A geographically diverse set of Tier 1 carriers is driving initiatives to standardize critical components of network functions virtualization (NFV) and software-defined networks (SDN). Led by AT&T, Deutsche Telekom, NTT, Telefonica and Verizon, among others, these carriers hope to bring new technologies first developed and proven in the data center into their networks. The excitement over NFV and SDN has created renewed interest in the networking business and has fanned debate regarding potential winners and losers. So far, however, there has been only limited analysis of the potential economic and competitive impact of these technologies on the network, operations and the bottom-line.
This joint white paper by Arthur D. Little and Bell Labs aims to fill that gap. It offers our views on the network of the future and discusses the value of fusing carrier networks with the cloud ecosystem, as enabled by these technologies. These changes are both an opportunity and a necessity for telecom operators — and for those that get it right, it will be a game changer.