NTT, Salesforce and vendors join move to open digital architecture
The industry’s move to open standards accelerated today with the decision by Ericsson, Huawei, NTT and Salesforce to join the TM Forum’s Open Digital Architecture project.
Their decision – along with that of eight smaller companies – takes the number of companies publicly committed to creating a market for standardised and interoperable software components to 42.
Salesforces VP John Carney said: “Only through collaboration can the industry can attain the knowledge and agree on common standards and assets such as Open APIs required to kindle a software marketplace.”
He added: “We believe the shift to standardised, components-based, cloud native models will reduce barriers and make it easier to generate value around 5G.”
The TM Forum’s CEO, Nik Willetts, said: “Adding these new companies alongside our existing committed members demonstrates that the whole industry is now on board with the development of standardised plug-and-play components, data models and open APIs. Now we must stay focused to turn the commitments into reality.”
The TM Forum’s move also highlights a unanimity among the industry – with Chinese and US operators and vendors working together to achieve a common aim with companies from other parts of the world.
Huawei’s chief digital transformation officer, Che Haiping (pictured), said: “A rapid and radical shift to an open, modern, service-based architecture that enables new business models and operational models and uses the open digital architecture and open APIs as guidelines is critical for digital transformation of the telco industry.”
His words were echoed by Jan Karlsson, senior vice president and head of the digital services business area in Ericsson: “We are pleased to be adding our name to the list of supporters of the Forum’s manifesto and look forward to collaborating and defining future standards.”
The TM Forum said its open digital architecture (ODA) “is a blueprint for modular, cloud-based, open digital platforms that can be orchestrated using AI [artificial intelligence]”.
It noted that “ODA replaces traditional operational and business support systems (OSS/BSS) with a new approach to building software for the telecoms industry, opening a market for standardised, cloud-native software components, and enabling communication service providers and suppliers to invest in IT for new and differentiated services instead of maintenance and integration”.