Tagged: RTC

Alcatel-Lucent @ IIT Real Time Comms.


Alcatel-Lucent’s Naperville team fostered our partnership with Illinois Tech (the Illinois Institute of Technology) by joining an impressive list of sponsors and contributing with speakers to the Real-Time Communications Conference’s 10th Anniversary. As in past editions, Carol Davids, Conference Chair, and her team managed to deliver one of the best regarded technical events in this fast evolving space.

imageI took these pictures at Ted East’s keynote. Ted is the Vice President of Alcatel-Lucent’s CIC (Cloud Innovation Center).

His presentation was centered around a live demonstration illustrating a step-by-step deployment of a sophisticated end-to-end solution comprised of an EPC (Evolved Packet Core) and IMS (IP Multimedia Subsystem) with both being onboarded in real time as VNFs (Virtual Network Functions) on a CloudBand Node.

The node performed as a multi-app-tenancy environment and is equipped to be set up in a highly distributed architecture. CloudBand is also well known by its Management System, this is the common platform orchestrating and automating the VNFs’ life cycle. I will refer you to ETSI NFV Use Case #5 on the Virtualization of the Mobile Core and IMS if interested in more background information about the demo’s purpose.

The end result was a live VoLTE (Voice over Long Term Evolution) service that network operators can now deploy and right scale at a fraction of the time when compared to conventional architectures. Ted was then able to browse the internet and make a voice call using 4G’s mobile broadband capabilities and IP (Internet Protocol) on the spot.

This demonstration also illustrated NFV (Network Functions Virtualization) and SDN (Software Defined Networking) working together as other applications were added, such as Anti-Virus and Parental Controls to name two examples. Traffic was dynamically routed to best manage network capacity.


Ted’s talk was one of the highlights of the Cloud Track, which I co-chaired with Alan Quayle and greatly benefited from Warren Bent’s tireless support, the conference’s Content Director.

Ed Elkin, Anne Lee and myself delivered talks in break out sessions covering VoLTE, WebRTC and NFV respectively.

Vijay Gurbany and I also joined well followed panel discussions.Vijay spoke at the Cloud/SDN/Big Data session and I participated in the one moderated by Light Reading’s Elizabeth Coyne with:

  • AT&T’s Mike Paradise
  • Vonage’s Alan Bugos
  • Allianza’s Ryan Higgings

Our panel was preceded by three 15 minute context setting presentations and the actual discussion dealt with the following 15 items:

  • Are telcos right to be concerned about performance in a virtualized world?
  • What can be, or is being, done to mitigate those concerns?
  • What technologies are in the pipeline that will help address performance concerns?
  • Can open platforms provide the requisite security for a telco environment?
  • Does their open nature make them more vulnerable? What are the implications of openness?
  • In a virtualized world, is the reliability of software more important than the underlying hardware’s reliability?
  • How does open source help the cause?
  • How are scalability issues being addressed?
  • Is it more of a hardware or a software issue?
  • How will the evolution of NFV colliding with movement towards the cloud play out?
  • What are the most critical implementation issues when deploying VNFs?
  • Will network PoP be easily transformed into data centers?
  • How can data center operators ensure the feedback loop to support service guarantees?
  • Do telcos have the skill set to be able to support NFV?
  • Do you think that NFV, along with SDN, is an opportunity for architects to think about networking differently?


Here is a quick note to share that Elizabeth recently launched The New IP. Light Reading’s new site focuses on the business of managing and orchestrating state-of-the-art virtualized IP networks. The blogging team includes other well known industry analysts such as Ari Banerjee, Caroline Chappell, Tom Nolle, Carol Wilson and Ray Le Maistre to name some.

By the way, a big thank you to those of you who followed my session on NFV Economics after having to reschedule from Tuesday’s “prime time lineup” to Thursday’s “last talk of the conference” due to a last minute scheduling conflict on my side.

I would also like to thank Nokia Network’s Andrew N. Rollins most sincerely for his very kind introduction, which I am humbled by, and for allowing this business case talk to take 60 minutes given the attendees’ interest (instead of just using the 30 minute slot set for this session).

Post event feedback was very positive given the speakers’ credentials and, most importantly, the high quality of the talks and follow up discussions throughout this three day professional gathering at IIT’s facility. This conference was a source of insights worth sharing and deserving blogging some more, which I am hoping to do in the next few weeks. In the meantime, I’d like to refer you to:

I also need to thank Tom Costello, who is in charge of the conference’s Public Relations, for his support, understanding and patience as well as congratulate peer conference chairs for what turned out to be successful event raising the bar and expectations for next year’s XI edition : )

  • Mobile Networks, Platforms and Applications – Maureen Stillman, Mission Critical Wireless, and Chris Mayer, Solstice Technical Consulting.
  • Web & Emerging Technologies – Alan Johnston, Avaya.
  • Next Gen 9-1-1 and Regulatory Policy – Bernard Adoba, Microsoft.
  • Internet of Things – Sateesh Adepally, Cisco.

I’m posting this without further delay and will get back to add some more hyperlinks later on.

A social media paradox?

“New research indicates that Webinars [and social media platforms], now well-established as a vital marketing tool for many companies, continue to rise in popularity. Almost 75% of companies surveyed recently by DemandGen Report have increased the frequency of webinars they host […] 84% use webinars for lead generation, 75% have increases frequency of webinars in the past year, more than 50% use LinkedIn and Twitter for webinar promotion […] it’s a 360-degree approach before, during and after a webinar.” – “Maximizing Webinars with Social and Interactive Engagement” by DemandGen. Research sponsored by GoToWebinar in 2010.

“1.83M corporate and business meetings, trade shows, conventions, congresses, incentive events and other meetings take place in the U.S., resulting in: $280B in direct spending, 1.78M U.S. jobs, $115B contribution to GDP, $28B in federal, state and local tax revenue, $66.8B in U.S. labor income […] contribution to the U.S. GDP is greater than, for example, motion picture/recording industry ($113B), performing arts/spectator sports/museums ($87B) and information and data processing services ($80B). Combined direct, indirect and induced effects of the meeting industry to GDP total $393B.” – “2012 Economic Significance Study” by PwC for the Convention Industry Council.


I am reviewing my notes from a discussion that I facilitated in 2009 here in Chicago. Frost & Sullivan’s Executive MindXchange program invited me as a thought leader to an event focusing on social media in the enterprise environment. We were addressing the future marketing impact of online tools such as webinars and social networking platforms. Some comments pointed to rapid growth cannibalizing budgets otherwise allocated to conventional events.

That discussion led to a scenario where companies would undertake more online marketing activities while downsizing the scope and scale of efforts traditionally devoted to industry trade shows and conventions. In hindsight, the paradox is that online communications and social media’s growth might have helped foster participation in conventional events instead. I am thinking of two factors worth considering as follows.

First, new technologies have lowered barriers and democratized access to communication channels. There now is a higher signal-to-noise ratio and, therefore, a more pressing need to clearly standout and differentiate. Second, analytics have become of the essence and relationships are king.

We are now paying far more attention to metrics dealing with: reputation, engagement depth and quality, meaningful conversations, leads and conversions and, most importantly, experiences and relationships. In this context, meeting in person and capturing someone’s undivided attention with a compelling demonstration experience can make all of the difference. I am thinking of businesses where personal relationships are paramount whether we are talking about decision makers and/or influencers.

As a result both online and conventional activities happen to be growing for many of us. I just took a quick look at my involvement in 50+ industry events since 2008 and created the above chart. I was interested in getting a feel for the relative share of the roles I get to play. Public speaking engagements and demonstrations of emerging and next generation technologies account for 50%. This is intertwined with social media as consultaglobal, my former blog and network on innovation management registered 500,000+ views while innovarista (this new blog) is picking up the pace.

Demystifying the fast emerging Carrier Cloud

“Becoming and staying relevant in today’s cloud environment is not only driven by offering more services faster, but also by understanding the emergence of new tectonic plates such as the fast shifting Carrier Cloud. This is a game changing paradigm, one which entails the underlying infrastructure and platform behind NFV, Network Functions Virtualization coupled with SDN, Software Defined Networking, at scale.”

“Moreover, the rationale behind engineering next generation SDPs, Service Delivery Platforms, and OSS, Operations Support Systems, in the digital communications industry has to do with delivering a pool of shared and fully automated network resources that developers addressing multimedia services (voice, video, data) with QoS, Quality of Service, do not need to replicate and can, therefore, take advantage of with the right SLA, Service Level Agreements, in place.”

“This redefines mutually beneficial “coopetition” where rich communication services are set to outdo or even make over-the-top ones better. A perfect match for Carrier Clouds purposely built to deliver a pool of shared cloud and network infrastructure: a programmable carrier grade fabric enabling the ecosystem to operate with unprecedented agility, unparalleled scalability and, equally important, at cost efficient levels. But what will it take to get there?

IIT Real Time Communications Conference & Expo – Program Schedule, Tuesday October 15 at 10:00am.


Tomorrow Tuesday I will be speaking at IIT Real Time Communications conference. I am scheduled to contribute to two sessions. The first one is a panel discussion that takes place at 9:00 am (see below). Thereafter, I will be presenting on “demystifying the fast emerging carrier cloud.”

My role in the panel is to cover the WAN, Wide Area Network, side of the story, which relates to how cloud technologies are impacting the more conventional network operator environment. Then, in my talk, I will further develop what the new carrier cloud entails and will position NFV, Network Functions Virtualization, and SDN, Software Defined Networking, as key developments in that space.

By the way, the above picture was taken at last year’s event where I also joined a panel. Back then, the topic I was engaged in had to do with a business ecosystem. Telcos and OTT, Over the Top, players did not yet see eye to eye for the most part. My belief was that we were already entering a new ecosystem where coopetition would become a fact of life for all of us. That should permeate through the value chain and, hence, happen in everyone’s best interest.

A year later, I do think that we are actually turning a corner for the better. The growing integration of IT and Carrier technologies is fostering one another’s awareness and understanding on what each brings to the table. That alone is changing behaviors on both sides by blending technologies and practices where it makes sense. We are now innovating at the intersection as well. Frankly speaking, many of us do not think that unnecessarily prolonging a debate in terms of seemingly irreconcilable bell-heads vs. net-heads is the way to go in what’s now the cloud age. So, I highly recommend attending Sarah Reedy’s panel discussion on Tuesday at 3:00 pm, which will involve T-Mobile’s Ahmad Armand, AT&T’s Mike Paradise and Comcast’s Ken Greene.

See you at IIT Real Time Communications Conference 2013.

“Panel participants will provide a set of defined perspectives that will allow participants to put each of the presentations of the Cloud Track into the context of the Cloud Service Consumer, Cloud Service Provider, and Cloud Service Creator. The Security, Resiliency, Performance and Governance of the Cloud will be woven into the discussion as examples are presented.”

IIT Real Time Communications Conference & Expo – Program Schedule, Tuesday October 15 at 09:00am.