By Diana Goovaerts

Open source requires competitors to become collaborators

Companies taking part in the open source revolution have to change not only the way they develop software, but also how they do business, Angela Logothetis, VP and CTO for Amdocs Open Network group, revealed.

Logothetis told Mobile World Daily open source “requires a new way of procuring, deploying and supporting software”, a business change she said can in some ways be harder than adapting to the new technology.

“Open source requires traditional competitors – service provider to service provider, vendor to vendor, to collaborate together. We are seeing this start to happen, for example, between AT&T and Verizon. Despite direct competition with each other, AT&T has invested effort in convincing Verizon to join ONAP – they are now working together in ONAP since they found common benefits.”

In addition to teaming up, Logothetis noted companies also need to invest in new personnel, including software architects, developers, testers and support teams. While she acknowledged hiring more staff “cannibalises some of the savings promised by open source”, she pointed out companies have the option to minimise costs by taking a co-development approach.

Logothetis argued the investment is worth it, as 5G offers the opportunity to “fundamentally re-architect the radio network”.

She concluded: “Open source is an essential pillar to deliver the promises of 5G and the digital world. If the telecommunications industry continues to work within a model based on a handful of [network equipment providers] delivering proprietary network functions, the openness, agility innovation and cost efficiencies needed for 5G won’t be achieved, and the industry risks getting stuck with a 5G technology but a 4G operating model.”

Angela Logothetis is speaking in the Open Networks session today at 14:15.