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Ciena CTO Says NFV, SDN, More Ubiquitous Cloud Will Take Off in 2014

By Paula Bernier January 22, 2014

This year the cloud will deliver a more ubiquitous user experience, telcos will begin to implement network functions virtualization, and software-defined networking will move into production networks. These are three of the predictions for 2014 offered up by David Tomalin, Ciena EMEA CTO.

This is important because it adds yet another voice to the growing call for business and network transformation at the service providers, which can use new technologies like NFV and SDN to lower costs and – more importantly – better position themselves to compete in the new on-demand marketplace.

“At the moment network service providers must deploy sufficient capacity for each appliance type, for each service silo and in each metro area to handle the local peak demand, meaning high operational expenses and extremely inefficient use of capital assets,” writes Tomalin. “The rise of NFV in 2014 will allow the control and processing functions for these network appliances to be virtualized, allowing for each function to be grown and shrunk as necessary – essentially giving network operators [the] same agility, efficiency, and operational gains that cloud computing brought to enterprise IT.”

Image via Shutterstock

Tomalin goes on to say that this year will see the beginning of what he expects to be two- to three-year commercial rollout efforts of SDN. (To learn more about SDN, join TMC at SDN Precon on Jan. 28 – which is one week from today – in Miami.)

“Driven by increasing pressure to improve financial metrics and deliver better rates of return, SDN and NFV will be increasingly pivotal in business proposals, both RFIs and RFPs,” Tomalin predicted.

Other important trends to look for this year, according to Tomalin, include more widespread use of big data; an increased focus on metro aggregation, driven primarily by the ongoing growth in mobile traffic; consolidation networks operated by government entities in EMEA; and the adoption of Ethernet networks for smart grid applications. 

Edited by Alisen Downey

Executive Editor, TMC

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