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April 26, 2021

Software Defined Everything: Regulatory Trends

By GlobalData Thematic Research

SDE technology revolves around software platforms and applications which offer flexibility and automation. These platforms and applications are appealing to any organisation with a significant investment in the data centres.

Regulatory Trends

Listed below are the key regulatory trends impacting the software defined everything (SDE) theme, as identified by GlobalData.

Open RAN

Telecom operators use radio access networks (RAN) to connect wireless devices to the network, whether to make calls or access the internet. A RAN provides radio access and helps to coordinate the network across wireless devices. At present, most infrastructure companies offer proprietary RAN approaches that lock in the telecom service providers.

The Open RAN alliance brings open source principles into RAN architecture and makes hardware interoperable. Open RAN is based on software defined principles, with the separation of hardware and software. It will allow multiple infrastructure vendors’ radios and hardware to be used interchangeably rather than requiring one vendor’s proprietary “closed” products.

The big infrastructure vendors, including Nokia and Ericsson, and service providers like AT&T, Verizon, China Mobile, and NTT, are key members of the alliance, alongside more than 30 tech companies. These members assert that using software defined networking (SDN) in 5G will foster open and interoperable equipment, bringing cost savings and more flexible networks. Interoperable networks will also help build a supply chain ecosystem that minimises the fear of technological fragmentation, which reflects current geopolitical tensions.

This is an edited extract from the Software Defined Everything – Thematic Research report produced by GlobalData Thematic Research.