Nokia this week unveiled several new offerings designed to support providers' ongoing implementation of virtualization as a way to reduce costs, simplify operations and improve flexibility.
Targeting cable operators, the vendor took the wraps off a virtualized Distributed Access Architecture (vDAA) that virtualizes the CMTS, and allows providers to configure it as either a R-PHY or R-MACPHY device. Previously, operators had to select which of the two DAA approaches to use before deploying their next-generation network, Jeff White, head of cable strategy and business development at Nokia told UBB2020. Nokia's new vDAA allows operators to switch between remote PHY and remote MACPHY on the same network, he said.
"The big thing that's occurred with DAA coming into play and every cable operator we talk to -- some are more aggressive, some are less aggressive -- but every single cable operator we speak to sees their next-generation architecture as being a distributed access architecture," said White. "Virtualization actually eliminates the need for making this really big, hard architectural decision -- or what was once thought to be a really hard architectural decision -- right up front regarding remote PHY and remote MACPHY."
Continuing in the virtualization vein, Nokia debuted a software-defined access network (SDAN) solution, designed to help service providers more easily build smart, scalable networks without vendor lock-in. Cloud-native software platform Altiplano is designed for operators implementing software-defined networks (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV) because it centralizes and virtualizes the network functionality historically embedded in access equipment. It cuts across network management silos to automatically align the network and allows operators to integrate the SDAN into multi-vendor environments, said Stefaan Vanhastel, head of fixed network marketing at Nokia, in an interview.
The vendor's Lightspan hardware features programmable access nodes that provide cloud and operational agility to an outside plant's copper and fiber, according to the vendor. The hardware includes SX-16F, a 16-port reverse-powered Gfast micro-node that can be reverse-powered from the home. It also includes a stackable software-defined optical line terminal (OLT) with NG-PON.
"Life is getting complicated. You're talking about combining different technologies, different deployment models. We're moving from best-effort megabits per second to latency critical gigabits per second. We're talking deep fiber deployments, lots of remote nodes that need to be managed," he said. "You've got to manage the in-home Wi-Fi network so it's getting very complicated and of course the way to deal with it is virtualization."
"It's really about the use cases that you enable because in the end a virtualization platform is just another way of managing your network," said Vanhastel. "It shouldn't be a goal by itself."
In one use, for example, Gfast deployment time was cut by one-third by virtualizing "a big part of the Gfast nodes" so they automatically powered up, configured and provisioned themselves, he said. In another, NG-PON and virtualization enabled a provider to use an existing network for mobile transport, about half the cost of building a new network, Vanhastel added.
On Jan. 23, Broadband World News hosts a Calix-sponsored webinar that explores several ways CSPs can enhance customer experience and find new business opportunities to avoid devolving into a speed race where nobody wins, not even the customer.
As the pool of savvy, fiber-rich operators across the US rural and regional landscape wanes, the financial community will grow even more interested in acquiring or investing in them, a CoBank report says.
It wasn't long ago that TV was ranked by subscribers as the most important service in the bundle provided by their communications service provider (CSP). Recent research indicates that for nearly three quarters of subscribers, broadband is now the most important service. Broadcast TV is the most important service to only 15% of North American consumers, replaced by OTT video streaming platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney+. In addition, many different competitors are moving aggressively to stake a claim in consumers' homes.
In 2020, CSPs need to fight back by transforming their business models, which are becoming more reliant on a single source of revenue: fixed broadband services.
This webinar will focus on helping CSPs transform their business models by placing a firm focus on delivering a sensational subscriber experience and by offering compelling new services that generate value for subscribers. These actions will reinforce the CSP's strategic position in the home network and position themselves for growth in the next decade.
Key topics include:
Being the first to market with WiFi 6 technology, in response to consumer purchases of new devices over the holidays;
Having the insights needed to proactively resolve issues, often before your subscribers even know that there are issues;
Providing help desk agents with the visibility they need to resolve common subscriber issues more quickly;
Delivering a mobile app, in response to consumer demands for the ability to do some things themselves, rather than having to call technical support; and
Addressing consumer concerns around device security, privacy and control with enhanced security and parental controls.
In this insightful Light Reading radio show, Kurt Raaflaub, Head of Strategic Solutions Marketing, will outline the key service provider challenges, deployment considerations, next-gen Gigabit technologies, and service models to win market share in the rapidly growing MDU market.