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Telco meets IT cloud at VMworld 2015

This blog is by Ester Navarro from the Networks business of Nokia.

It’s always a great feeling to receive clear validation that your strategy is right on track! And that’s how I felt last week at VMworld 2015 in Barcelona – an event on cloud and virtualization organized by VMware, a leading virtualization company. Around 10,000 attendees, the majority from the IT industry but also telco operators, were on hand to witness the latest innovations in cloud technology.

It was the first time that VMware invited nine partner organizations to its annual event to present the topic of Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) for the telecom industry. This proves how cloud technology, which has long been important in the IT world, is becoming increasingly essential to telecommunications. In fact, we see it as validation of Nokia’s strategy to merge the IT and telco worlds.

 Jai Thattil, Ester Navarro and Tommy Lindgren at VMworld 2015.
Jai Thattil, Ester Navarro and Tommy Lindgren at VMworld 2015.

At our booth in the Telecom NFV solution pavilion, we demonstrated our Nokia Telco Cloud virtualized network functions on top of VMware virtualization technology. I was also pleased to participate in the NFV executive forum, which gathered some 60 customers, NFV vendors and one analyst in round table discussions and panels to debate the future of virtualization and cloud in mobile telecommunications. Everybody agreed that virtualization is the way forward and that mobile operators must implement cloud technology if they want to stay profitable and be able to meet market demands. However, there are still a number of challenges holding back the NFV roll out, namely: immaturity of the cloud orchestration, slow operational and organizational transformation as well as the slow progress made in standardization.

I had the opportunity to participate in another panel discussion, where the key topic was “How gender balance drives success within an organization”. It was arranged by VMwomen, the VMware organization for female employees that promotes and encourages women in the ICT industry. Nokia has also been at the forefront of promoting similar activities for women with our ‘Greenhouse’ initiative, which I am proud to be a part of. I’m glad to see how business women around the world are cooperating to bring diversity into the technology world, and in particular into the IT and telecommunications industries. We still have a long way to go however, as evidenced by the limited presence of female attendees at the technology events such as VMworld.

Next year, we hope to see a substantial increase in the amount of NFV companies as it will indicate that cloud has become business as usual for the telco operators, just as it is for the IT industry today. Likewise, it would be great to see a strong female presence since gender equilibrium can ultimately benefit the industry at large.

This congress certainly confirmed to me how vendors need to partner to reach an open eco system in order to help operators in their transformation journeys, which is very much at the heart of Nokia’s Telco Cloud strategy.

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Share your thoughts on this topic by replying below – or join the Twitter discussion with @nokianetworks using #NetworksPerform #mobilebroadband #NFV #TelcoCloud #SDN #VMworld.

Ester Navarro

About Ester Navarro

Ester Navarro leads the Mobile Networks Telco Cloud product marketing team. Even in her spare time she’s cloud focused, either climbing mountain peaks or inspecting them from above while travelling around the world.

Tweet me at @esternava

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