Ericsson, in partnership with NTT DOCOMO and a number of other service providers, has demonstrated proof of concept (PoC) of its Network Functions Virtualization (NFV).
NFV is a network architecture concept that proposes using technologies for IT virtualization to virtualize network node functions that can be connected to create communication services.
During the PoC process, Ericsson activated its virtualized Evolved Packet Core (vEPC) on another vender’s orchestration platform, which was chosen by NTT DOCOMO successfully, with vEPCs from another vendor successfully activated on Ericsson’s orchestration platform.
NTT DOCOMO has led this mutual collaboration, with the vendors providing open NFV products to be combined at several test beds during the period. NTT DOCOMO is seeking to evaluate the possibility of an open NFV architecture using global standard environments.
Ericsson Cloud Execution Environment allows operators to deploy Ericsson’s and other vendors’ virtualized hardware and software products. This also helps them to allocate their network resources more flexibly, simplifying network configuration and ensuring savings in operational and capital expenditure, Ericsson said.
NFV adoption is driven by three factors: the desire to innovate new services through exposing network assets; increasing the speed for introduction of new services; and improving efficiency in terms of how networks are built and operated.
Seizo Onoe, executive vice president and CTO at NTT DOCOMO, said, “Thanks to collaborative efforts in the mobile network industry, NFV is soundly moving toward practical realization, rather than just ending up as a pie-in-the-sky dream.”
The partnership between NTT DOCOMO and Ericsson will help both try out new developments in trial environments before design completion and going live, securing both quality and expected functionality.
Håkan Djuphammar, head of Technology, at Ericsson’s Business Unit Cloud & IP, said, “The successful PoC exercise showcases the possibility for the operator of deploying NFV on a broader scale. By using this technology, telecom operators such as NTT DOCOMO are able to build global standard agile networks and speed up their new service introduction.