Amdocs is getting ready to launch a version of ONAP aimed at the carrier grade and enterprise markets.
"We're just about to make a big carrier [and] enterprise grade release of ONAP," Angela Logothetis, VP and CTO of Amdocs Open Network, told Light Reading Thursday.
ONAP (Open Network Automation Platform) is an open source software platform with modules for the creation, monitoring, and orchestration of virtual functions (VNFs) on a network. Amdocs Ltd. (NYSE: DOX) was one of the key developers of the original software with AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) which became ECOMP, and got folded into ONAP this February. (See OPEN-O, ECOMP Combine to Create ONAP.)
Logothetis said that Amdocs has tested the core ONAP modules for security and hardened them for carrier or enterprise use -- "taking what's open source and making it carrier-grade." This will follow on from the various ONAP-based commercial packages that Amdocs has already developed. (See Monetizing ONAP, the Amdocs Way.)
Logothetis says that amongst the next important task for the ONAP Project, which now numbers nearly 20 major global service providers and vendors among its members, is to understand AI. "The next interesting thing that comes around is artificial Intelligence and machine learning, which is new for all of us," she said.
Amdocs, meanwhile, is now looking at how to develop and deploy ONAP in the mobile network as the industry evolves toward 5G and the new virtualized, white box-based network that is supposed to underpin the glorious future of 1-Gbit/s+ wireless. All of which is supposed to coalesce in the 2020 timeframe.
The mobile core has been the first part of the network to go virtual as operators update for new Internet of Things (IoT) and voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) services. "That's an easy place to start," Logothetis suggested, while noting the irony that standards around the 5G core are probably the "least defined" of the next-gen specification, because the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) typically focuses on the radio access network (RAN).
Logothetis says that Amdocs is working with Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) on edge computing proofs-of-concept. This involves understanding what content and data needs to cached and where exactly that should happen on the network.
The company is also looking at cloud RAN, which involves having virtualized basestation control functions running at the data center controlling distributed radioheads at the cellsite, and virtualized RAN. V-RAN involves "disaggregation" of the radio network, with some antenna functions eventually being run on white boxes at the cellsite.
— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading