Business employees and consumers alike are leveraging new devices and applications to go about their work and personal lives very differently than even a few years ago. Not only are we in a digital, app- and mobile-centric world, but our expectations for services and information are growing by day. This of course puts incredible strain on the network operators and service providers who are tasked with delivering on our expectations. Natasha Tamaskar, Vice President, Global Marketing and Sales Strategy, Radisys, took time ahead of her participation at ITEXPO 2019 to explain some of the challenges service providers are facing and how innovative technology is enabling them to deliver.
Please tell us a bit about the latest news at your company
Radisys is a global leader in open telecom solutions, enabling communications service providers to drive disruption with new open architecture business models and meet the demands of the 4th Industrial Revolution. The company was acquired by Reliance Industries (RIL) in December 2018.
We are leading the way with our 5G solutions, being first-to-market with our 3GPP compliant 5G Software Suite focusing on Next Generation NodeB (gNB), 5G User Equipment (UE) and 5G Core Network (CN). We recently collaborated with NI on delivering an end-to-end 5G platform that enables mobile operators and chipset manufacturers to validate and begin monetizing their 5G solutions now.
Radisys has also introduced the industry’s first decomposed media server platform to allow control and media elements to scale independently, allowing application developers and service providers to support tens of millions of subscribers through application servers that leverage a large pool of media server resources to deliver services such as conferencing, speech recognition, and real-time video. By delivering a decomposed architecture that allows for rapid scaling in the cloud, Radisys is enabling service providers to lower costs with flexible deployment options, accelerate innovation, and reduce complexity in their networks.
What pains are you taking away for customers?
There are a number of ways that Radisys is supporting our service provider customers, but one of the biggest benefits that Radisys’ open telecom solutions brings to service providers is breaking vendor lock-in. We enable service providers to leverage open reference architectures and build their networks with a variety of open and commercial software and hardware components from a multi-vendor ecosystem, and thereby reduce their reliance on expensive proprietary solutions. We also work with our partners in our Open Business Accelerator to build joint solutions that leverage Radisys’ software and services integrated with our partners’ solutions to deliver end-to-end solutions that enable them to accelerate time-to-market.
How is cloud acceptance changing how your company or customers operate?
Service providers want to achieve the same benefits that cloud technology has brought to enterprise, namely economies of scale, cloud agility, and reduced CapEx and OpEx. As such, they are migrating their networks from traditional telecom architectures to NFV and cloud-based architectures. NFV, SDN and the telecom cloud are core components of the software-centric, programmable networks of the future. We support our service provider customers’ NFVi infrastructure requirements with virtualized and decomposed 4G/5G RAN and media intelligence solutions.
What are the most important recent communications technology innovations in your industry?
5G is changing not only our industry, but will change the world in how we connect, how we communicate, and how we work. The combination of its capacity, throughput and low latency will enable the delivery of new applications that we can only dream of today. 5G networks will be open and disaggregated, with geographically dispersed data centers at the edge. We’re proud to be first-to-market with 5G software solutions and open telecom solutions that will enable this new era of connectivity.
How is open-source changing technology and how your company does business?
We have embraced open and its ability to disrupt the traditional telecom industry. Radisys is transforming itself into an open-centric software and services company that enables service providers to disrupt with open architecture business models. This move allows service providers to break vendor lock-in and move away from traditional OEMs with proprietary solutions to smaller, more agile companies – such as Radisys – that are invested in supplying software and hardware for open reference architectures.
Radisys is also deeply involved in the open ecosystem groups driving these efforts, such as the Open Networking Foundation (ONF), the Telecom Infra Project (TIP), and the ORAN Alliance. Working together with like-minded vendors and the service provider community, we’ve taken a leadership role in delivering open telecom solutions to the industry.
What implications does AI have for your business and your customers?
Artificial Intelligence is one of the key drivers for mobile operators’ 5G network deployments as AI applications will require 5G’s network capacity, throughput and low latency. GSMA refers to the triple combination of 5G, IoT and AI as “intelligent connectivity.”
Radisys is enabling AI applications with our 5G and edge computing solutions. At multiple events around the world, we’ve demonstrated a surveillance application at the network edge with media analytics and AI inference for facial recognition. The solution enables enables service providers to optimize and monetize media at the edge, while achieving backhaul savings for always-on video surveillance. It also delivers ultra-low latency that 5G networks require.
What new opportunities does IoT bring your company?
We enable global service providers to enhance their IoT capabilities. Service providers can leveraging our software-centric disaggregated platform solutions to build their next-gen networks for the 4th Industrial Revolution and IoT connected everything.
What is the greatest opportunity facing your industry?
We live in an increasingly connected world, and communications service providers have the opportunity to be at the forefront of new service innovation and capitalize on the demand for “connected everything.” But, in order to keep up with the demands of the 4th Industrial Revolution and 50+ billion connected devices, they will need to transform how they build their next-generation networks. They will need to leverage a combination of open and commercial software and hardware components, from a multi-vendor ecosystem, in order to deliver the performance and capacity that will be demanded of their networks, while being able to reduce costs and time-to-market. This network transformation opens up new opportunities to the vendor community, enabling smaller, more nimble players to compete.
What is the greatest challenge?
Communications service providers (CSPs) have traditionally relied on a single source vendor to supply their network infrastructure, which has resulted in massive CapEx and OpEx, while locking CSPs into a single supplier and locking out competition. By leveraging open architectures and open components, CSPs can break vendor lock-in and reduce costs. However, they may not have the in-house knowledge to put all of the components from multiple vendors together.
Radisys’ ServiceEngine offering – comprised of expertise in systems integration, open compute transformation, custom development, support services, and rapid deployment – provides end-to-end infrastructure built with open and proprietary components. We enable CSPs to break vendor lock-in and reduce costs, without needing to hire integration expertise in-house.
What do you hope to achieve at the event?
I’m looking forward to participating at ITEXPO to meet in person with service providers and the vendor community that are facing the challenges that the 4th Industrial Revolution brings – how to go from connecting people and mobile devices, to connecting everything! During this year’s ITEXPO, I hope to make new connections and gain new insights from my peers to help fuel my work when I return to Boston.
Why should your session be on the list of must-attend sessions at this year’s conference?
I’ll be speaking on the panel “Communications Services for the App Economy” along with panelists from Red Hat and Cloudonix to address how communications providers must innovate and reinvent their service capabilities. Specifically, I’ll address how making the network more open, virtualized and disaggregated will enable service providers to accelerate the introduction of new services while reducing costs and breaking vendor lock-in. I encourage you to join us to learn how a transformed network will transform our world in the App economy. The panel session will take place on January 30, starting at 2pm.
Please make an interesting prediction about tech in 2019?
At Radisys, we believe that Open RAN will gain significant ground in 2019. Recently, Heavy Reading conducted a survey of global mobile operators to better understand their plans for Open RAN transformation. Approximately 70% of all survey respondents said that they consider Open RAN to be strategic to their companies’ overall network transformation. In 2019, we anticipate that Open RAN adoption will accelerate as large-scale deployments align with mobile operators’ efforts around 5G.
In addition to participating on the panel, “Communications Services for the App Economy,” at 2:00pm, Wednesday, January 30, Natasha will expand further on her expectations for Open RAN in 2019, during her session, “How Open RAN is Driving Network Transformation,” at 9:30am Wednesday, January 30, 2019. This is a great opportunity for service providers and network operators of all kinds to hear from one of the prominent thought leaders in the space. If you haven’t already, register for ITEXPO today and put her sessions on your calendar.
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