Dell is the latest big name to join the ranks of the New IP Agency (NIA), a not-for-profit initiative aimed at fostering the development of virtualized IP networks based on open-access principles.
In common with other major industry names, such as Cisco Systems, Deutsche Telekom, Huawei Technologies, Juniper Networks, Nokia, Time Warner Cable, ZTE and many more, Dell Technologies (Nasdaq: DELL) has identified The New IP Agency as an industry body that, through its testing, information sharing and community activities, can help the communications networking community develop and adopt next-generation capabilities and processes quickly and efficiently. (See ZTE Commits to 'Openness' With NIA Membership.)
"Open, interoperable solutions lie at the heart of our future-ready vision for service provider and enterprise customers alike and are key to unlocking the full potential of technology," says Tom Burns, vice president and general manager, Dell Networking and Enterprise Infrastructure. "We wholeheartedly believe in the NIA's mission to accelerate the journey towards truly open, interoperable and profitable virtualized IP networks and services. We're excited to take part in this initiative and help shape its direction and value for customers globally."
Jeff Hannah, director of the NIA, said: "The NIA welcomes Dell's commitment to the development of open and interoperable virtualized IP networks. As one of the leading vendors of networking solutions, Dell will be an invaluable contributor to the mission of the NIA, contributing expertise in the service provider and enterprise markets, both of which will benefit from the work of the NIA."
Dell joins at a pivotal moment for the NIA and for the broader comms networking sector as virtual network functions (VNFs) start to make their way into commercial networks, and virtualization plans migrate from the various proofs of concept (PoCs) into production networks. (See Telefónica CTO: It's Time for Unica Phase II, Deutsche Telekom's Kerstin Günther on New IP Network Transformation and NTT DoCoMo Develops Multivendor vEPC Platform.)
To help the network operators progress with their virtualization strategies, the NIA is undertaking a series of independent evaluations focused on interoperability, a key concern for network operators that are determined to build best-of-breed networks comprising technology from multiple vendors. Dell will now join that evaluation process.
The NIA, with its partner member European Advanced Networking Test Center AG (EANTC) , has already conducted a number of ground-breaking interoperability tests, the first of which resulted in the publication of a detailed evaluation report here on Light Reading. (See EXCLUSIVE! NFV Interop Evaluation Results.)
That set of tests, known as Phase 1A, focused on interoperability between VNFs and NFV infrastructure (NFVi) systems from multiple suppliers. A new set of Phase 1B tests is starting now with new participants seeking to gain independent evaluation of their capabilities.
At the same time, EANTC is starting the NIA's Phase 2A tests, which focus on interoperability between NFVi systems and VNF Managers (VNFMs). (See NIA's Latest NFV Test Program Opens for Business .)
NIA membership is open to any company engaged in the development and/or deployment of network virtualization technology or processes. Further details can be found at the NIA website.
— Ray Le Maistre, , Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading