Today at VMworld 2019 Europe, VMware, Inc. unveiled a technology preview of Project Maestro, a telco cloud orchestrator built to help communications service providers (CSPs) accelerate the time to market of modern network functions and services across clouds, from core to edge, and from private to public clouds. In addition, the company shared that Millicom, a global provider of cable and mobile services, has selected VMware to build a Telco Cloud foundation to help enable its network and IT transformation. Finally, the company shared details of its new Virtual Network Functions (VNF) Self Certification program, which builds on its existing VMware Ready for NFV certification program.
“As the telco industry transitions to 5G and edge computing, CSPs are readying their infrastructure to be able to deliver next generation apps and services to both consumers and enterprises with agility and scalability. This requires a Telco Cloud architecture that unifies their network and IT environments and connects them to private enterprise clouds, edge clouds, and public clouds,” said Shekar Ayyar, executive vice president and general manager, Telco and Edge Cloud, VMware. “To make sense of it all, a new approach to orchestration is required – one that is cloud-first and abstracts the multi-cloud complexity. This is precisely what we are aiming to address with Project Maestro.”
Introducing Project Maestro
Project Maestro will deliver a unified approach to modeling, onboarding, orchestrating, and managing virtual network functions and services. With this cloud-first orchestration solution, CSPs will be able to build and automate network services that span across a wider variety of network function formats, enabling interoperability and optimizing their operations across every layer of the NFV and Telco Cloud architecture. The telco cloud orchestrator will be able to deliver operational efficiency at scale to ultimately help CSPs accelerate time to market of new services, mitigate the cost of managing ever more complex networks, and improve customer experiences.
“The modernization of telco networks is pushing orchestration challenges exponentially as CSPs must now manage network functions in various formats, from multiple-vendors, in a highly distributed multi-cloud network,” commented Caroline Chappell, lead analyst, Digital Infrastructure Strategies, Analysys Mason. “CSPs are looking for modern orchestration tools to tackle this complexity by automating the lifecycle management of network services and the underlying multi-vendor network functions across any cloud.”
Now in technology preview, Project Maestro will help CSPs:
Accelerate time to revenue: Accelerate service time-to-revenue with a simplified vendor-neutral and standard-compliant approach for designing and onboarding VNFs/CNFs or network services.
Automate operations with multi-cloud agility: Embed true cloud agility to operationalize processes with full lifecycle management automation capabilities. CSPs will be able to define and apply policies using a comprehensive decision engine to automate day zero through more complex day two operations.
Enhance customer experiences: Deliver a new level of experiences with adaptable and resilient services. The solution will combine real-time decisioning capabilities with holistic Telco Cloud awareness for optimal close-loop actions that help deliver improved service quality. Furthermore, the telco cloud orchestrator will automate the distribution of network functions and service workloads across data centers and availability zones for optimal service quality and better resiliency.
Transform to cloud-native networks: Evolve network architectures from OpenStack infrastructure to containers-based applications with seamless on-boarding and orchestration of VMs and container-based infrastructure for a future-proof service delivery foundation. Distribute workloads from the core to the edge and from private to public clouds for modern, unified network orchestration.
Streamline orchestration: The telco cloud orchestrator will streamline the CSP orchestration journey with native integration into VMware cloud technologies and Virtualized Infrastructure Managers (VIMs) for operational consistency and ease of deployment while maximizing infrastructure resource utilization.
Simplify interoperability: Built as a modular and model-driven solution, the Generic VNF Manager (G-VNFM) and NFV Orchestrator (NFVO) components of the solution will be able to integrate any SOL-compliant ETSI MANO architecture. Project Maestro will allow standards-based integration with OSS/BSS systems and Service Orchestrators through ETSI- and TMF-compliant interfaces. VMware will further enhance interoperability by expanding partner VNF certifications to cover infrastructure and orchestration through the VMware Ready for NFV program.
Millicom Selects VMware To Build Its Telco Cloud to Drive Digital Transformation
Millicom is a leading provider of cable and mobile services dedicated to emerging markets in Latin America and Africa. Through its various operating subsidiaries, Millicom provides mobile services to approximately 50 million customers, with a cable footprint of more than 11 million homes passed. As the company looked to differentiate themselves and improve how services and applications are delivered to consumer and enterprise customers, they determined their digital transformation required a multi-cloud approach. Enter the VMware Telco Cloud.
“As we continued to add new services and expand our geographic footprint in the past year, we were running up against an increasingly complex environment that consisted of siloed platforms for IT, core and cloud. We needed to find a way to bring these platforms together with a cloud-first approach,” said Xavier Rocoplan, CTIO, Millicom. “We are excited to begin working with VMware to develop a Telco Cloud that will provide a consistent platform for service and application delivery for all of our operating subsidiaries. We will use this opportunity to rationalize our IT infrastructure under the same ecosystem and finally get to our unified Tigo Cloud, comprised of our own as well as public cloud accesses. This bold move, along with our B2B offerings with VMware, will put us in a unique, cost efficient and fast-moving position for our customers with unmatched capabilities.”
VMware will partner with Millicom to build a Telco Cloud that is software-defined, automated, virtualized infrastructure built on NFV for core network workloads, and converged with IT workloads through a common, unified architecture. With vCloud NFV, Millicom will modernize its infrastructure to become 5G-ready and accelerate time to market for new services.
VMware Launches VNF Self Certification Program
VMware Ready for NFV is a comprehensive, award-winning certification program that enables interoperability and operational readiness between third party-developed VNFs and the ETSI-compliant VMware vCloud NFV platform. The program helps enable CSPs to rapidly onboard and deploy multi-vendor VNFs with the VMware vCloud NFV platform.
VMware today announced an extension of its VMware Ready for NFV certification program with a VNF Self Certification program. This program extension allows VNF vendors to accelerate their testing and application readiness on the vCloud NFV platform by running an automated certification testing in the cloud. This gives CSPs greater speed and flexibility to upgrade their vCloud NFV infrastructure with a validated and certified VNF for that specific release.
Through the program extension, VMware is further enhancing interoperability and simplicity for virtualized network deployments, allowing carriers to count on a continuous stream of validated VNFs on VMware vCloud NFV infrastructure. To sustain and monitor the high quality of the program, VMware will maintain control of the test plan and results review.