Niall Norton of Amdocs on 5G charging and that AWS announcement

5G is the birthplace of new markets for telcos. So says Niall Norton, General Manager of the Networking Software Division at Amdocs in the recent interview with Disruptive.Asia’s Tony Poulos. Niall was previously CEO of Openet now one of the key pillars of the Networking Software Division at Amdocs.

5G is different and 5G charging needs to be extremely flexible to support all the services that 5G will enable. The key to success in these new markets enabled by 5G, is charging.

There will be an enormous number of new circumstances that telcos will need to adapt their charging systems to manage. There will be thousands, if not millions of new devices and flexibility will be critical. In fact, says Norton, there will be cases where enterprises served by telcos and their partners will be able to (and want to) do the charging themselves.

The recent announcement that AWS is launching its own private 5G network caused a stir in the industry but Norton chuckles at the thought that it is about to be the end of the world for telcos and their 5G ambitions. Whether it is a statement of intent, good PR, a wake-up call or something else, Norton says that Openet works with AWS and other hyperscalers and his prediction is that the hyperscalers will be effective channels for telcos to address the enterprise market.

It is highly unlikely that they are on a collision course.

Networks are evolving, says Norton. Just three years ago neither Openet nor Amdocs were ‘in’ networks, yet Norton is GM of Amdocs Software Networking Division because networks are now all about software programming on what are very ‘vanilla’ boxes. It is inevitable, and evolution and Norton applauds the standardisation work being done by bodies such as the TM Forum and ETSI.

The real question for the industry is whether, in this emerging platform world, telcos are ready to be as flexible as they need to be.

Watch this first of two interviews with Niall Norton to get his complete views on AWS, 5G charging and the evolution of the telco and networking industry.

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