HP, Telcordia Hop SDP Bandwagon

Further signs that the service delivery platform (SDP) market is heating up will come this week as Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ) and OSS giant Telcordia Technologies Inc. launch new products in the market.

An SDP is an integrated set of software modules that, collectively, enable service providers to quickly and efficiently launch and manage multiple fixed and mobile services, whether created inhouse or by third-party developers. (See Why SDP Matters Now).

Light Reading has learned that HP is set to announce a services development lab, based on its SDP capabilities, that service providers and third-party developers can use to try out applications and get up to date with service creation and delivery developments. HP had not returned calls regarding the matter as this article was published.

Sources say that Spanish mobile operator Amena, which was recently acquired by (NYSE: FTE), has signed up to use the HP service.

As for Telcordia, it's due to announce a new souped-up version of its ISCP service database product that it will position as a converged applications server. The vendor has already announced Indian mobile operator Tata Teleservices Ltd. as a user but has yet to unveil its full SDP strategy. (See Tata Selects Telcordia.)

The SDP concept is gaining traction with some of the world's largest carriers, and that's whetting the appetite of the systems suppliers already involved and attracting the attention of other players. (See Insider: Telcos Embrace SDPs, FT Commits to MS SDP, Microsoft Preps for Telco Battle, Sun Announces SDP Plan, and Global Crossing Puts SDP Into Action.)

HP is one of the sector's early movers and has already named Telefònica Mòviles SA and Korea's SK Telecom (Nasdaq: SKM) as buyers of its SDP technology. It also recently announced a partnership with Flash technology vendor Macromedia Inc. to develop new service delivery capabilities (see HP Takes Flash Approach to SDPs).

The move sounds like a useful step for HP as it battles with the likes of IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM), Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT), and Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERICY) for the carriers' hearts and dollars, says Heavy Reading analyst Caroline Chappell.

"All the major systems integrators are developing a partner program to go with their SDPs, and this is HP's," says Chappell, who has written a number of reports on the SDP market. "The large IT firms like HP need to do more to help the service providers develop applications, and this should do that, as it will help attract the third-party application developers that carriers need to integrate with. And with the market changing so fast, this sort of facility, where developers and carriers can prototype and test applications, will help the carriers keep in touch with the latest market developments."

Details of Telcordia's offering are scant, but Chappell believes the vendor will position its SDP as a highly flexible, multi-capable platform that can support "just about every protocol you can think of. It sounds like it's taking a very old telco approach that's focused on the needs of networking people, and not addressing the Web services and IT side of things, which others have done."

Sticking to its company policy, Telcordia didn't return our calls for comment. (See HQ Sale Funds Telcordia Deal, Telcordia D-Day Approaches, Telcordia Leaves Legal Luggage, Telkom vs Telcordia: Case Not Closed, Inside Telcordia's Discord , Telcordia With Fries?, and so on.)

— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

digits 12/5/2012 | 3:00:00 AM
re: HP, Telcordia Hop SDP Bandwagon While there appears to be a mixed reaction IMS, the other three-letter acronym 'de jour' (some laugh it off as a marketing diversion, others are taking it very seriously), the general reaction to the concept of the SDP from those not involved in the IT side of the telecom business appears to err on the cynical side, to be polite.
Should service delivery platforms be taken more seriously by those with a traditional telecom network background? Or is this a three-letter acronym too far?
dljvjbsl 12/5/2012 | 2:59:59 AM
re: HP, Telcordia Hop SDP Bandwagon SDP will face the same issue that IMS faces. This is the service compostion problem. The creation of highly feautred software systems is a difficult and time consuming task. Anyone who talks about the creation of customized services in a carrier network is talking about something for which there is no current technological solution.

Service composition on a carrier scale is almost impossible. It is a contradiction in terms. The carriers rely on the economies of scale for cost and reliability (c.f. the great similarlity between IMS and the AIN) but customization and especially customer programming are the antithesis of this.
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