and Policy), the orchestration and network management platform developed at AT&T. (Amdocs was a key vendor partner in that process.)

As a result, Amdocs is arguably better placed than any other vendor to develop commercial products based on ONAP code and it knows it: When ECOMP became the rump of ONAP early this year, Amdocs made it clear that it planned to build on that experience to develop new business opportunities. (See Amdocs CMO: We're Gonna Mint It in MANO.)

In September, it unveiled its (take a deep breath) Amdocs Network Function Virtualization (NFV) powered by Open Network Automation Platform (ONAP), a portfolio of software tools and associated professional services (See Amdocs Claims ONAP First-Mover Status and Amdocs Unveils NFV Portfolio Based on ONAP.)

Now Amdocs has unveiled what it calls its Virtualized Intercarrier Service Orchestration Solution, which, perhaps advisedly, it is not calling VISOS. (See Amdocs Unveils ONAP-Based Intercarrier Service Orchestration Solution.)

In essence, this is software designed to enable network operators to offer software-defined data services beyond their own networks and is based on ONAP open source code and APIs developed by the MEF. (See Amdocs Unveils ONAP-Based Intercarrier Service Orchestration Solution and MEF Proclaims Progress on Key LSO Interfaces.)

The Amdocs offering builds on the work done during the past 18 months or so by a group of companies including AT&T, Colt and Orange, which are keen to be able to offer flexible and dynamically controlled services on an international basis. (See AT&T, Colt Claim Major SDN Advance, AT&T, Colt, Orange Team with SDOs on Global API Standards and Inter-Carrier APIs Get Major Push.)

Amdocs is being quite clever by announcing this offering before the first full release of the ONAP platform is available, as it shows off the knowledge it has of the ONAP code base and it addresses a real need amongst operators. The vendor says the software is available now to operators -- what isn't known (by anyone, most likely) is how much integration effort would be required to deploy this in a carrier network. The obvious immediate market for Amdocs is the set of operators that have already been working on SDN interoperability.

Of course, Amdocs isn't the only vendor that can develop commercial offerings based on ONAP code -- the likes of Ericsson, Huawei, IBM, Nokia, ZTE and more are also Platinum members of the open source initiative. But it seems they might have some catching up to do.

— Ray Le Maistre, International Group Editor, Light Reading

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