Service providers have a newly upgraded platform to serve subscribers with today, as ConteXtream has updated its SDN fabric. They have launched version 4.0, which supports OpenFlow's OpenStack and is based on the OpenDaylight SDN controller.
What that means for ConteXtream is their entry into the world of NFV and third party virtualized network functions (VNFs). They hope to empower service providers and developers to easily design and create personalized products and services that can address specific markets and opportunities with speed and, yes, that ever-present word of the times, agility.
How far are we from really seeing the true benefits of SDN and NFV? As with most new technologies, the initial deployments by service providers will be about doing things that are already done more efficiently. Costs will be saved, kinks will be worked out, and people will get comfortable with them as the core of their business. The rolling out of truly new products and services tends to come later. But the platforms to do that on (like that of ConteXtream) are definitely starting to appear, and that is of course a prerequisite. Now all we have to do is wait for those killer apps to get developed.
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