Author Archives: Nigel Stephenson

About Nigel Stephenson

Nigel Stephenson is director of market development, EMEA, within the Telco and Edge Cloud Business Unit at VMware.

Meet VMware NFV Experts at Light Reading’s “OSS in the Era of SDN and NFV” Event.

On November 3rd in London VMware colleagues and myself will be joining industry leaders at this Light Reading event. We will be discussing the impact of virtualization on higher-order Operational Support Systems (OSS), and considering whether this is ‘evolution or revolution’.

Across the globe many operators already rely on VMware infrastructure for their OSS (and internal IT) services. Whether through the deployment of OSS applications on a VMware vSphere environment, or through embedded VMware technology in third party OSS products from leading network equipment providers (NEPs).

NFV and SDN are all about creating a software-defined virtualized service delivery platform. OSS systems largely run on virtualised environments today. So on the face of it, bringing together a virtualized OSS environments and a virtualized service delivery platform should be straight forward – shouldn’t it? Continue reading

VMware NFV Executive Forum Comes To Barcelona and VMworld Europe 2016

Hot on the heels of the massively successful Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) Executive Forum at VMworld Las Vegas, the VMware Telco NFV team will be running another NFV Executive Forum as part of VMworld Europe in Barcelona next week.

The NFV Executive Forum facilitates networking and discussion amongst executives and experts from leading communication service providers (CSPs) and VMware’s successful NFV vendor ecosystem.

As in Las Vegas, the European event will have an interactive format and focus on helping customers understand how they can reduce costs and increase agility by virtualizing their service delivery platform. Continue reading

Appledore Research to speak at NFV Executive Forum, Las Vegas

Summary: Patrick Kelly of Appledore Research, a leading authority on PatrickKellyAppledoremarket trends impacting the Telecommunication Cloud Management Market, to speak at the NFV Executive Forum, Las Vegas.

I’m delighted to announce that Patrick Kelly of Appledore Research Group will be our guest speaker at the NFV Executive Forum, which will take place alongside VMworld 2016 US in Las Vegas on August 31st. The NFV Executive Forum facilitates networking and discussion amongst executives and experts from leading communication service providers (CSPs) and VMware’s successful NFV vendor ecosystem.

As Founder, Partner, and Principal Analyst at Appledore Research, and consultant to the telecommunications industry, Patrick will bring a wealth of experience to share with delegates. Patrick will economic impact of virtualizing communications infrastructures, along with some of the challenges, and how to ensure positive business outcomes. Continue reading

Driving NFV into production and beyond: The NFV Executive Forum at VMworld 2016

Summary: This exclusive, invitation-only executive learning experience will be hosted in association with VMware’s VMworld activities in Las Vegas.

Having received great feedback from the NFV (Network Functions Virtualization) Executive Forum held at last year’s VMworld 2015 Europe, I’m delighted to announce that we will be holding a follow up event at VMworld 2016 US in Las Vegas on August 31st.

The NFV Executive Forum facilitates networking and discussion amongst executives and experts from leading communication service providers and VMware’s successful NFV vendor ecosystem.

NFV Exec Forum-VMworld 2016

Continue reading

NFV Event: Virtualise That! How Telecoms Operators are Moving Beyond Proof of Concept

Are you a communications service provider navigating the waters of Network Functions TT_logoVirtualization (NFV)? Have you read media reports that imply the virtualization of telecoms network services has stalled? That Proof of Concepts (PoC) are not progressing to live deployments. Why are so many organizations apparently failing to move to production deployments?

Total Telecom is teaming up with Current Analysis and VMware for a one-day event in Singapore dedicated to communication service provider strategists to dive deep into what it takes to move network infrastructures to open, virtualized production environments.

Register Now for Virtualize That!

Through expert presentations and interactive sessions delegates will learn how operators have analyzed the NFV business case, identified key operating technologies and organized their teams to monetize new services on virtualized service platforms.

Discussion Topics Include:

  • Table 1: The impact of technology choices: Understanding the costs, risk and benefits of NFV
  • Table 2: Defining the Operating toolkit – what tools are needed for commercial deployments?
  • Table 3: Organising for Success – how to restructure operations for a cloud-based telco services.

WHEN: Wednesday, 1 June 2016 from 10:00 to 16:00 (SGT)

WHERE: Singapore Marriott Tang Plaza Hotel – 320 Orchard Road , Singapore, 238865, Singapore

The event is free of charge and available to qualified representatives of communication service provider organizations only.

Register Here.

VMware Showcases NFV in Action at Mobile World Congress 2016

VMware’s virtualization platform is proven in production deployments in more than 45 logo-mwc151Communications Service Provider networks globally. With more than 40 VNFs running on VMware infrastructure from more than 30 VNF ecosystem partners VMware is helping customers transform their businesses across a range of dedicated NFV activities with selected partners.

At Mobile World Congress 2016, in the VMware Stand, Hall 3 Stand 3K10 we will offer daily sessions in the NFV Track at the VMware booth for attendees to learn more about our solutions and our partners.

Monday Feb 22nd 12:00 – 13:00
Understanding the Business Imperatives for NFV
David Wright, VP Operations, Telco NFV Group, VMware
Driving business value from NFV requires more than simply virtualizing network functions: It requires integration of services across multiple domains and multiple vendors that drives operational efficiency and monetizes new services quickly. Learn how Communication Service Providers (CSPs) can ensure positive business outcomes from virtualization of the mobile network infrastructure – and beyond.

Tuesday Feb 23rd 12:00 – 13:00
Making the Right NFV Technology Choices
Philip Kippen, Director Solutions Architect, Telco NFV Group, VMware
Business imperatives of operational efficiency and rapid time to market drive technical requirements. Learn how virtualization can be applied to mobile network infrastructures and the key technical attributes that enable success. See in a LIVE demo of the creation of vEPC and vIMS  to deliver a Voice over LTE (VoLTE) service.

Wednesday Feb 24th 12:00 –13:00
Managing Operational Transformation for NFV
Nigel Stephenson, Global Marketing, Telco NFV Group, VMware
Having built your telco cloud – what next? How Communication Service Providers (CSPs) transform operations will determine the ultimate success of Network Function Virtualization projects. Find out what VMware has learnt from over fifteen years of IT transformation that can give the CSP a head start.

All sessions will be followed by lunch-time refreshments where you will be able to discuss your NFV requirements with NFV experts from VMware and our partners.

MWC Floor Plan

VMware also continues to build out a powerful ecosystem of NFV partners, that together will help communications service providers accelerate adoption of NFV through proven interoperability, simplified operations and ongoing service assurance. Strategic thinkers, architects, operations leaders and business leaders alike can learn from real-world NFV experiences of VMware and our ecosystem partners at Mobile World Congress 2016.

Demonstrations include:

VMware vCloud NFV NFV Pavilion Pod 1 Overview of the vCloud NFV platform and how VMware provides a multi-­‐ vendor/multi-­‐domain platform that delivers on the NFV business case through production-­‐proven technology that minimizes operator risk and time to market for new services.
CENX/MitelNFV Pavilion Pod 2 CENX’s Exanova Service Intelligence assures VoWiFi and VoLTE connectivity QoE, in real time, across a mobile network, powered by Mitel’s vEPC virtual functions -­‐ ePDG and P-­‐GW, and managed by VMware Integrated OpenStack (VIO).  Comprehensive performance monitoring and visualization across all path segments enables operators to diagnose faults immediately and take focused action to maintain high QoE.
EricssonNFV Pavilion Pod 3 The Ericsson Hyperscale Datacenter System 8000 platform integrated with VMware’s production-­‐proven NFV infrastructure vSphere®, vRealize®, NSX®, Virtual SAN™ is designed to rapidly deliver new services including virtual network functions and ICT applications for hybrid Telco, IT and Commercial Cloud. Differentiated with Ericsson software defined hardware based on Intel Rack Scale architecture and VMware virtualization to transform your cloud with dramatically improved agility, analytics, automation, manageability, scalability, and reduced TCO.
Ciena/VersaNFV Pavilion Pod 4 Ciena’s Blue Planet service orchestration platform will automate the provisioning and life-­‐cycle  management of a vCPE and SD-­‐WAN  service  from Versa Networks running on a VMware platform. The demo will highlight delivering capabilities such as routing, QoS, IPsec VPN, CGNAT and SD-­‐WAN as well as a wide range of security features in a multi-­‐tenancy carrier-­‐grade  environment with on-­‐demand  scale out  properties.
Dell/AffirmedNFV Pavilion Pod 5 Combining Dell’s PowerEdge servers with the brilliance of Affirmed Networks vEPC on Vmware’s vCloud NFV platform this demo proves just how simple it is to deploy, monitor and manage a VNF with these three powerhouses integrated. This demo highlights Dell integration with vRealize Operations Management to show the robust monitoring capabilities and vCloud Director for Service Providers for rapid deployment of the vEPC VNF.
Gigaspaces/Metaswitch NFV Pavilion Pod 6 Gigaspaces Cloudify brings a new dimension to service automation in a vCloud NFV environment. Through integration with vCloud Director watch how Cloudify streamlines provisioning and management of the Metaswitch’s Clearwater IMS, and delivers the functionality and ease of use that customers demand.

We hope to see you there.


Brocade and Versa Networks certify for vCloud NFV

Having  announced the VMware Ready certification program for NFV at last month’s VMworld event in Barcelona, two of VMware’s leading technology partners have completed the formal certificatVMWReady-LGO-NTWK-FNCTNS-VIRTZTN-Metalion process to become VMware Ready for NFV.

The VMware Ready program designates VMware’s highest level of endorsement for products and solutions created by our established partners. The accreditation builds customer confidence and accelerates partner opportunity.

Brocade and Versa Networks have already shown leadership in delivering real-world NFV solutions to Communication Service Providers (CSPs) running on the VMware virtualization platform. The VMware Ready certification provides CSPs with the confidence that NFV solutions will deploy, run, and interoperate with vCloud NFV.

Brocade vEPC is a software-based fully virtualized Evolved Packet Core (EPC) designed from the ground-up for a virtualized environment that consists of independent slices of control, data, and session management. This design is free of the redundant functionality and inter-node interfaces that increase costs and reduce performance in hardware-based packet cores. With Brocade vEPC you have any-size network with linear performance scaling on Intel x86 servers for cost-effective business growth.

Versa Networks FlexVNF software provides a broad set of carrier-grade virtualized network and security functions (VNF) that can scale out/in on-demand, and provide full multi-tenancy. Versa VNFs include a full set of networking capabilities such as routing, DHCP, QoS, CGNAT, IPsec VPN, and SD-WAN, as well as a wide range of basic and advanced security functions like stateful/next generation firewall, URL filtering, IPS/AV, and malware protection.

It’s exciting to have Brocade and Versa Networks join the VMware Ready for NFV program and I’m looking forward to more partners certifying in the near future.

You can find out more at:

Brocade vEPC VMware Ready for NFV

Versa Networks FlexVNF VMware Ready for NFV

VMware vCloud NFV

VMware Solution Exchange


Nigel Stephenson

VMware Telco NFV Group

NFV @ VMworld – Meet the Partners

There’s excitement in the air with only a week to go to VMworld 2015 Europe in Barcelona and the first ever NFV Partner Pavilion!

With the VMware virtualization platform now proven in production in over 45 NFV-based service deployments servicing more than 30 million subscribers, we are excited to share that experience by hosting some of the industry’s leading players to showcase real-world NFV solutions.

Partner solutions will be on display in the Solution Exchange hall on the NFV Partner Pavilion (Booths NFV 3060 – 3069). But if you can’t wait another week, you can check out some of the solutions on our NFV Partner Pavilion website.

We look forward to welcoming Affirmed Networks, Amdocs, Brocade, DELL, EMC, GigaspacesMetaswitch Nokia and Versa Networks to VMworld in Barcelona!

The NFV Partner Pavilion at the Solution Exchange will be open during the following times:

  • Tuesday 13th Oct 11:00 – 19:30
  • Wednesday 14th Oct: 11:00 – 19:00
  • Thursday 15th Oct:  10:30 – 16:00

For more information see:

VMworld NFV Partner Pavilion
VMworld Europe 2015
VMware vCloud NFV


Network Functions Virtualization to Be Featured at VMworld 2015 Europe

vmworld2015Since announcing the creation of our new Telco NFV Group within VMware earlier this year, and delivering real-world proof points that customers are adopting VMware’s NFV platform to enable their Telco-Cloud transformation, we have certainly been accelerating our network functions virtualization momentum. At VMworld 2015 Europe in Barcelona in a few weeks, we will offer further proof that VMware stands to be a major player in the NFV market.

We debuted our VMware vCloud for NFV platform at Mobile World Congress this year. Subsequently, we announced how we are working with leading customers such as Vodafone Germany, Ooredoo and IIJ to enable them to deliver NFV services.  Our unique value comes from the fact that we can get customers running with NFV today, while giving them an open, standards-based platform that can evolve to meet their changing requirements in the future.

Our unique value proposition comes from our vast ecosystem of partners, and our ability to deliver a single NFV platform that supports a multi-vendor NFV strategy. At VMworld Barcelona, we will feature this ecosystem in the first-ever VMworld NFV Solutions Exchange.

With a focus on sharing experiences from real world NFV deployments, the NFV Partner Pavilion will include a range of NFV demonstrations for mobile and fixed line operators. Solution areas span hardware platforms, mobile core and virtual CPE Virtual Network Function (VNFs), service orchestration, OSS and BSS. Partners include Amdocs, Affirmed Networks, Brocade, DELL, EMC, Metaswitch, Nokia and Versa Networks. I’ll be providing more detail on the partner demos in a subsequent blog.

The NFV Partner Pavilion at the Solution Exchange will be open during the following times:

  • Tuesday 13th Oct 11:00 – 19:30
  • Wednesday 14th Oct: 11:00 – 19:00
  • Thursday 15th Oct: 10:30 – 16:00

For more information see:
VMworld NFV Partner Pavilion
VMworld Europe 2015
VMware vCloud for NFV

Don’t deploy NFV as ‘New Legacy’

With many predicting 2017 as the year in which telco service cost per bit will exceed achievable revenues, operators must act quickly and effectively if they are to avoid large parts of their revenue streams becoming non-profitable.

With this in mind, Network Functions Virtualization (NFV)) has captured the imagination of the telecommunications industry. According to iHS (formally Infonetics), 35% of Communications Service Providers (CSPs) are planning to deploy NFV in 2015. Will they all succeed? I suspect not.

The fact is, there are many ways in which NFV could simply perpetuate the status quo. In deploying NFV CSPs may be deploying a ‘new legacy’. That is, creating software-defined silos where previously there were hardware-defined silos. These software silos can be just as inflexible, just as expensive and just as locked-in as their physical counterparts. Continue reading