Communication service providers (CSPs) are ramping up NFV- and SDN-related investments to realize greater cost savings and efficiencies, according to Technology Business Research Inc.’s (TBR) 2H18 Telecom Software Mediated Networks (NFV/SDN) Customer Adoption Study. This increase in investment will be driven by two underlying factors: CSPs under pressure to realize cost savings as their connectivity businesses remain under pressure and 5G pushing CSPs to pull forward their NFV and SDN road maps.
5G is greatly enhanced when using virtualization, especially when enabling and maximizing the benefits of network slicing and achieving better RAN economics. Though most CSPs intend to initially deploy the non-standalone (NSA) standard of 5G, which tethers 5G radio with EPC, an eventual upgrade to the standalone (SA) standard, which tethers 5G radio to a 5G core, will become a reality in the early 2020s. 5G core is inherently virtualized, and CSPs will be keen to prepare their networks to fully maximize the benefits of utilizing a virtualized network architecture, including, but not limited to, increasing agility, flexibility, visibility and cost efficiency.
TBR’s Telecom Software Mediated Networks (NFV/SDN) Customer Adoption Studyprovides an in-depth examination of how operators are planning, preparing and executing to succeed in the NFV and SDN market. TBR surveyed 50 people in operations, procurement and IT roles at 25 of the leading Tier 1 telecom service providers worldwide to gain insight into their NFV and SDN adoption plans. The study includes insight into service provider strategy, as well as service providers’ perceptions of supplier positioning and key benefits and obstacles.