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AI/Automation

MEF's marketplace gives APIs a place to land

MEF has launched a new LSO Marketplace microsite, a central hub for service providers to evaluate and deploy MEF Lifecycle Service Orchestration APIs.

Prior to the LSO Marketplace, service providers would have to "dig around in a developer site called GitHub," which acted as a repository for the LSO APIs. Operators can now use the Marketplace and new LSO Partners Directory to assess which partners are using MEF's LSO APIs and whether they can interoperate services with those partners, said Daniel Bar-Lev, VP of strategic programs for MEF.

LSO Sonata APIs automate business-to-business transactions for Carrier Ethernet (CE) connectivity services between service providers, and will soon support Internet access and SD-WAN services. MEF has also launched the latest release of LSO Sonata, the Celine LSO API Framework, which is the third release and adds a new service provisioning developer guide, payload handbook, incident management and API security profiles. Existing LSO Sonata features include: address validation, site query, product offering qualification, quote, product order, product inventory and trouble ticketing.

The goal of the Marketplace is to "make that journey as simple and streamlined as possible" for service provider executives on business, product and technical teams to make the case for implementing MEF LSO APIs, said Bar-Lev.

"What we're trying to do is create one place for all the API stakeholders ... they need business justification, value propositions and may need the latest news on what's going on, so we put that in the LSO Marketplace," he added.

LSO Sonata isn't just for telcos, said Bar-Lev. Enterprises in the mobility space, such as GM and Ford, plus utility companies could benefit from accessing MEF's APIs to buy digital services from operators, he said.

"The power utility ecosystem is buying and selling power from each other, but they also want to buy connectivity from telecoms in order to monitor their critical infrastructure. This all has to be automated," said Bar-Lev.

The Marketplace will act as a directory for users, and includes a LSO API Catalog with API definitions, release information, developer guides and test requirements. Users can also access LSO Payloads – schemas for MEF standardized products and services that can be managed with the APIs. Evaluation resources to define a business case for implementation, and tools for implementation support are also available in the Marketplace.

Over 30 vendors and service providers are in production with LSO Sonata APIs or plan to be in the coming months, according to MEF. That list includes AT&T, Axtel Networks, Bloomberg, CMC Networks, Colt Technology Services, HGC Global Communications, Lumen, Orange, PCCW Global, Proximus, Sparkle, StarHub, Telia, Telus, TIME dotCom, Verizon Business and Zayo.

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— Kelsey Kusterer Ziser, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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