& cplSiteName &

Verizon Worried About SDN, NFV Impacts

Sarah Thomas

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Genband Perspectives -- Verizon is banking on using SDN and NFV in its network to handle the growth in IP traffic, but at least one executive thinks the company is behind in thinking about the operational impacts of the emerging technologies.

Speaking here on Tuesday, Kyle Malady, SVP of global network operations for Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ), said that the carrier has a "strong program to leverage SDN and NFV," but he's concerned because he's seen a lot of hype of this kind in the past, such as with IMS. (See Defining SDN & NFV.)

"It's one thing to think about it on paper and another in the field with operational problems," he warned. "We are running behind in my company on thinking about the operational impacts of SDN and FNV on our business."

His main concern is that, in the past, if one of his engineers had a problem with, say, Genband Inc. equipment, it would call Genband. "In an NFV world, I'm not sure what happens," he admitted. "There could be a lot of different maintenance issues and people to talk to in order to fix one box." (See Liability Issues Increase in Virtual World.)

That said, Malady thinks SDN and NFV hold a lot of promise, and Verizon is "banking on it." It is just moving more cautiously than some of its competitors like AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), which has been more bullish about the potential for the virtualization technologies. (See AT&T Working on Home-Grown SDN Controller for Later in 2014 and AT&T Spotlights Early SDN Efforts.)

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(6)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Kevin Mitchell
Kevin Mitchell,
User Rank: Light Sabre
6/11/2014 | 2:52:28 PM
Cloud Means NFV From Single Vendor
This is one of the major drivers we hear for cloud sourcing voice vs rebuilding a voice network (NFV or otherwise). A cloud voice platform consolidates over 10 functional elements into a single elastic, fully managed and horizontally integrated solution. And done so with the all-OPEX, success-based SaaS model.

So that's leveraging NFV but from a single vendor and with a better business model, single point of contact for support and lower risk. Cloud voice platform equals NFV plus NOC, plus operations. And done right, the cloud voice platform gives the service provider an elegant way to manage the voice business, not technology.

MNOs and telcos no longer need to run a voice network to be a voice provider. They should leverage the cloud, bot build one when it comes to voice. Their core focus should be on investing in broadband and mobility networks and applications not rebuilding a network that delivers a commodity service with declining ARPU.

My blogs on the topic:

Delicate Balance: Voice without the Investment

NFV is Necessary but not Sufficient

User Rank: Light Sabre
6/11/2014 | 1:23:51 PM
Re: Choking throats

I think you are a bit optimistic about Systems Vendors ability to control themselves.  My experience over the past 10 years or so that the old multiple vendor thing has devolved into 1 winner and a stalking horse.  Given the margin pressure and lack of differentiation that has been put into the business. The stalking horses slave away trying to get any amount of business and end up with less than they spend in R&D for a given program.


To the main point here, there are two ways to proceed.  Purists would like 100K employee organizations to completely redo themselves to use the new technology.  Most people think that we will have experiments and trials.  I think that the experiments and trials will lead to some potential actual RFPs for actual deployment.  This will be true after there has been some time to consume the output from the experiements.  The challenge is going to be is that nobody is likely to have the exact product requested in that RFP.  On top of that things that actually get deployed won't match the RFP.  

Use case at a time will be how this goes. Took 20 years for ARPANET to become the WWW.  We are now 20 years into that revolution and think how different the prirorities are now.  Why should I think a fundamental shift will take less?

User Rank: Light Sabre
6/11/2014 | 9:38:06 AM
Re: Choking throats
Except you choke that one throat a little too much and you could sufficate them and then you suffer because all your eggs are in one basket.  While not always the best to have multiple vendors which create more maintenance and operational issues, it's better to have them competing against each other to improve their products and reduce costs. Keeping Vendor X on their toes knowing they can be swapped out fairly quickly with Vendor Y who is already embedded in the network. 
Mitch Wagner
Mitch Wagner,
User Rank: Lightning
6/10/2014 | 11:44:18 PM
Choking throats
Cultural changes with SDN and NFV are more important than technology.

When multiple vendors provide a solution, you can get into fingerpointing when something goes wrong. With a single-vendor solution you have one throat to choke.
User Rank: Light Sabre
6/10/2014 | 10:22:57 PM
Re: Implementation
@danielcawrey, good points. I think, however, that it appears that Verizon may not be fully recognizing the differences, which will truly slow down their understanding of the new.  You first have to know what you don't know and then learn about it.

I think that has been the problem with much of new technology, the tendency is there to just think of a new application, rather than learning and understanding the technology and how it is different.

User Rank: Light Sabre
6/10/2014 | 7:24:20 PM
It seems like this is a common problem with any new technology. How do you plan for something that has not yet been implemented? If you don't understand the specifica consequences of things, it can be difficult to put them into any sort of context. 

The future for SDN and NFV is inevitable. But its realization may be further off than many may think. 
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.
Friday, October 28, 1:00PM EDT
Security: The Plusses and Minuses of Open Source Software
Nick Feamster, Acting Director, Center for Information Technology Policy, Princeton University
Wednesday, November 16, 1:00PM EST
SDN 101
John Isch, Practice Director, Network & Voice, Orange Business Services
Friday, November 18, 1:00PM EST
SDN & Open Source
Christopher W. Rice, Senior Vice President of AT&T Labs, Domain 2.0 Architecture and Design
Wednesday, November 30, 1:00PM EST
SDN & the Software Defined Data Center
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 Custom TV
The Journey Toward Carrier-Grade WiFi

10|26|16   |   3:39   |   (0) comments

In this Light Reading interview, Dave Sperling, CTO at Smith Micro Software and active participant of the WBA's policy working group, discusses the need for carrier-grade WiFi. Technical and business challenges slowing the fulfillment of this goal are addressed, as well as management strategies that will enable communication service providers to optimize end user ...
LRTV Custom TV
ZTE BBWF Highlights

10|26|16   |     |   (0) comments

At BBWF 2016, ZTE showed a broad range of innovative technologies that are kick-starting an ultrafast broadband journey.
LRTV Custom TV
Next-Generation Technology Beyond DOCSIS 3.1

10|20|16   |     |   (0) comments

At SCTE 2016, Huawei's Liu Jianhua speaks with Alan Breznick for an exclusive interview.
LRTV Custom TV
Hybrid Video Solutions to Change TV, Change Future

10|20|16   |     |   (0) comments

At SCTE 2016, Huawei's Ian Locke speaks with Alan Breznick for an exclusive interview.
LRTV Custom TV
Huawei Future-Oriented Giga Coax Network

10|20|16   |     |   (0) comments

At SCTE 2016, Huawei's Allen Wang speaks with Alan Breznick for an exclusive interview.
LRTV Custom TV
Huawei at SCTE 2016

10|20|16   |     |   (0) comments

Join Alan Breznick of Light Reading and take a sneak peek at the Huawei booth at SCTE 2016.
LRTV Custom TV
Assuring Network Quality in a Rapidly Changing Environment

10|20|16   |     |   (0) comments

As the rate of change and complexity increases in agile networks, the importance of introducing DevOps methodologies for integrating active test and assurance solutions throughout the full service lifecycle becomes critical to ensure that customers are experiencing the service quality they demand. The industry landscape is changing, and software-based test and ...
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
A10 Networks on Service Providers' Industry Needs

10|20|16   |     |   (0) comments

Light Reading's Steve Saunders hears how A10 enables service providers to accelerate, secure and optimize their application delivery to drive down costs, enhance service availability, and better respond to customer requirements, so they can improve customer satisfaction, monetize their network, and grow revenues.
LRTV Custom TV
New NFV Use Cases for Cable TV

10|19|16   |     |   (0) comments

A large number of NFV use cases are focused on the enterprise domain, looking at virtualization of customer-premises equipment (CPE). To date, there has been little focus on the use cases and business case for virtualization of the video content delivery networks required to deliver unicast and streaming video to consumers. Amdocs commissioned Analysys Mason to ...
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Meet the Future Workforce: New Faces, Expectations & Motivations

10|19|16   |   5:33   |   (1) comment

Millennials and their younger peers, Gen Z, expect more out of their network and more out of their work. Intel's Lynn Comp shares how the industry can prepare for this new generation of workers.
LRTV Custom TV
ZTE Global Services User Congress 2016 Highlights

10|19|16   |     |   (0) comments

ZTE held its 2nd Global Service User Conference in Dusseldorf on October 13-14. Representatives from network operators, leading industry analysts and ZTE senior expertsattended the event, exploring the best practice in managed services and the vision to transform network operations into the operations center of the future (OpCF) in the software-defined networking ...
LRTV Custom TV
Cliff Grossner on Cloud & Network Synergy From Carrier Service

10|18|16   |     |   (0) comments

Local carriers offer the collaborated cloud and network service that benefits from their understanding of the regulations operating in different vertical markets.
In this interview, Cliff Grossner from IHS Technology talks about how this advanced service can support business agility and flexibility.
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
Hot Topics
Attacks Have Major Internet Sites on the Ropes
Brian Santo, Senior editor, Test & Measurement / Components, Light Reading, 10/21/2016
Trump: Dump AT&T/TW & Comcast/NBC
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading, 10/24/2016
Layer3 TV Comes to Town, Hints at Future
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 10/21/2016
T-Mobile: AT&T & TW Means Ma Bell Not Focused on Mobile
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 10/24/2016
Sprint: Revenue up 3%, Capex Will Rise Again
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 10/25/2016
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
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.
There's no question that, come 2020, 5G technology will turn the world's conception of what mobile networking is on its head. Within the world of 5G development, Dr. ...
Animals with Phones
'Oh, Were You Looking for This?' Click Here
'I was just playing some games...'
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.