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Mobile World Congress 2018: It’s All About 5G

by Angela Whiteford Angela Whiteford No Comments

If you attended Mobile World Congress 2018 you saw it first-hand – it’s all about 5G. You could not go anywhere without being exposed to demos, use cases, and proof of concepts all centered around the pending arrival of the next-generation of mobile (and fixed) networks. As the leader in virtualized networks, Affirmed Networks was naturally front and center in the middle of the action.

Just prior to Mobile World Congress, we introduced the industry’s first ever 5G mobile core – a solution already in trials with some of the world’s top operators in North America and the Middle East. (Read some of the reactions to our 5G mobile core by some of the top influencers in the market).

We also shared our views on the industry’s direction as it evolves to 5G through conversations with the media and as part of industry debates on which part of the network would be more critical in a 5G world.

And of course, we spent a great deal of time with our customers, helping them understand the immense opportunity presented by 5G and mapping ways to help them get there as efficiently as possible.  Also, on the customer front, we announced several new deployments highlighting the ongoing evolution to virtualized networks globally.  In case you missed them, you can read all about how customers like Softbank, Turkcell, du and 3UK have selected Affirmed Networks to help them with their network transformation efforts.

We were also very active with our partners, conducting meetings, demos, and presentations with a growing ecosystem of partners –such as Intel, VMware, and Juniper, among others – that is focused on ensuring operators have the highest levels of performance and the most efficient deployment of virtualized networks in both a 4G and 5G world.

So, even if you weren’t able to get to Barcelona this year, you now know that this was the year that “5G got real” as the industry now shifts from Proof of Concepts to actual, working solutions such as our 5G mobile core.  The next phase is going to be all about use cases, deployments, and compelling new, tailored service offerings.  Hold on, it’s going to be a fun ride.

Affirmed Networks Joins the Debate – Core vs. Edge in a 5G World?

by Angela Whiteford Angela Whiteford No Comments

As always, MWC 2018 was a whirlwind of customer meetings, demos, and meeting with industry influencers. In addition to all this activity, Affirmed Networks’ Chief Architect, Ron Parker, participated in a lively session about which part of the network would be most critical in a 5G world.

Affirmed’s Ron Parker advocates the importance of the Network Core in a 5G world during a session at MWC 2018 in Barcelona.

The session, led by Dr. Bi Qi President of China Telecom Technology Innovation Center, which was titled “Debate: Do 5G Business Cases Depend More on Core or Edge Upgrades,” featured an impressive group of representatives from across the global telecom industry, who were split into teams to advocate one side over another. During the session, much of the debate centered on highlighting the unique business cases that are being built around 5G technologies, and how those are influencing the business and technology roadmaps of operators globally.

A proud member of “Team Core,” Parker’s views focused on the importance of a 5G core in terms of its ability to deliver, tailored “slices” of the network to enterprise customers, offering significant growth prospects for network operators offering connected services such as IoT and M2M.

Affirmed Networks Joins the Debate - Core vs. Edge in a 5G World?

Affirmed’s Ron Parker participates in a panel of thought-leaders from companies such as China Telecom, ECI, Qualcomm, ZTE, and others.

As expected, both sides presented articulate views and informed insights to support their respective sides, offering the audience a unique opportunity to hear perspectives directly from some of the leaders responsible for helping the industry move to 5G. Following the impassioned debate, fortunately, both sides parted amicably — mutually agreeing on the significant growth opportunity that 5G will provide across the ecosystem.

One of the panel’s more vocal participants, Parker offered several perspectives, including a closing remark highlighting the importance of 5G:

“The future of mobile networks is here today. Cloud-native and virtualized, the 5G-ready core networks being deployed by today’s innovative operators are enabling a new breed of customized slices, services and revenue streams over the years ahead.”

“The future of mobile networks is here today. Cloud-native and virtualized, the 5G-ready core networks being deployed by today’s innovative operators are enabling new breed of customized slices, services and revenue streams over the years ahead.” -Ron Parker, Chief Architect, Affirmed Networks

At Mobile World Congress 2018, Affirmed Focuses on What’s Happening Now

by Angela Whiteford Angela Whiteford No Comments

At Mobile World Congress 2018, you’ll hear 5G is the future. For Affirmed, the future is now. This year, Affirmed Networks is showcasing the industry’s first 5G, web-scale mobile core solution that’s field proven and available for deployment now.

Affirmed is proud to be participating again this year at GSMA’s 2018 Mobile World Congress. Affirmed will be in Hall 2, booth #2D50 throughout the event, lasting from February 26 to March 1, 2018.

At booth #2D50, you can expect to see demonstrations that will include Cloud Native, 5G, Control and User Plane Services, Network Slicing, Service Automation, and Virtual Probe and Analytics.

Schedule a meeting with Affirmed Networks and see firsthand, what is happening in the mobile industry now.

Accelerating the 5G Revolution

5G is changing the way communications service providers build their networks, which need to be more flexible, more scalable, more intelligent, and less expensive to operate. As the leader in virtualized mobile networks, Affirmed leads the way in accelerating network transformation to a next-generation virtualized architecture.

The Affirmed Networks’ 5G Mobile Core provides operators the opportunity to offer unique and highly customized service and optimize service delivery to their customers.

At booth #2D50, we will showcase our fully virtualized, cloud-native mobile network platform. Much more than a working concept, we’re showing a complete, proven solution that’s already hard at work in the world’s leading mobile networks: AT&T, Verizon, Vodafone, Digicel, and many more. You won’t want to miss it.

Affirmed will also have a presence with many of our technology partners, including VMware, HPE, Tech Mahindra, RedHat, Coriant, and Juniper Networks.

Do 5G Business Cases Depend More on Core or Edge Upgrades?

How can 5G technologies influence the timing and roadmaps of mobile operators globally? On Thursday, March 1st Angela Singhal Whiteford, Affirmed’s Vice President of Marketing and Product Management, will debate the business cases to be built around 5G technologies, and how that can influence the timings and technology roadmap of operators globally.

Whiteford will speak alongside industry experts including Dr. QiBi, President of China Telecom, Hayim Porat, CTO of ECI Telecom, Tommy Bjorkberg, CTO of ZTE, Balazs Bertenyi, Chairman of 3GPP, Alan Carlton, MD & VP for Europe at Interdigital, and Durga Malladi, SVP of Engineering at Qualcomm. Learn more about the debate here.

Schedule a Meeting with Affirmed at Mobile World Congress 2018

At Mobile World Congress 2018, we’ll share a fascinating look at the reality of ‘now’ in the mobile industry.

Want to make 5G a reality now? Meet with us at MWC ’18 at booth #2D50 in Hall 2. Schedule meeting.

For Mobile Network Carriers, Automation Is Key for Innovation

by Angela Whiteford Angela Whiteford No Comments

In the context of a mobile network core, automating the lifecycle management of both new and existing operator services, including designing, deploying, performance measuring, fine tuning, and decommissioning, is a rising tide that will lift all boats. But how fast that tide is coming in is an important topic to unpack, as we did in our conversation with Light Reading.

Services can be a complex mix of multiple functions, both legacy appliance-based functions and virtualized functions. When it comes to innovation, it’s the lack of automation that creates a cultural and structural barrier to driving top-line service revenue growth. Facing intense competition from over-the-top content providers, and with ever-higher service expectations from customers, operators must find ways to provide new revenue-generating services that customers will purchase.

 

Unfortunately, the current process of designing and rolling out a new service is a very manual one. It can take months to deploy a simple gold, silver, or bronze service. Given that the burden is so high to roll out a new service, only the “highest runners” tend to make it to market. This situation stifles innovation and significantly retards revenue generation.

On the other hand, automation allows operators to rapidly create, deploy, measure performance, iterate on services and decommission services (fail fast). The process can move 80% to 90% faster than it does today—while reducing the cost to create these services by 70% or more.

This powers the innovation engine in operators and drives growth. For instance, Affirmed has seen the simple process of onboarding a mobile virtual network operator customer take two months or longer without automation. Automating the process reduced the time to less than one week and cut the cost by 90%.

Automation has become an important driver to support new services such as enterprise offerings, innovative rating plans, and IoT. Edge Computing is an emerging area where virtual network functions are deployed closer to the edge, further driving the demand for automation.

Transitioning to automation will be a gradual evolution (probably a decade-long process, as Dan Jones and others have pointed out), but with highly repetitive tasks being first to evolve, we see a major wave of disruption coming as network processes inevitably become more automated.