The Open Networking Foundation and ON.Lab are still finalizing their merger, but they aren't waiting for the final papers to get signed. Today the ONF is launching the Open Innovation Pipeline, charting what it bills as the next phase of SDN and NFV.
The ONF is taking the collaborative process that ON.Lab used to put together CORD and ONOS and putting it to use in a broader context. Basically, they want to maximize the leverage of network device disaggregation, open source, and software-defined standards and battle the trend toward proprietary solutions.
That's a lot of jargon of course, but the ONF continues to have some heavy hitters as backing. AT&T, Google, NTT, SK Telecom, and Verizon are all backing the idea. Both SDN and NFV are already non-optional in the networking world, the only question is what form they take and how quickly they get deployed on a network by network basis.