We are never going back to proprietary networks. Today’s world is all about open—from APIs to partnerships to end-to-end orchestrated services. It’s about time.
Vendor lock-in is dead. Proprietary specifications are dead. Closed vendor ecosystems are dead. Today’s networks are increasingly defined on de facto and du jour open standards—call it open source, call it open APIs, call it whatever you want. It’s all about openness and collaboration. Vendor consortia are open, as are the many partnerships and pairings between standards-defining organizations.
The power of open source and open standards
In May, I attended TM Forum Live, the big telecommunications management conference in Nice, France, produced by the TM Forum. Once a bastion of operations support systems (OSS) and business support systems (BSS) for carriers, TM Forum is all about digital transformation and open standards. More than two dozen multivendor interoperability and proof-of-concept demonstrations—which the conference calls “Catalysts”—showed off the power of open source and open standards. But that was only the start.
At this year’s conference, TM Forum unveiled an expanded set of comprehensive Open APIs and tools that truly extend networks beyond closed and walled gardens. The APIs encompass everything from customer management to carrier product catalogs to Internet of Things to Smart Cities, and they will enable a huge array of ecosystem partners to begin building and offering end-to-end services.
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