As part of our 2016 Trends Survey, DT Publisher Alec Barton spoke to Cisco’s SP Sales CTO Paolo Campoli about the company’s predictions for the coming year based on developments in 2015. The full interview will be published in the downloadable Trends Survey Report, available shortly.
What do you feel Cisco’s most significant developments and achievements in emerging markets were in 2015?
The key driver in terms of infrastructure has been overbuilding capacity for internal exchanges to cope with explosion of fixed and mobile video, to foster connectivity among enterprises. Particularly with regard to what we’ve been doing in the Middle East and South Africa, quite often these services providers have been pushing the envelope of innovation in terms of driving network simplicity, but also designing something that they want to be the reference platform over and above 2020. Quite often these customers have pretty ambitious targets in terms of simplification, cost optimisation, high capacity and long lasting architecture. It’s in the transport and packet optical domain.
The other key area of development is related to NFV. In 2015 this boiled down to two elements. Firstly, a laser focus on use cases: moving from trials and proof of concept that kept us busy during 2014, we’ve moved into delivering use cases that either play in the direction of incremental revenue stream and monetisation or higher network efficiencies. For example, the ability to deliver virtualised managed business services or virtualised CPEs is a key driver, as is virtualised packet.
The other one is to invest in a horizontal NFV infrastructure platform suited for most of the next development; i.e. invest once on a multi-vendor, open standard NFV platform which is able to host virtual network functions from both Cisco and third parties. This has been a clear trend in 2015, but on the horizon we’re starting to see demand to blend this investment in NFV with data centre private or virtual private cloud - a single data centre infrastructure supporting a combination of softer modules that offer both network function virtualisation as well as virtual private cloud services.
Is this for service providers to offer to their enterprise customers, or for themselves?
Both – virtual private cloud services can be offered to the market or used for internal consumption. Internal IT within service providers has to become a foundation to digital transformation and agility; as with any other enterprise customer, they want to start having more flexibility in terms of workload, so even their internal IT becomes a billable resource. Many of the models related to cloud can therefore also apply to IT.