NetCracker’s Analyst Day – Part I: Shining a Light on the Cloud and Virtualization Ambitions

Jason Marcheck
Jason Marcheck

Summary Bullets:

  • NetCracker CEO Andrew Feinberg gave a lengthy talk at its analyst conference that was candid, but also shined a light on the challenges that lie ahead for OSS/BSS vendors looking to play a central role in telecom network virtualization.
  • Somewhat under-marketed outside OSS/BSS circles, NetCracker’s relationship with NEC is being positioned as a ‘best-of-breed’ arrangement that results in an ‘end-to-end’ solution which encompasses both the technology and processes needed for successfully adopting SDN and/or NFV.

NetCracker might be best known as an integrated OSS/BSS platform provider, but it is also making its ambitions to be viewed as one of the market’s leading SDN/NFV technology enablers clear. At its recently concluded industry analyst conference (held in Boston from May 13 to 15), the company dedicated the entire first half of its Day 1 sessions to presentations by Andrew Feinberg (NetCracker CEO) and Phil Jordan (Telefonica Global CIO) that focused almost entirely on their respective companies’ goals and ambitions for SDN and NFV.

If you think that seems telling, we’d agree. Continue reading “NetCracker’s Analyst Day – Part I: Shining a Light on the Cloud and Virtualization Ambitions”

Vendors are Jumping Back on the “Being Green” Bandwagon – This Time with Real Savings to Tout

Jason Marcheck
Jason Marcheck

Summary Bullets:

• Movements to increase energy efficiency and contribute to environmental sustainability are not new; however where they’ve often involved significant CapEx trade-offs to realize meaningful cost savings

• Momentum behind cloud and NFV technologies has reignited “green network” messaging, this time with orders of magnitude cost savings claims

Do anything long enough and the phrase, “Everything old is new again” will eventually play out. So, it was earlier this week, while at GENBAND’S Perspectives15 conference, that I had flashbacks to a topic du jour from many days gone by – environmental sustainability in telecom networking. The topic came up multiple times during the event, first at pre-show meetings with GENBAND execs, and then again during CEO David Walsh’s opening keynote address. Continue reading “Vendors are Jumping Back on the “Being Green” Bandwagon – This Time with Real Savings to Tout”

AT&T Formally Launches Services Delivered via Domain 2.0; Should Vendors be Scared?

Jason Marcheck
Jason Marcheck

Summary Bullets:

  • Among others, AT&T and DT have both committed to commercial service launches that will run on a virtualized network architecture
  • If two of the most aggressive rollouts in the world are only virtualizing fairly rote services, is that a bad sign for near-term vendor sales prospects?

So, anyone who heard AT&T’s John Donovan speak at Mobile World Congress had to come away impressed with the scope and aggressiveness of the carrier’s progress on Domain 2.0. Among the more noteworthy highlights were: Continue reading “AT&T Formally Launches Services Delivered via Domain 2.0; Should Vendors be Scared?”

AT&T, SXSW, and How Virtualization Can Make a Great Time Even Better

Jason Marcheck
Jason Marcheck

Summary Bullets:

  • For years, network equipment vendors have provided support services to help improve network capacity and user experience at large events.
  • AT&T routinely rolls out specially designed mobile base stations to large events to help handle excess demand.
  • NFV solutions related to vEPC and vIMS, and perhaps even virtualized BSS, can theoretically help complete the experience by supplementing the core as these excess demands become increasingly sophisticated.

When people ask me what I do at Current Analysis, I generally respond that I’m the “vendor services guy.” You know, network optimizations, consulting, managed network ops… those are the topics that make up my “beat.” As part of this coverage, I look at engagements that are commonly referred to as “special event services.” In a nutshell, this is where vendors such as Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, Huawei, and Nokia help their customers prepare for large festivals and other gatherings by adding extra base station capacity, as well as some network optimization to cope with the additional demand that a flood of users in a concentrated space can place on a mobile network. Continue reading “AT&T, SXSW, and How Virtualization Can Make a Great Time Even Better”

Nokia’s Security Center, Scare Tactics, and Why Operators Need to Get Serious About Security

Jason Marcheck
Jason Marcheck

The following is an excerpt of a Current Analysis Advisory Report, which the full text can be accessed by subscribers by clicking here.

For many of us, either with significant others or without, Valentine’s Day can be exciting, frightening or depressing – and sometimes any combination of the three. With that specter looming, Nokia’s Security Center Analyst Day, held on February 12 in Berlin, was very much in keeping with the uncertainty that a “holiday” like Valentine’s Day brings: One part scare tactics, and for those lucky enough to take the right precautions, followed by reassurance and validation. Continue reading “Nokia’s Security Center, Scare Tactics, and Why Operators Need to Get Serious About Security”

What’s So Hard About Building an Internet of Things, Anyway?

Jason Marcheck
Jason Marcheck

Summary Bullets:

  • IoT in the media often focuses on end-user devices or rote connectivity such as RFID, ZigBee, WiFi or Bluetooth; only in less-heralded places, like tech blogs, do the “blood and guts” such as mobile connectivity, and the OSS/BSS software and/or professional services needed to stitch it together, get discussed.
  • This focus on “things” fails to capture just how much work needs to be done on the Internet.

First things first… shameless pitch time. Last week, I sat down with RCR Wireless for the inaugural episode of its weekly IoT show, Connect This. Take a look; I’ll wait right here.

Good show? Please feel free to share it with your friends.

But, as fun as it was to do the show, and despite the fact that it was about trends in a hot high-tech market, I still found myself feeling like a bit of a fish out of water. The show was about devices and what will drive adoption. All important stuff, but I had to fight the urge to dive headlong into the real blood and guts, not of what will drive IoT adoption, but what will enable it… you know, the Network Matter. Continue reading “What’s So Hard About Building an Internet of Things, Anyway?”

Nokia Analyst Conference – Automation Saved Managed Services, but Will That Work as Nokia Looks to Become a Leading SI?

Jason Marcheck
Jason Marcheck

Summary Bullets:

  • Nokia’s annual analyst conference featured a heavy dose of Services-oriented messaging throughout the proceedings
  • Nokia aims to deliver up to 80% of its managed and/or professional services via remote delivery by 2020
  • While getting remote delivery right helped Nokia turn around the profitability of its Services business, it could be questionable how effective that model can be as the company moves more aggressively on SI-based services

At Nokia’s recently concluded industry analyst conference – held annually in Boston – I got to see a few things that I rarely see. First, I saw snow falling from the sky for the first time since, well, the last Nokia conference (Personal note: I live in Texas). Second, all in attendance got to see a clearly energized and animated panel of senior leadership from Nokia regarding the company’s short and long-term future. Now, this is not to say that Nokia is a boring company. After all, didn’t it practically invent the concept of Sauna? However, over the past few years, Nokia’s “body language” skewed towards being reserved in light of the painstaking company transformation it was trying to execute in order to save the company. Continue reading “Nokia Analyst Conference – Automation Saved Managed Services, but Will That Work as Nokia Looks to Become a Leading SI?”