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Digital. Disruptive Again.

Nov 21, 2013

ONF Executive Director Dan Pitt takes a look back at the recent TM Forum Digital Disruption 2013. 

In late October, I attended TM Forum Digital Disruption 2013 in San Jose, California. The digital revolution is disrupting every industry category while creating new possibilities and changing the way business is done. Aimed at helping businesses and enterprises conquer challenges and seize the opportunities presented by the digital world, Digital Disruption brings together service providers and their partners to address vital issues such as reducing cost and risk, improving market retention and growth, and increasing revenue by introducing innovative new services.

As an ONF liaison, TM Forum invited me to speak on an expert panel, “The Impact of Software-Defined Networks (SDNs) on Agile Operations,” as part of the Agile Business and IT Forum at the event. The panel discussed SDN and agile operations issues including changes to the operations process, cost structure and network management, ramifications and impacts, and assessment of challenges.

TM Forum made a serious effort to demonstrate real-world examples of disruption while featuring many new companies and offering sessions discussing game-changing technologies that present real opportunities and threats to the telecoms industry. There was an impressive collection of disruptive demonstrations, each featuring multiple vendors and at least one application. One of the demos was sponsored by ONF and featured member company Netronome, in cooperation with non-members ServiceMesh and PLUMgrid. Demonstrating its OpenFlow® 1.3 Gateway Switch, Netronome was able to show how the gateway connects a multi-tenant data center to an MPLS WAN, therefore creating a second data center. OpenFlow® 1.3 prioritizes video services while providing security by hosting the capability as a virtualized network function (VNF in ETSI/NFV parlance) for a multi-tenant data center across a carrier IP/MPLS transport network.

Digital Disruption also featured joint workshops with ETSI NFV, SDN and virtualization sessions, and an expo. TM Forum has formed productive working relationships with other organizations such as ETSI NFV, ODCA, and ECLC, and ONF is currently establishing a partnership with TM Forum through the foundation’s liaison program. The event made it clear that the telecoms community is rapidly educating itself on disruptive new technologies like SDN, and TM Forum is making continuous commitments to and investments into Catalyst Projects, including ones with ONF.

-Dan Pitt, Executive Director

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