J’son & Partners Consulting presents brief results of the research: New trends in mobile communication: Network functions virtualization (NFV) and Software-defined Networking (SDN), which includes survey of the largest Russian telecom operators and their plans on SDN and NFV implementation on commercial networks.




In August-September 2014 the major part of surveyed mobile and fixed communication operators (over 70%) were on the stage of research and analysis of SDN and NFV opportunities. Half of the operators are testing these technologies.



Terms for implementation of technologies on the commercial operators' networks


The prevailing part of surveyed Russian operators consider that the implementation of SDN/NFV technologies on commercial network will happen in 2-3 years during  2016 – 2017, around 7% of respondents expect this in 2015 and 29% - cannot estimate. 



Network's segments, where first implementation of SDN/NVF more likely to be expected


Major part of surveyed operators couldn’t name part of the network or infrastructure, where first implementations can be expected. Those, who answered, marked that it will more likely be in: package EPC core, IMS, trunk transport network segments (forecast for NFV implementation in the network domain) and in operators' DPCs.


SDN/NFV Development Drivers


70% of the surveyed operators have named the cut of terms for network's modernization (because of simplified network's infrastructure) - a key development driver for SDN/NFV. Almost 2/3 of the surveyed respondents also called the decreased OPEX among 3 key drivers.




Deterrent factors


Half of respondents called the lack of informational awareness of market participants and lack of industry standards on SDN/NFV markets – key deterrent factors. According to the representative of one of the operators, lack of information awareness – factor, which brings all the others, as this is the key barrier for SDN/NFV implementation.


Other factors include the following: unproved economic effectiveness, not readiness of vendors and risks of networks' security decrease.



As of September 2014 – Russian operators are planning or already have tested SDN on their networks. According J’son & Partners estimations optimistic scenario – the first implementation on commercial network can be expected within the next year, more realistic scenario – in 2-3 years. NFV concept is still less “ready” and operators are waiting for successful cases on the global market. Lack of information awareness about technologies is a key barrier for SDN/NFV implementation.


Detailed results of the Research are presented in the full version of the Report: New trends in mobile communication:  Network functions virtualization (NFV) and Software-defined Networking (SDN)




1. Prerequisite for SDN development

2. Definition of  SDN, NFV and SDN concept and architecture

3. SDN standardization

4. SDN market structure

5. Key drivers and constraining factors of NVF and SDN development

  5.1.Key drivers

      5.1.1.   Networks infrastructure simplifying

      5.1.2.   Lowering capital and operational expenditures

      5.1.3.   Time frame for new services’ implementation

  5.2. Deterrent factors

6. Key Market Players – SDN  


  6.2.Networks vendors


7. Several implementation projects of NFV and SDN in the world

8. Perspectives for implementation in Russia (results of the survey)

9. Transit to SDN/NFV strategy

10. Vendors’ solutions and transit on SDN strategy

  10.1.            HP

  10.2.            Intel

  10.3.            Alcatel-Lucent

  10.4.            Ericsson

  10.5.            Huawei

  10.6.            Cisco

  10.7.            Citrix Systems

  10.8.            NEC

  10.9.            RAD

  10.10.          Dell

  10.11.          Brocade

  10.12.          Pluribus Networks

  10.13.          IBM

  10.14.          Oracle

  10.15.          VMWare

  10.16.          Juniper Networks

  10.17.          Nokia

  10.18.          Ciena

  10.19.          Others

11. Forecast




Figure 1. ArchitectureSDN

Figure 2. Examples of managed services with SDN and NFV

Figure 3. Architecture of cloud radio access network (C-RAN)

Figure 4. SDN market structure in 2016

Figure 5. Decrease in capital expenditures – C-RAN implementation, %, China Mobile case

Figure 6. Decrease in total networks’ cost (ownership), %

Figure 7. SDN market players’ ecosystem

Figure 8. SDN-network by NTT operator

Figure 9. SDN|NFV status in Russia

Figure 10. Implementation terms - SDN|NFV based on operators’ commercial network

Figure 11. TOP-3 development drivers for SDN/NFV

Figure 12. TOP-3 deterrent factors for SDN/NFV development

Figure 13. Architecture levels, covered by Cisco ONE

Figure 14. Cisco Evolved Services Platform structure

Figure 15. vEPC NEC

Figure 16. IBM SDN platform for Virtual Environments

Figure 17. Networks’ evolution to NFV

Figure 18. NFV-solution Nokia, MWC 2014

Figure 19. Trial model scheme – Ciena

Figure 20. SDN Market, mln. USD, 2013-2016

Figure 21. SDN Market, bln. USD, 2013-2018

Figure 22. Share of expenses on SDN maintenance, %, 2013-2018

Figure 23. SDN market, 2012-2017



Table 1. Operating expenses structure – BS operation activity

Table 2. Deterrent factors in networks and IT spheres

Table 3. NEC solutions in Carrier SDN sphere


List of companies mentioned in Report



This Information Note is Prepared by J’son & Partners Consulting, We strive to provide factual and prognostic data that fully reflect the situation and are available to us before issuing the material. J’son & Partners Consulting reserves the right to revise the data after publication of new official information by the market players.