Adtran and TIM sign memorandum of understanding

Italy’s leading telco and ICT group TIM announced it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Adtran to review the company’s NFV and SDN technologies and platforms for network automation in the access network segment.

NFV and SDN are two complementary approaches to the digital transformation of networks. The former involves decoupling software from hardware in order to run network functions on virtual machines, whereas the latter involves centrally controlling network behavior with application program interfaces (APIs). According to a 2017 report by Technology Business Research, investment in NFV and SDN is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 94.3% until 2022 to over $168 billion.

Under the agreement, TIM will evaluate Adtran’s SD-Access solution, Mosaic, as part of its analysis of the benefits and agility of SDN architectures pertaining to its ultra-broadband fiber access network. According to the company, the solution helps operators fasten their journey to SD-Access, providing them with the architecture necessary to compete with developing OTT providers operating at web-scale.

It is hoped the agreement will help TIM reach the European Commission’s’ Gigabit Society’s goals. Commenting on the memorandum, Ronan Kelly, CTO of EMEA and APAC at Adtran, said in a prepared statement: “Operators in highly competitive environments are challenged to extend Gigabit services due to the time and cost that can be associated with traditional optical access technologies. With SDN and NFV innovation, operators like TIM can significantly accelerate Gigabit Society goals by launching flexible Gigabit services that dramatically reduce subscriber disruption and time-to-market.”

The Mosaic Cloud Platform also allows providers to install, commission, and determine desired services and verify provisioned ones. The company said the testing by TIM will demonstrate the advantages of the open platform access model, which allows operators to respond to customer demands. Adtran said the integrated platform provides the flexibility to adapt to shifting infrastructure needs across multiple mediums.

“TIM is actively working on the evolution of the access network towards an open, easily upgradeable and programmable asset with greater operational efficiency, lower TCO and improved service automation,” said Andrea Calvi, head of network innovation in TIM. “These are the features we plan to assess on ADTRAN’s solution as part of the ongoing collaboration on our way to achieving the European Commission’s Gigabit Society goals.”

TIM also recently announced it plans to become a pure digital player and not a telecoms operator. According to TIM CEO Amos Genish, the company will discuss its new business strategy in either February or March 2018.

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