VMware unveils next-gen NFV platform for 5G and multi-cloud networks

13 June 2018 | Natalie Bannerman

VMware launches its vCloud NFV-OpenStack Edition 3.0, the next-gen network functions virtualisation (NFV) platform, for communications service providers (CSPs).

Shekar Ayyar 200x200This latest version of vCloud NFV-OpenStack Edition which includes VMware Integrated OpenStack-Carrier Edition 5.0 enables VMware to deliver improved network performance, new carrier-grade networking capabilities and intent-based service assurance.

"VMware’s NFV solution is deployed in more than 50 CSPs globally supporting a wide variety of use cases and more than 300 million mobile subscribers. And with the imminent arrival of 5G, a new approach to the telco network and cloud is required to solve for the hyper distribution of virtual network functions, applications and data," said Shekar Ayyar, executive vice president and general manager of Telco NFV Group at VMware. "With VMware vCloud NFV-OpenStack 3.0, service providers will be able to build software-defined, programmable, highly-distributed Telco Distributed Clouds based on open standards to deliver new advanced services to consumers, and quality-of-service-based network slices to serve the application needs for a wide variety of industries."

The new offering aims to improve the total economics of software-defined, open standards-based 5G and multi-cloud telco networks. VMware vCloud NFV delivers a 5G-ready NFV infrastructure (NFVI) platform that supports the rapid rollout of next-gen services with low latency and high network throughput, as well as provides support for a massively distributed set of end points and devices.

VMware vCloud NFV enables CSPs to create an end-to-end software-based network architecture to deliver consistent, pervasive connectivity and intrinsic security to applications and virtual network functions wherever they are located, at global scale from core to cloud to edge, and independent of underlying physical infrastructure or location.

"A highly performant and reliable NFV platform is key to unlocking the cloud efficiencies that NFV promised," said Caroline Chappell, research director and lead analyst for Analysys Mason’s software-controlled networking research program. "It’s important that operators gain the benefits of a carrier-grade and scalable NFVI without sacrificing support for open industry standards and the ability to execute virtual network functions from multiple vendors. As operators begin to scale commercial NFV deployments, they will need robust platform features and the potential in future to run the same NFVI in multiple clouds."

Speaking as a customer of the VMware vCloud NFV solution, Tetsuya Funabashi, senior executive vice president of NTT Com, said: "NTT Com shares VMware’s vision of the Virtual Cloud Network, which will provide consistent, pervasive connectivity and security for apps and data across Telco Distributed Clouds. As resources become more distributed in the 5G/IoT era, telecom networks will demand greater performance from the software-defined networking infrastructure across core, cloud and edge environments. We verified the latest NSX managed virtual distributed switch and confirmed that it gained competitive performance on short packets. We are looking forward to this technology and further collaboration with VMware."

Other customers include Telefonica, Telia and Dell EMC. Telefonica says it has been "collaborating with VMware" and that it has "demonstrated significant performance advancements of vCloud NFV’s new switching architecture in our test labs."

Telia referred to the whitepaper it produced with VMware, adding that it "has already come a long way setting detailed requirements and we consider VMware vCloud NFV 3.0 with integrated OpenStack a step in the right direction to help us accelerate our journey towards 5G even further."

As for Dell, the company says that the two are "accelerating time to deployment and improving overall economics for Telco Clouds" adding that "the latest release of VMware vCloud NFV 3.0 will be able to help CSPs and mobile operators take advantage of new opportunities more quickly, flexibly, and efficiently while cutting costs and preparing for the 5G future."

Topics: VMware, NFV, vCloud, OpenStack, CSP, Shekar Ayyar, Caroline Chappell, Tetsuya Funabashi, 5G