Broadband Forum, SDN/NFV Industry Alliance to create open broadband lab for Asia

broadband forum
From left: Robin Mersh, CEO of Broadband Forum, and Wei Leping, president of SDN/NFV Industry Alliance, announce the partnership at the China SDN/NFV Conference 2017.

The Broadband Forum and SDN/NFV Industry Alliance have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to jointly establish the Open Broadband Laboratory Asia (OBLA) to develop network cloud standards verification, testing, solution conformance and a proving ground for new services.

The focus of the OBLA will be acceleration of go-to-market and go-to-production for new services and applications, and the migration from existing broadband infrastructures to cloud-based ones introducing NFV and SDN technologies.

Under the agreement, the Forum will exclusively license the SDN/NFV Industry Alliance to undertake the construction of OBLA in China and to conduct conformance and interoperability testing, migration best practices, technical due diligence and training around the project. The SDN/NFV Industry Alliance will build and manage the OBLA, while the Broadband Forum will provide technical direction, testing methods, a standards framework and domain expertise.

“As operators look to bring the efficiencies of data centers and cloud technologies to the network, gradually transforming it to a software-based infrastructure, it is incredibly important that we speed up standards, testing, conformance and best practice to ensure smarter, programmable and faster networks that deliver leading edge capability for operators and world-class experience for their customers,” said Broadband Forum Chairman Kevin Foster, of BT. “This new lab facility is a strategic and natural evolution of the Forum’s ongoing work on virtualization and cloud, with almost every project in our current scope now connected to these next-generation network technologies.”

The OBLA builds on the Broadband Forum’s ongoing and completed virtualization and cloud projects, including the “network enhanced residential gateway”, which shifts functionalities from the residential gateway to the operator’s network, cloud central office, fixed access network sharing, SDN in the access network, and the virtual business gateway.

This complements the SDN/NFV Industry Alliance’s focus on increasing the readiness in SDN commercial utilization and promoting the healthy development of the SDN industry, the Broadband Forum said in a statement.

The partnership – which was signed during the China SDN/NFV Conference in Beijing last week – also marked the launch of the Broadband Forum’s Open Broadband initiative, tasked with the mission to create an open framework for cloud-based broadband.

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