As a service provider, it’s hard to envision how Network Function Virtualization (NFV) will affect your network, the services you provide, your customers, your employees and investors.
Many in the industry believe that NFV will become an integral part of service providers’ infrastructure and the foundation for most of the services. According to HIS, the global NFV hardware, software and services market is predicted to reach $11.6 billion in 2019, up from $2.3 billion in 2015.
However, the NFV landscape is still evolving and the key to success would be to find the right path for success. HIS affirms this outlook citing that service providers are still early in the long-term, 10- to 15-year transformation to virtualized networks.
As indicated in the projected numbers, the growth opportunities for NFV are huge. Virtualization of certain services will reduce costs, while other services will increase your portfolio and therefore your revenue while creating a competitive edge. What is needed is to identify the areas that could generate the highest revenue in the short to mid-term, without risking the network and infrastructure, and within reasonable time and cost efforts.
Start with Business Applications
The winning domain for NFV service providers should focus in the near term on business services. Business customers such as enterprises and SMBs are characterized by having high ARPU, passion for quality and changing requirements.
Business applications can be introduced quickly without changing the data center and network architecture. The initial investment is low as platforms and applications can be deployed when and where needed, and quickly upsold to existing and new business customers.
The right path for NFV success
The urgent need of service-provider networks to deliver new innovative added-value services (VAS), any time anywhere, without over-provisioning of network services, requires them to decide, eventually, to move from hardware-based to virtualized networks.
Choosing to deploy NFV, will enable service providers to save costs by maintaining their significant investment in current hardware and methodologies and at the same time stay competitive, with new offering capabilities.