& cplSiteName &

Ericsson CTO Bangs SDN Drum

Michelle Donegan
News Analysis
Michelle Donegan
10/16/2013
50%
50%

After nearly a year since he first introduced the term "Service Provider Software-Defined Networking," Ericsson CTO Ulf Ewaldsson is ready to provide an update on the Swedish vendor's vision of the programmable wide area network (WAN) and what it will mean for OSS platforms.(See Ericsson CTO: Let's Redefine SDN and OSS Gets Sexy at ESDN.)

Speaking to Light Reading on the sidelines of the recent GigaOM Structure Europe conference in London, Ewaldsson said Ericsson AB has moved beyond crafting a vision, which was a high-level view about making networks more relevant, and started demonstrating some of the technologies and use cases for Service Provider SDN. (See Service Provider SDN Gets Real.)

"We've demonstrated service chaining and a number of different opportunities with customers that can be unleashed by being able to program the network," he said. What remains to be done, he says, is "to connect into real big clouds with this kind of technology."

That blending of carrier and cloud network functionality is some way off being a reality, however.

"What we try to do with Service Provider SDN is to provide opportunities for the networks inside the cloud… to be connected to the WAN and let the WAN be controlled from applications in the cloud, something that is totally impossible today," he said.

At the heart of Service Provider SDN is software and a major transformation of the OSS layer, which would morph in its role to include control over the network in addition to operations and maintenance.

"It's of course the holy grail for many companies," he said. "Any large player in the cloud space will say that they are the ones building the best controllers and creating the best abstraction and being able to view the resources in the cloud in the best possible way. We're working beyond that… creating a good abstraction of the entire network in terms of the resources that are available in order to start software-controlling the network."

The OSS can evolve to become a control plane for the entire network, he explained.

However, he pointed out how this has been slightly misinterpreted as being a centralized control point. Rather, the OSS software will be distributed across all the elements in the network, such as in radio basestations or routers or in datacenter equipment, he said. The network elements would house software that is part of the OSS system, he explained, while there would also be a more centralized management capability.

"That's different from a datacenter, where someone says 'I'll sell you an SDN controller,' and what happens is a piece of hardware sits somewhere in the datacenter," he said. "That's not the vision that we have of how this will be realized."

Ericsson's Telcordia assets will play an important role in this OSS transformation, said Ewaldsson. "When it comes to the migration of the OSS system into becoming the SDN layer, if you will, we're very happy we were able to acquire a very competent team in Telcordia."

Indeed, Ericsson's existing OSS assets will be the foundation for the vendor's Cloud System, a cloud management and orchestration stack that is expected to launch in the first quarter of 2014, according to Caroline Chappell, a senior analyst at Heavy Reading .

The Swedish vendor, of course, isn't the only telecom equipment vendor with this kind of vision for SDN in carrier networks, notes Chappell. In her new report, "Managing the Virtualized Network: How SDN and NFV Will Change OSS," she puts Ericsson, along with Alcatel-Lucent, Cisco Systems Inc., and Nokia Solutions and Networks (NSN) in the category of "big picture SDN and NFV management vendors." (See SDN & NFV to Shake Up Operator OSS Market, Heavy Reading Finds.)

And Ericsson isn't necessarily leading that vendor pack. "Ericsson is being very cautious about this," says Chappell. "They're saying, 'We've got to get this right.'"

Meanwhile, Ericsson will carry on evangelizing about Service Provider SDN because the vendor sees an opportunity for growth. "We are very optimistic around the potential of the industry to grow," he said. "Our idea of growth is that the networks become more relevant."

— Michelle Donegan, contributing editor, special to Light Reading

(2)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
sam masud
50%
50%
sam masud,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/16/2013 | 2:18:24 PM
Say what
I am a little unclear whether Ericsson is suggesting that its concept of a next-gen OSS can obviate the need for an SDN controller in an SDN network. If so, it would seem that Ericsson is going in a different direction from the rest of the industry.
Carol Wilson
50%
50%
Carol Wilson,
User Rank: Blogger
10/16/2013 | 9:59:01 AM
Contrast Ericsson's caution with DT's urgency
It's interesting that the vendor is being cautious while the service provider is saying immediate action is required. A role reversal at the very least. 

Maybe they can meet in the middle on pacing?

Ericsson's ideas about distributed control are certainly interesting. 
Light Reading’s Upskill U is a FREE, interactive, online educational resource that delivers must-have education on themes that relate to the overall business transformation taking place in the communications industry.
NEXT COURSE
Wednesday, October 5, 1:00PM EDT
Gigabit & Smart Cities
Joe Kochan, COO & Co-Founder, US Ignite
UPCOMING COURSE SCHEDULE
Friday, October 7, 1:00PM EDT
Gigabit & DOCSIS 3.1
Ty Pearman, Director, Access Architecture, Comcast
Wednesday, October 19, 1:00PM EDT
Securing a Virtual World
Rita Marty, Executive Director, Mobility and Cloud Security, Chief Security Office, AT&T
Friday, October 21, 1:00PM EDT
Security: Evolving the Data Center
Rasool Kareem Irfan, Head, Telecom & Infrastructure Security Practice, Tata Communications Transformation Services Ltd (TCTS)
in association with:
From The Founder
Light Reading today starts a new voyage as part of a larger Enterprise.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Documentaries
From Philly, With Love

9|30|16   |     |   (5) comments


Join Alan Breznick, cable's answer to the Italian Stallion, as he runs through the highlights of SCTE Cable-Tec Expo, lumbers along in Rocky Balboa's footsteps and searches for the perfect Philadelphia cheesesteak.
LRTV Interviews
CenturyLink: SD-WAN Customers Looking for Value Not Cost Savings

9|30|16   |   5:31   |   (0) comments


At NFV & Carrier SDN in Denver, CenturyLink's Eric Nowak told Light Reading that when customers launch SD-WAN, they aren't necessary looking to save money, but instead they are looking for more value from what they're spending. He also shared some unique case studies and lessons learned from launching SD-WAN services.
LRTV Custom TV
Flexible Deployment Approaches for the Gigabit Services Evolution

9|29|16   |     |   (0) comments


For many operators, the gigabit evolution begins with the shift from DOCSIS 3.0 to DOCSIS 3.1. But that move represents a change not only in the protocol itself, but in the approach to architecting their entire DOCSIS delivery chain -- from the headend to the outside plant and home gateway components.

Jonathan Ruff, senior director of global technical ...

LRTV Interviews
Level 3 VP: Enterprises Need More for Less

9|29|16   |   05:27   |   (0) comments


Andrew Dugan, Level 3 group vice president of global technology and IT, says enterprises need more bandwidth and they need it faster and with greater security, but they want to spend less, if possible. They are looking to carriers to reduce their network complexity and help protect them from cyberattacks as well.
LRTV Interviews
CenturyLink: SDN/NFV Pose New Interconnection Possibilities

9|28|16   |   04:37   |   (0) comments


Network operators should develop new APIs and business processes for reselling virtual assets to each other, says CenturyLink's Bill Walker. That will enable them to build digital business portfolios that help them avoid becoming commodity transport providers.
LRTV Interviews
Level 3: Overcoming Terror of Being Supplier, Integrator & Developer

9|28|16   |     |   (0) comments


At Light Reading's NFV & Carrier SDN event in Denver, Travis Ewert of Level 3 Communications said there is terror in becoming supplier, integrator and developer, but it can be overcome and be cost effective.
LRTV Custom TV
Introducing IoT World News

9|27|16   |   01:43   |   (0) comments


Self-driving cars, medical sensors, smart cities... and refrigerators. In order to address the huge scope of IoT, KNect365 has created a unique online community that will help businesses to understand and monetize the opportunities that live within the IoT market. We look forward to welcoming you to IoT World News -- your gateway to a better connected future.
LRTV Interviews
AT&T: Reusable Functions Next NFV Key

9|27|16   |   06:03   |   (0) comments


The next generation of NFV has to break functions down into reusable software chunks, making everything much more cloud-like.
LRTV Interviews
Masergy on Security: Attackers Gaining Upper Hand

9|27|16   |   5:10   |   (2) comments


At Light Reading's NFV & Carrier SDN event in Denver, Ray Watson, vice president of Global Technology at Masergy, says that because of the growth in virtualization, the threat landscape is shifting in favor of the attackers. As a result, service providers need to think beyond just defending the perimeter and take a more holistic approach to security.
LRTV Interviews
Verizon Takes Next Step on Biz Virtualization Journey

9|26|16   |   4:38   |   (2) comments


At September's NFV & Carrier SDN event in Denver, Light Reading sat down with Victoria Lonker, director of Product and New Business Innovation at Verizon, to chat about where the carrier is with delivering virtualized services to business customers.
LRTV Interviews
Global Services: The $40B Face-Off

9|26|16   |   05:53   |   (1) comment


More service providers than ever before are battling it out to win a slice of what is now a $40 billion global communications services pie, explains Ovum Principal Analyst David Molony.
LRTV Documentaries
MEC Congress: The Key Takeaways

9|22|16   |   03:25   |   (3) comments


Three key takeaways from the Mobile Edge Computing (MEC) Congress in Munich, Germany.
Upcoming Live Events
November 3, 2016, The Montcalm Marble Arch, London
November 30, 2016, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 1, 2016, The Westin Times Square, New York, NY
December 6-8, 2016, The Westin Excelsior, Rome
May 16-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Hot Topics
Eurobites: Telefónica Taps Juniper for Network Security
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 9/26/2016
AT&T CEO Backs Black Lives Matter
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 9/30/2016
Powell Kills the Cable Show
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 9/29/2016
Telstra Sees Quadrupled Data Capacity by 2020
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 9/28/2016
From Philly, With Love
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading, 9/30/2016
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Light Reading CEO Steve Saunders and UXP Systems CEO Gemini Waghmare discuss the strategic importance of digital identity for operators in the midst of transformation.
Join us for an in-depth interview between Steve Saunders of Light Reading and Alexis Black Bjorlin of Intel as they discuss the release of the company's Silicon Photonics platform, its performance, long-term prospects, customer expectations and much more.
Animals with Phones
There's Nothing Like Missing a Full Minute of Pokémon Go Click Here
Live Digital Audio

A vital part of increasing the number of women in comms is transforming the ways companies can support and empower women. While progressive company policies that support both men and women in achieving work-life balance are a step in the right direction, creating a company culture that supports those policies can at times be more challenging.

During this show, we'll talk to Lynn Comp, Senior Director of Industry and Sales Enabling (ISE) in the Network Platforms Group at Intel, about why those challenges exist and how companies can overcome them. She'll provide insight into how Intel has worked to create a culture that supports work-life balance, and provide steps and guidance for other companies wishing to do the same. We will also leave plenty of time to get your questions answered live on the air.