As we discussed in our Small Cells World Summit roundup, there was a lot going on at the small cell industry’s annual confab last week – some of it old, some of it new. Yet, if one of the event’s themes was the nagging question of why deployments won’t ramp more quickly, we need to ask another question. What was missing from the event? What isn’t the industry talking about (or talking about enough) that may be important in helping it move forward?
I spent last week in London at the Small Cells World Summit. If you’re looking for a recap of the main themes, you can check that out here.
If you want a shorter version, the event boiled down to two key themes: old stuff and new stuff. Simple, huh? Much of the vendor and operator messaging focused on issues that the market has been grappling with for a while. The slow maturing of solutions and slowly ramping deployments. Difficulties in actually siting small cells. The evolving definition of what a small cell is. The availability of many, competing small cell backhaul technologies and architectures – with little insight (yet) into which may win out. Continue reading “Small Cells World Summit 2014: Something Old, Something New”→
Predictions that EPC would be one of the first and most important NFV applications ring true; this month alone, we have seen not only technology/product announcements, but also POCs and even initial deployments.
Vendor opportunity appears to be wide open for both small and larger, well-established suppliers; given the software content, non-hardware vendors now have a chance to penetrate this early adopter market.
Now that the reality of virtualized network functions such as the mobile core and CPE is beginning to transition from the discussion and concept stage into proof of concept (PoC) and initial deployment in support of new operator service models, how will the vendor community be impacted from a profit and competitive perspective? June is shaping up to be a watershed month for virtual EPC (vEPC) announcements which point out that the mobile core is indeed one of the initial network functions to become fully virtualized and staged for deployment. A key observation is that not all of the announcements have come from traditional network suppliers, leaving no doubt that the market will become more crowded as startups and IT players join the traditional mobile core players. What seems clear is that the new vEPC model can help operators; what is somewhat less clear is how the new and existing suppliers will turn this market transition into profitable product sales – which are for the most part software-based. Continue reading “Virtual EPCs Arrive Much Sooner Than Many Have Expected – But Where Is the Revenue?”→