Tagged: #MWC14

My #MWC14 week in pictures

“Mobile World Congress set additional records, with more than 1,800 exhibiting companies showcasing cutting-edge products and services across 98,000 net square meters of exhibition and hospitality space. More than 3,800 international media and industry analysts attended the event to report on the many significant industry announcements made at the Congress. Preliminary independent economic analysis indicates that the 2014 Mobile World Congress will have contributed more than €356 million and 7,220 part-time jobs to the local economy.”

“The four-day conference and exhibition attracted executives from the world’s largest and most influential mobile operators, software companies, equipment providers, Internet companies and companies from industry sectors such as automotive, finance and healthcare, as well as government delegations from across the globe. Over 50 per cent of this year’s Mobile World Congress attendees hold C-level positions, including more than 4,500 CEOs and 18 per cent of attendees for the 2014 show were women.”

GSMA Mobile World Congress 2014 shatters previous records.

Day 4


This year’s Mobile World Congress registered in excess of 85,000 attendees, that is 18% over last year’s record attendance.

At Alcatel-Lucent’s booth our NFV (Network Functions Virtualization) teams handled more than 300 private demonstrations, all by invitation only and most scheduled in advance to MWC. That not only signals strong interest in cloud computing in the telecommunications industry, but also our company’s leading edge in the carrier cloud space.

We have already crossed the chasm between researching the art of what’s possible and reality. This is my fourth consecutive year discussing cloud computing technologies for network operators at MWC. Our head start has equipped us with know-how and compelling solutions, which our customers are deploying today.

This was a very successful MWC for our teams, which called for a celebration after MWC’s closed its doors to the public (right picture).

Day 3


Earlier in the day I visited Catalonia’s booth which promoted a number local start-ups. In the afternoon I joined SCTC (Society of Communications Technology Consultants) for the “Consultants Day” in Barcelona, and off site event sponsored by Banc de Sabadell and Argelich Networks.

This conference’s presentations involved consultants and service providers, as well as a thought provoking panel discussion on cloud computing. Among many other topics of interest, I was glad to hear Orange’s J. Nabet stating the need for SLA (Service Level Agreements) engineered to take care of both cloud and network services, a key differentiator for network operators.

I would like to thank the organizers and, specially, A. Argelich for inviting me to join the conference’s speakers to continue discussions over dinner.

Day 2


Another intensive day at Alcatel-Lucent’s booth packed with back to back meetings with service providers, press, analysts and public officials at our demo station.

Our discussions on the Cloud Communications Platform ranged from deep dives on what it takes to implement and operationalize NFV today to some discussions on cloud fundamentals in the context of telecommunication networks. This signals the fact that the industry is no longer wondering whether to adopt cloud technologies. Our customers are now zeroing in on what it takes to make things happen and what specific use cases make the most sense to start with.

Later that evening, Alcatel-Lucent’s CloudBand held the “NFV Mixer” co-sponsored by Intel, a reception for ecosystem partners in the hospitality section of our booth.

Day 1


Opening day. Alcatel-Lucent’s MWC14 slogan is “Mobile Meets Cloud.”

Our booth was designed to host a number of demonstration stations. Two of them where exclusively dedicated to NFV: vIMS (virtual IP Multimedia Subsystem) and vEPC (virtual Evolved Packet Core) both supported by CloudBand’s Management System and Cloud Node.

Telefonica’s and China Mobile’s own press releases featured Alcatel-Lucent NFV solutions. Our customers also followed up on our collaboration with Intel, which was announced just the day before. This program aims to accelerate the development of key cloud technologies, such as data plane acceleration.

That night I attended TechCrunch’s & BoB gathering at El Palauet, an Art Nouveau mansion built in the early 1900s. I would like to thank Deustche Telekom’s J. Noronha and Concise Software’s L. Hostynski for sharing interesting insights on emerging technologies and markets. This event focused on connecting influencers from around the world with innovators in town for MWC.

Day 0


Our team met with M. Combes, Alcatel-Lucent’s CEO, the day before MWC’s official opening.

The Cloud Communications Platform experience involved two large touch screens portraying a live demonstration (left screen) and interactive infographics (right screen). While focusing on value and DevOps (Development & Operations) we also took care of exemplifying end user benefits, these were clearly illustrated with tablets and real time communications applications.

That night I also enjoyed a good conversation with C. Chappelle at Heavy Reading’s gathering. She is a well respected industry analyst whose research focuses on the service provider’s adoption of cloud computing technologies. I would like to thank Heavy Reading for their kind invitation and S. Reedy for letting me know about Chicago’s “Big Telecom” event, scheduled for June of this year.

Day –1


MWC remained under construction and we all were asked to comply with safety rules. We conducted demo dry-runs supported by M. Gerdisch and S. Furge’s of Alcatel-Lucent’s CIC (Cloud Innovation Center).

Our Cloud Communications Platform was ready for prime time, a solution featuring vIMS and the NFV Platform with SDN (Software Defined Networking). Given its sophistication, we could have deployed three standalone demonstrations instead. In hindsight, showing how these technologies come together to deliver greater value for our customers was the right approach.

Day –2


Landed in Barcelona and partnered with D. Johnson, IMS Virtualization & Cloud Enablement Head, at Alcatel-Lucent’s booth, which was under construction. Our objective that day was to sync on the latest developments and to discuss messaging updates for MWC.

In my first evening in Barcelona I was fortunate to make it for my high school’s 50th Anniversary celebration. I couldn’t be happier about reconnecting with faculty and joining distinguished guests such as I. Rigau, Minister of Education with the Government of Catalonia and J.Jané, Vice President, Parliament of Spain. I would like to thank Principle Fr. M. Muñoz for his kind invitation.

Click below to access my photo set on Flickr.


Greetings from London.

#MWC2014 – NFV’s defining moment

“Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) aims to transform the way that network operators architect networks by evolving standard IT virtualization technologies to consolidate many network equipment types onto industry standard high volume servers, switches and storage, which could be located in a a variety of NFVI-PoPs including datacenters, network nodes and in end user premises.”

  • “Rapid service innovation through software-based deployment and operationalization of network functions and end to end services.”
  • “Improved operational efficiencies resulting from common automation and operating procedures.
  • Reduced power usage achieved by migrating workloads and powering down unused hardware.”
  • “Standardized and open interfaces between network functions and their management entities so that such decoupled network elements can be provided by different players.”
  • “Greater flexibility in assigning VNFs to hardware.”
  • “Improved capital efficiencies compared with dedicated hardware implementation.”

Network Functions Virtualization (NFV): Use Cases by ETSI GS NFV.


Mobile World Congress, VIP Networking Lounge. La Fira Gran Via. Barcelona.

#MWC 2014 Day –3

Barcelona’s Mobile World Congress is under construction and will formally open this coming Monday, February 24. We’ll be wearing hard hats for the next couple of days. In the meantime, our team is installing the live Cloud Communications Platform demo, which Dan Johnson and myself will be discussing with network operators, analysts, media and public officials. This demonstration showcases IMS (IP Multimedia Subsystem) under the VNF (Virtual Network Functions) model.

NFV is a hot topic with many suppliers joining the fray in the eleventh hour. 2014 is a defining year given the fact that we are readying solutions that shift the conversation from the art of the possible to what’s actually tested and available for deployment. Our team’s journey got a head start, which has become a source of competitive advantages.

Mobile World Congress 2011

#MWC11 is where Cindy Bergevin and I first talked about cloud computing in the context of LTE. That early demonstration focused on illustrating a nascent mobile cloud computing environment where end users would benefit from what mobile broadband had to offer.

As an example, we easily tapped into the live LTE network that Alcatel-Lucent made available on the show floor. We then demonstrated a use case where field engineers equipped with rogued tablets were able to work with sophisticated 3D CAD (Computer Aided Design) running in the cloud. This also included communicating over video conferencing with other members of an engineering team (whether they were on the road or based at other locations) as well as virtual desktop infrastructure.

Note that we purposely had tablets that did not have the processing power to run a 3D CAD system requiring dedicated workstation. That statement alone made the cloud’s and mobile broadband’s relevance quite obvious by getting us to access anything we needed, anytime and from anywhere.

While other vendors were just issuing nicely written press releases, we were engaging our customers to experience this new reality first hand right there at #MWC11. This was one of the most visible outcomes of an in-house consulting project that I started a year earlier for ALU’s Wireless Unit President, which I had titled “why ubiquitous net computing is set to become LTE’s killer app.” As far as the choice of words, there was a need for signaling that “net computing” wasn’t just about adopting “cloud computing,” but about a new breed of integrated technologies where the network is the platform and, most importantly, enabling engaging and productive experiences at end user and operational levels.

Mobile World Congress 2012

#MWC12 was very rewarding too. We unveiled CloudBand’s Management System, which pioneered a concept now known as MANO, Management & Orchestration, under ETSI NFV.

Lazar Obradovic, Asaf Peled and I kept extremely busy with non-stop demonstrations throughout the show. We had designed a schedule with our morning and afternoon shifts, which was rendered useless as the three of us ended up engaged in parallel customer discussions most of the time. CloudBand 1.0 became commercially available just a couple of months later and proof of concept projects with global leading service providers were kicked off soon after. DT’s and NTT’s to begin with.

A fair amount of those early MWC discussions focused on introducing cloud computing fundamentals such why cloud economics based on (1) the software defined aspect of virtualization (control and data plane decoupling), (2) shared assets and resource pools for application multi-tenancy, (3) data center environments equipped with COTS (Commercial off the Shelf) hardware and (4) automated on demand delivery systems (5) bridging cloud and network systems were game changers in the telecommunications industry.

This was coupled with Bell Lab’s “Networked Cloud’ demonstration on the need for addressing distributed architectures. Generally speaking, cloud computing delivers opportunities to consolidate infrastructure and to centralize management, optimizing for cost (CAPEX and OPEX) in the process. Optimizing for performance involves distributed systems with loads placed geographically closer to end users’ locations, as well as for any other reasons such as regulations and intelligent capacity management.

CloudBand’s launch was comprised of two key modular elements, an open and automated management system and also fully automated cloud nodes, a cloud-in-a-box solution. Just to share a quick metric reflecting interest levels in the industry, by year end I had conducted in excess of 300 live demonstrations and my contribution to the overall conversation was just a fraction of what our team delivered.

Mobile World Congress 2013

#MWC2013 gave us another good opportunity to take things further by delivering a first public demonstration: an early NFV Proof of Concept system that helped better understand how something as sophisticated and mission critical as IMS was very well suited for a carrier’s own cloud environment. And we did that meeting service levels with performance and control requirements required in the telecommunications industry.

We presented CloudBand’s cPaaS (“carrier” Platform as a Service) engineered to meet the needs of network operators with streamlined workflows and lifecycle automation. That starts with ease of application onboarding and service provisioning and deployment. Then including scalability (on demand growth and degrowth), zero touch upgrades, self-healing and virtual machine termination. A compelling demonstration where cloud speed and operational agility were clearly visualized. We run it on a nimble CloudBand Cloud Node and #MWC2013 became another instant success story.

Analyst reviews such as TBR’s stated that “the company provided strong evidence that its multiyear development of a cloud portfolio is bearing fruit in two areas: a cloud management system that can encompass management of service provider NFV elements, and a distributed cloud node that can be deployed as a “cloud in a box” close to the source of user demand. These developments were far ahead of service provider focused cloud solutions by other suppliers.” I was also happy to see that my article on “Cloudband, NFV and the game changing Carrier Cloud” was well ranked and generated quite a bit of traffic for Alcatel-Lucent’s blog.

Mobile World Congress 2014

#MWC2014 is set as a defining moment. We aim to impress again and are back with a Cloud Communications Platform where IMS, NFV, and SDN (Software Defined Networking) come together as part of a leading edge solution ready for customer trials. This live demonstration system also features SDM (Subscriber Data Management) in the carrier cloud.

NFV is now fast moving from concept to reality and the Cloud Communications Platform is ready for primetime in 2014. In my next post I will discuss ETSI NFV Use Case #5 on the virtualization of IMS, which is the underlying topic that Dan and I will be covering at MWC. Sue White and Lazar Obradovic will also be with the expert team on the show floor conducting deep dives.

Looking forward to seeing you in Barcelona at MWC’s Hall 3, Booth 3K10, or at any of these other venues.