Year after year, it becomes ever more interesting to consider the top trends that will shaping the telecommunications industry. One of the more important drivers is the acceleration of Third Network services. These services combine the agility and ubiquity of the Internet with the performance and security of CE 2.0 (Carrier Ethernet) networks to bring users new capabilities.

Emerging Third Network services are optimized for the hyper-connected world and the digital economy. They provide an on-demand experience with user-directed control over cloud connectivity and service capabilities. Third Network services are delivered over virtualized, automated and interconnected networks powered by LSO (Lifecycle Service Orchestration), NFV, SDN and CE 2.0.

MEF, the driving force enabling agile, assured and orchestrated Third Network services, recently  released a white paper titled ”An Industry Initiative For Third Generation Network and Services,” which describes the industry vision for the evolution and transformation of network connectivity services as well as the networks used to deliver them.

The white paper was spearheaded by MEF, and co-authored by ON.Lab, ONOS, OPEN-O, OpenDaylight (ODL), the Open Networking Foundation (ONF), Open Platform for NFV (OPNFV), and TM Forum.

The white paper examines:

  • Business drivers for Third Network transformation
  • Key attributes of the Third Network
  • The LSO-based framework for coordinating all of the moving parts to create Third Network Services
  • Major work areas requiring industry collaboration to ensure orchestrated services function reliably across multi-operator networks

The co-authors of this report worked together to develop generalized information models, standardized service definitions, comprehensive LSO functionality, standardized open APIs, certification programs for orchestrated services and professionals and reference implementations for Third Network services and technologies.

“This white paper represents a noteworthy milestone in uniting open source projects and standards organizations to deliver a common vision for Third Network services,” explained MEF President Nan Chen. “We want to thank our partners in this collaborative effort. I am really excited about the impact that this will have in moving the industry forward.”

Here’s what the co-authors had to say about the report:

“Getting so many important industry players aligned on a shared vision is especially important for developing standardized open APIs that will enable orchestration of inter-provider services. Close collaboration will help us realize specifications in code more quickly, test things out in reference implementations, and provide rapid feedback for further spec development.”                      

Pascal Menezes, CTO, MEF and lead author of the white paper

“ON.Lab and ONF are pleased to collaborate with MEF on its Third Network. ON.Lab and ONF remain committed to building open source SDN and NFV platforms and solutions such as ONOS and CORD, and developing software-defined standards that help accelerate the adoption of SDN and NFV by network operators. We plan to offer ONOS and CORD as open reference platforms for MEF’s Third Network and help realize this vision.”

Guru Parulkar, Executive Director of ONF and ON.Lab

“TM Forum is happy to support and participate in multi-SDO efforts like this. TM Forum has recognized for many years that no one SDO or Open group will be able to address the complexities emerging in the Digital Economy. We think it is key that efforts like this drive us toward shared ideas and goals and remove unnecessary divergence in the industry.”                                

Kenneth Dilbeck, VP Collaboration and R&D, TM Forum

“OpenDaylight is pleased to support MEF as they bring together operators, vendors, and open source projects to ensure end-to-end interoperability and performance as we reinvent the modern network. We look forward to our continued collaboration to create the Third Network and transform network connectivity services.”

– Neela Jacques, Executive Director of the OpenDaylight Project

“Collaboration across the ecosystem is key to realizing a shared vision of the Third Network of agile, ubiquitous and secure network connectivity services. Open and rapid development across open source organizations and standards bodies is crucial to enabling technologies, such as NFV, SDN and LSO, and driving network transformation.”

Heather Kirksey, Director, OPNFV

“OPEN-O is well-aligned with MEF on the need to blend SDN/Legacy connectivity services orchestration with NFV MANO into an end-to-end orchestration strategy. We look forward to collaborating with MEF to adopt open source platforms to realize the LSO vision.”                                         – Marc Cohn, Executive Director of the OPEN-O Project

To read the white paper, click here.