Nokia Launches Cloud Software Subscription Service For Telcos

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Nokia announces entry into Software-as-a-Service segment, by offering multiple software services to communication service providers

Finnish networking giant Nokia has announced has entered the Software-as-a-Service sector, by offering communication service providers (CSPs, or carriers, telcos, operators etc) multiple services.

Nokia on Wednesday announced a new approach to strengthen business outcomes for CSPs through a “highly flexible, fully automated, lower cost software model.”

Nokia intends to offer CSP services in the areas of analytics, security, and data management, and these services will be commercially available in early 2022.

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Nokia SaaS

The decision by Nokia to introduce multiple Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) services for CSPs, is designed to allow telecom firms and operators to offer a less expensive, more flexible, and more customer-centric pathway for operating their networks or delivering new services.

Nokia said that offering SaaS for CSPs is a natural evolution of Everything-as-a-Service, a key element to Nokia’s overall strategy.

“It reflects a culmination of steps Nokia has taken in recent years to enhance CSP network operations, including rearchitecting its software applications to make them fully cloud-native and deployable in any cloud environment, edge, public or private,” the Finnish firm said.

Nokia says that carriers and operators need to “shift away from the legacy practice of deploying customised software for analytics, security, network management, and other functions, that run on costly, complex, on-premise infrastructure,” in order for them to capitalise on 5G opportunities.

Nokia therefore wants to improve value and reduce complexity by providing software consumed purely on demand through a subscription.

This removes costly up front capital expenditure, thanks to removing the need to perform on-site software maintenance and updates.

Cost savings are also achieved because it allows carriers and operators to quickly launch new services and achieve “time to value” quicker.

To help achieve this, Nokia said that as part of the line-up of SaaS services, Nokia Data Marketplace (NDM) is “now commercially available through a SaaS framework to give CSPs an easy and secure way to share and access data.”

It pointed out that NDM was launched “as a service” earlier this year.

The new SaaS version of NDM offers enhanced automation, efficiency and scalability to CSPs and enterprises in a variety of industry verticals, including energy, public sector, transportation, and smart cities, said Nokia.

“The convergence of 5G, cloud native software and SaaS creates a great and fast-growing opportunity for Nokia,” said Raghav Sahgal, President of Cloud and Network Services at Nokia.

“With the groundwork we’ve already been laying, our SaaS delivery framework is in a very strong competitive position,” said Sahgal. “It enables a combination of rapid time to value with on-demand access for Nokia SaaS applications and low cost of ownership, based on a pay-as-you-go / pay-as-you-grow commercial model. This is a multi-year journey and we are going at it aggressively.”

Long time coming

Nokia for a years now has sought to grow its software business.

In 2015 for example, entered the race to win cloud data centre customers with the release of tools that specifically benefit mobile carriers.

The Finnish firm at the time said its ‘AirFrame Data Centre Solution’, and said it would help telcos meet the scalability and demand required for modern mobile network use.

Specifically, the AirFrame release consists of servers and switches that include Nokia Networks own tools that claim to make it more efficient than rival platforms in running demanding mobile virtual network functions (VNFs).

In 2016 Nokia also expanded its telco cloud data centre offerings, with the opening of a design centre in the UK to help operators prepare for the cloud.

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Author: Tom Jowitt
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