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NTT DoCoMo Picks Ericsson, Fujitsu, NEC for Commercial NFV Deployment

By Paula Bernier March 03, 2015

NTT DoCoMo this week announced it has tapped Ericsson to provide it with the Cloud Execution Environment and Cloud Manager for its network functions virtualization efforts. The service provider is also working with Fujitsu and NEC on commercial deployment of NFV.

The carrier’s goal is to introduce NFV into its mobile network commercially in Japan starting in March of 2016, and elsewhere after that.

Ericsson Cloud Execution Environment, which embraces Openstack, creates a virtualization layer, providing compute and storage resources via hypervisor and networking resources. The Cloud Manager orchestrates onboarding, provisioning, quality and lifecycle of virtualized network and IT functions.

Fujitsu and NEC, meanwhile, are outfitting NTT DoCoMo with virtualized evolved packet core software.

The three vendor announcements came yesterday, just as the giant Mobile World Congress was kicking off in Barcelona.

Last year at Mobile World Congress, NEC demonstrated what it called the world's first commercially available vEPC and virtualized customer premises equipment.

Back in September of 2013, NTT announced that it was working on a research and development project addressing SDN equipment compatibility within WAN environments. That effort involved the carrier collaborating with Fujitu and NEC, among others.

NEC has also been pushing its BSS/OSS solutions, which it got through its acquisition of NetCracker. In fact, just last week NEC and its subsidiary, NetCracker Technology, announced they have established a global business brand and structure called NEC/NetCracker SDN/NFV Solutions, which will have units dedicated to delivery, sales and marketing, and research and development. But Ericsson, which NTT DoCoMo has selected for the BSS/OSS functions, brings to the table significant experience in this area, having purchased Telcordia several years ago.

While the above-noted deal involved NTT DoCoMo, NTT Communications Group has also been a pioneer on the NFV and SDN fronts. In May of last year the company made its Arcstar Universal One services available in more than 190 countries, after having announced the offering in late 2013 and introduced it in March of 2014. The SDN-based service allows business users to create and control networks at will via a web portal.

Edited by Dominick Sorrentino

Executive Editor, TMC

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