Ericsson and Nokia Celebrate Their Anniversaries; What Makes for Vendor Longevity?

David Snow - Principal Analyst, IP Services Infrastructure

David Snow – Principal Analyst, IP Services Infrastructure

Summary Bullets:                 

  • Nokia and Ericsson both celebrated company anniversaries; company longevity in telecoms is rare
  • The last decade has been particularly tumultuous and maybe Huawei is demonstrating a “third way”

A humorous tweet from CMO Barry French of Nokia a few weeks back referred to Ericsson as being “the new kid on the block” as Ericsson celebrated “140 years of innovation”. Nearly a year ago, Nokia also had an anniversary; “Nokia at 150: from pulp mill to the programmable world”.  This drew attention to a game that is periodically played between competing companies – the game of longevityRead more of this post

MWC16: Wireless Backhaul Roundup – Will a New Approach Improve E-Band’s Tepid Popularity?

Ed Gubbins

Ed Gubbins

Summary Bullets:

  • Multiple backhaul vendors are offering (or plan to offer) new solutions that bond E-band links with traditional microwave.
  • This approach has pros and cons, but it will need to overcome the sources of lackluster market traction for E-band backhaul thus far.

In the wake of Mobile World Congress, we at Current Analysis have offered up our takes on the most important takeaways from the show in terms of new radio access networks solutions, 5G activity, IP services infrastructure and more. When it comes to the area of wireless backhaul, the most notable developments related to E-band millimeter wave technology. Read more of this post

INFOGRAPHIC: Key Findings from Current Analysis’ 2015 Carrier SDN/NFV Survey

Jason Marcheck

Jason Marcheck

Summary Bullets:

  • In 2015, Current Analysis surveyed 100 decision makers at network operators regarding challenges facing network deployments, what they need most from their vendors, and which suppliers they view most favorably.
  • Although a key focus of vendor messaging in 2015 was helping operators to operationalize SDN/NFV, operators are facing more fundamental questions standing in the way of their decision to fully embrace network virtualization: uncertain ROI.
  • When asked what one thing operators feel the SDN/NFV supplier community is not adequately addressing, VNF performance dominated the responses. A word cloud below summarizes the key responses, with the size of each word corresponding to the frequency in which they appeared in the response results.
  • Cisco and Huawei have topped SDN/NFV vendor perception results for the past several years. However, IT-oriented suppliers – namely HP and IBM – made up considerable ground in 2015, now ranking closely behind Cisco and Huawei as top perceived SDN/NFV suppliers.
  • Ericsson also made a considerable jump in perception to round out the ‘Top 5’ in terms of best perceived vendors in the survey.

Read more of this post

What Got Ignored in 2015: The Technologies, Topics, and Events You Overlooked

Peter Jarich

Peter Jarich

Summary Bullets:

  • Every year, many of our analyses get largely ignored – read many fewer times than the rest. In 2015, the topics of these reports were varied, including: big data, OSS/BSS, branding, video, SDN/NFV solutions and corporate acquisitions.
  • In many ways, the least read reports shared common themes with the most read reports. To that end, all include important insights key for telecom vendor and operator success.

Looking at the top-read reports of 2015 (see What Was Hot in 2015: The Technologies, Topics, and Events You Cared About) was an exercise in tracking what was most important in telecom over the last year. It might not be surprising, then, that SDN/NFV, 5G and strategic vendor moves (acquisitions and partnerships) dominated the list. Against that backdrop, it should be surprising that many of the same topics were well represented in a list of our least-read reports. And yet, looking at reports that generated well below average readership (25% or less of the average 2015 report), this is exactly what we found; reports focused on SDN/NFV, 5G, vendor acquisitions…not to mention video solutions, data analytics and back-office evolutions.

The message? Read more of this post

What Was Hot in 2015: The Technologies, Topics, and Events You Cared About

Peter Jarich

Peter Jarich

Summary Bullets:

  • In 2015, SDN and NFV continued to dominate our “most read reports” list, with 5G gaining interest as well.
  • Beyond specific technologies, major vendor moves – partnerships and acquisitions – garnered plenty of attention.
  • Ignoring smaller vendors or less buzzed-about technologies could be dangerous if it leaves vendors and service providers exposed to disruptive market forces.

In an attempt to provide insight into a wide array of telecom network trends and technologies, it’s only natural that some of our analyses will be better read than others. That attention may be due to any number of factors, but interest in the topic is generally the most important driver. In other words, reports about topics that people care about should be the most read, with the top analyses of 2015 pointing to the most important trends and themes of the year. Read more of this post

C-RAN Is About to Get More Serious, but No, the RAN Will Never Disappear into the Cloud

Ed Gubbins

Ed Gubbins

Summary Bullets:

  • C-RAN’s adoption is likely to grow significantly soon, thanks in part to evolutions in the underlying technologies.
  • Long term, future RANs will see a dynamic mix of centralized and distributed functions.

In 2016, we’re likely to hear even more about C-RAN than we already have. It’s not a new concept, and plenty of operators have deployed mobile access network architectures in which the baseband processing units are centralized, stacked or pooled, linked to remote radio units elsewhere. As portions of the network become increasingly virtualized, baseband processing will become virtualized, too – thus, centralized RAN will evolve into cloud RAN. This won’t happen everywhere, of course, but its use is likely to spread thanks in part to some significant advancements in C-RAN technology coming soon. Read more of this post

Mobile World Congress Shanghai: RAN Innovation – From Drones and Small Cells to Massive MIMO

Peter Jarich

Peter Jarich

Summary Bullets:

  • Across conference sessions and vendor exhibits, Mobile World Congress Shanghai showcased a myriad of wireless network technologies along with deployment traction.
  • Of the technologies showcased, RAN innovation and solutions took center stage.
  • Many of these RAN innovations focused on regional network demands.
  • Where the innovations showcased an ability of nimble vendors to develop new solutions, the onus is on larger rivals to highlight the value of end-to-end capabilities and proven operations.

Earlier this week, we called out a Mobile World Congress Shanghai panel and presentation focused on network virtualization. Outside the conference sessions, we can debate how big the event truly was; it’s unclear how many people came to see smartphone cases (and smartphones) vs. cutting-edge network R&D. What is clear, however, is that the networks R&D and deployments that seemed most visible (in announcements and show floor exhibits) were focused on the RAN. Given the dominant role that the RAN plays in operator CapEx, this focus wasn’t surprising – neither were the RAN themes on display at the event, with a few exceptions. Read more of this post