Korea Telecom provided some details on its work with Verizon on network functions virtualization (NFV) orchestrator interoperability. The result of this work could become part of an international 5G standard.
The two companies announced last week that they were testing the compatibility of their network orchestrators in anticipation of rolling out 5G networks in late 2017 and 2018. In an email exchange with SDxCentral, Korea Telecom’s Kisang Ok, who heads up the company’s NFV platform division, said that Verizon and KT agreed to expand their geographical coverage areas by having the Verizon orchestrator interoperate with the KT orchestrator. To make this happen, the two companies first defined the interface specifications including service provisioning, service status query, and status notification.
During the testing, Ok said the two companies were able to create a secure connection between KT’s orchestrator and Verizon’s orchestrator, and they instantiated the virtual firewall for each side through the NFV orchestration federation. They then tested the feasibility of the orchestrators’ federation and verified it.
Ok said the next step is for KT and Verizon to work on the specification for the orchestrator interoperability interfaces. The companies will make that specification available for “real world business.” An article in the Korea Herald, said the two companies plan to propose that the specification become part of an international standard.
Verizon and KT announced last July that they intended to work together on software-defined networking (SDN) and NFV. Verizon also said it was working with KT on GiGA technologies. The two firms are also part of the 5G Open Trial Specification Alliance. That group includes other partners like NTT DoCoMo and SK Telecom.
Both companies have an aggressive timeline for deploying pre-standard 5G networks. Verizon has said its fixed 5G network could be commercial in 2018 if all goes well. KT has said it wants its network to be ready by September in order to provide service for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang.
5G Interoperability Testing
Verizon and KT aren’t the only operators working on 5G interoperability testing. AT&T, China Mobile, NTT DoCoMo, and Vodafone teamed with vendors including Ericsson, Huawei, Intel, Nokia, and Qualcomm and others at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, in March to announce that they were committed to 5G testing and trials.