Welcome!

Containers Expo Blog Authors: AppDynamics Blog, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Dana Gardner, Roger Strukhoff

Blog Feed Post

Unlocking Opportunity in Software-Defined Services with ESP

As an industry, our visions of progress in SP offerings are filled with virtualized functions, elastic workloads, orchestration, APIs, scalable infrastructures and almost everything software-defined.  None of this is flawed, and we get strong, regular glimpses of the potential in such heavily virtualized models in an array of domains regularly.  For example, intriguing offerings are presented to us mid-session in streaming video services based on our individual profiles and histories. Auto-scaling in hybrid cloud IT for cost-effective performance improvements is enabled using the provider’s service management API.  And, optimizations in cost and performance of multi-layer network services is proven to deliver measurable benefits by managing each layer as part of a unified, abstract service design applied to each underlying layer.

 

With this progress in hand toward realizing a more agile SP market, we have not yet arrived at a point where complete automation of service composition and deployment across the array of applications operators target has been achieved.  We are on the cusp of realizing complete frameworks and deployment kits to put that goal within reach, but still have important hurdles to overcome in making the vision real.

 

Let’s look at where the improvements in integration remain to be made.

 

If we look at it as a ‘start-to-finish’ checklist of requirements for an elastic, software-driven environment, we can start by noting that strong solutions for automating development and deployment of applications into cloud-based services in real-time have started to dramatically shorten the time to delivery for new application functions.  Introducing new features into Google or Netflix or other ‘web-scale’ application systems is ample demonstration of this method’s value.  Expanding DevOps capabilities to new functional areas (like inserting new functions into programmable networks) is key to expanding the value of services.  Similarly dramatic progress has been made in creating and managing virtual infrastructures for compute, storage and network functions in many XaaS environments, and we see intriguing service offerings and bundles emerging ‘one by one’ as operators overcome their individual service delivery barriers.  But, can we blend these individual ‘buckets’ of virtualized service delivery solutions into more complete end-to-end service creation frameworks?

 

As we make progress in individual domains, a hurdle remaining to be overcome is the integration of toolsets into a suite of offerings that fits multiple SP situations and enables them to generate services in a manner that will fit their adoption profile at the pace that works for them.  To add urgency to this point, one of the critical success factors recently identified by the ETSI Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) working groups in the achievement of their goals is development of a suitably strong management and orchestration (MANO) framework that will enable virtualized network functions to be deployed effectively in conjunction with the other elements of service providers’ multi-faceted infrastructures. 

 

Helping overcome these barriers is a task that can be taken on by suppliers with sufficient range of vision, offerings and resources to enable SPs’ virtualized solution deliveries productively.  Let’s break this down into two overall dimensions where packaging, functionality, and go-to-market leadership can be provided:  having the right functionality, and having the right consumption models for SPs to choose between.

 

On functionality, if a supplier starts by being able to profile the business parameters of an SP’s offering and populate them into the charging, cataloguing, provisioning, and other OSS/BSS systems needed to commercialize the service, this accomplishes a key element in the flow of automation that results.  From there if the supplier can offer a portfolio of functional elements – either virtual or physical – to support a wide range of operator services, and provides them in a manner that integrates with orchestration and management required for operation, a second key step in deployment simplification has been taken. It’s easy to see how this aspect of portfolio breadth is impactful in infrastructure functions like firewalling, switching, policy enforcement, computing platforms, and others.  And it is impactful in application-oriented software offerings like video content libraries, collaboration system modules, and vertical industry applications (smart grid, health care, transportation, etc.).  If the supplier is also in a position to offer templates and policies that can be used by an operator to jump-start implementation in the target virtual infrastructure, we start to have the level of integrated portfolio operators have been hungry for as the virtualized and software-defined infrastructure transformations have been developing.

 

Going beyond this, recognizing that operators are functioning at different paces of development in their own portfolios, it’s equally meaningful if suppliers can deliver their solutions at varying levels of integration to facilitate uptake by SPs. For example, an individual function such as content inspection or SP wireless LAN may be of interest to an operator a la carte, ready for integration into a service delivery framework as the operator prefers.  Or, a different operator may be more interested if those functions are available as part of a pre-integrated, certified solution including orchestration, templates, and the functional components themselves, ready to deploy as a pre-tested module. Or still, another operator who’s interested in lower risk in trialing and deployment may want to obtain these capabilities ‘as a service’ from the supplier to minimize training, deployment and go-to-market overhead in determining if the service is going to ‘take’ in their subscriber base.  Offering such a range of consumption models provides a boost to the SP community in being able to accelerate deployments at a pace each SP deems is best for them.

 

At this early stage of the developing market for virtualized infrastructure solutions, coming to the table with that many areas of requirement addressed – and still being open to work with an open, standards-based ecosystem of suppliers to contribute to working SP solutions – is a crucial part of accelerating progress.  We look at Cisco’s introduction of the Evolved Services Platform (ESP) as a leading example of the top-to-bottom portfolio breadth and flexibility in how elements can be adopted by SPs that will foster development of innovative and virtualized services faster.  At this stage of the market for virtualized service delivery platforms ESP provides a unifying framework for integration of capabilities productively, and still leaves the door open for innovation in all the key components of the value chain.  It should prove very effective in stimulating uptake for powerful, versatile service delivery platforms in a wide range of application categories.  In this sense it helps operators overcome many of the barriers to adoption they have faced when considering how to take advantage of important innovations at different points in the virtualized service delivery platforms landscape.  By overcoming those barriers it becomes an ingredient for achieving real progress and benefits in the broad transformation of SP infrastructures to becoming more fully software-driven infrastructures.

 

Read and download for more information: ACG Research Paper: Business Case for Cisco Evolved Services Platform and NFV

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Deborah Strickland

The articles presented here are blog posts from members of our Service Provider Mobility community. Deborah Strickland is a Web and Social Media Program Manager at Cisco. Follow us on Twitter @CiscoSPMobility.

@ThingsExpo Stories
What does it look like when you have access to cloud infrastructure and platform under the same roof? Let’s talk about the different layers of Technology as a Service: who cares, what runs where, and how does it all fit together. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Phil Jackson, Lead Technology Evangelist at SoftLayer, an IBM company, spoke about the picture being painted by IBM Cloud and how the tools being crafted can help fill the gaps in your IT infrastructure.
SYS-CON Events announced today the Enterprise IoT Bootcamp, being held November 1-2, 2016, in conjunction with 19th Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Combined with real-world scenarios and use cases, the Enterprise IoT Bootcamp is not just based on presentations but with hands-on demos and detailed walkthroughs. We will introduce you to a variety of real world use cases prototyped using Arduino, Raspberry Pi, BeagleBone, Spark, and Intel Edison. Y...
Why do your mobile transformations need to happen today? Mobile is the strategy that enterprise transformation centers on to drive customer engagement. In his general session at @ThingsExpo, Roger Woods, Director, Mobile Product & Strategy – Adobe Marketing Cloud, covered key IoT and mobile trends that are forcing mobile transformation, key components of a solid mobile strategy and explored how brands are effectively driving mobile change throughout the enterprise.
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
Fact is, enterprises have significant legacy voice infrastructure that’s costly to replace with pure IP solutions. How can we bring this analog infrastructure into our shiny new cloud applications? There are proven methods to bind both legacy voice applications and traditional PSTN audio into cloud-based applications and services at a carrier scale. Some of the most successful implementations leverage WebRTC, WebSockets, SIP and other open source technologies. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Da...
If you had a chance to enter on the ground level of the largest e-commerce market in the world – would you? China is the world’s most populated country with the second largest economy and the world’s fastest growing market. It is estimated that by 2018 the Chinese market will be reaching over $30 billion in gaming revenue alone. Admittedly for a foreign company, doing business in China can be challenging. Often changing laws, administrative regulations and the often inscrutable Chinese Interne...
An IoT product’s log files speak volumes about what’s happening with your products in the field, pinpointing current and potential issues, and enabling you to predict failures and save millions of dollars in inventory. But until recently, no one knew how to listen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Dan Gettens, Chief Research Officer at OnProcess, will discuss recent research by Massachusetts Institute of Technology and OnProcess Technology, where MIT created a new, breakthrough analytics model f...
Personalization has long been the holy grail of marketing. Simply stated, communicate the most relevant offer to the right person and you will increase sales. To achieve this, you must understand the individual. Consequently, digital marketers developed many ways to gather and leverage customer information to deliver targeted experiences. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Lou Casal, Founder and Principal Consultant at Practicala, discussed how the Internet of Things (IoT) has accelerated our abil...
24Notion is full-service global creative digital marketing, technology and lifestyle agency that combines strategic ideas with customized tactical execution. With a broad understand of the art of traditional marketing, new media, communications and social influence, 24Notion uniquely understands how to connect your brand strategy with the right consumer. 24Notion ranked #12 on Corporate Social Responsibility - Book of List.
Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is expected in the amount of information being processed, managed, analyzed, and acted upon by enterprise IT. This amazing is not part of some distant future - it is happening today. One report shows a 650% increase in enterprise data by 2020. Other estimates are even higher....
Adobe is changing the world though digital experiences. Adobe helps customers develop and deliver high-impact experiences that differentiate brands, build loyalty, and drive revenue across every screen, including smartphones, computers, tablets and TVs. Adobe content solutions are used daily by millions of companies worldwide-from publishers and broadcasters, to enterprises, marketing agencies and household-name brands. Building on its established design leadership, Adobe enables customers not o...
Everyone knows that truly innovative companies learn as they go along, pushing boundaries in response to market changes and demands. What's more of a mystery is how to balance innovation on a fresh platform built from scratch with the legacy tech stack, product suite and customers that continue to serve as the business' foundation. In his General Session at 19th Cloud Expo, Michael Chambliss, Head of Engineering at ReadyTalk, will discuss why and how ReadyTalk diverted from healthy revenue an...
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform and how we integrate our thinking to solve complicated problems. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, will demonstrate how to move beyond today's coding paradigm ...
The Transparent Cloud-computing Consortium (abbreviation: T-Cloud Consortium) will conduct research activities into changes in the computing model as a result of collaboration between "device" and "cloud" and the creation of new value and markets through organic data processing High speed and high quality networks, and dramatic improvements in computer processing capabilities, have greatly changed the nature of applications and made the storing and processing of data on the network commonplace.
Digital transformation is too big and important for our future success to not understand the rules that apply to it. The first three rules for winning in this age of hyper-digital transformation are: Advantages in speed, analytics and operational tempos must be captured by implementing an optimized information logistics system (OILS) Real-time operational tempos (IT, people and business processes) must be achieved Businesses that can "analyze data and act and with speed" will dominate those t...
Almost two-thirds of companies either have or soon will have IoT as the backbone of their business in 2016. However, IoT is far more complex than most firms expected. How can you not get trapped in the pitfalls? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tony Shan, a renowned visionary and thought leader, will introduce a holistic method of IoTification, which is the process of IoTifying the existing technology and business models to adopt and leverage IoT. He will drill down to the components in this fra...
As ridesharing competitors and enhanced services increase, notable changes are occurring in the transportation model. Despite the cost-effective means and flexibility of ridesharing, both drivers and users will need to be aware of the connected environment and how it will impact the ridesharing experience. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Timothy Evavold, Executive Director Automotive at Covisint, will discuss key challenges and solutions to powering a ride sharing and/or multimodal model in the a...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 19th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world and ThingsExpo Silicon Valley Call for Papers is now open.
I'm a lonely sensor. I spend all day telling the world how I'm feeling, but none of the other sensors seem to care. I want to be connected. I want to build relationships with other sensors to be more useful for my human. I want my human to understand that when my friends next door are too hot for a while, I'll soon be flaming. And when all my friends go outside without me, I may be left behind. Don't just log my data; use the relationship graph. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ryan Boyd, Engi...