A Roadmap for Virtualization in HFC Networks (2019)

By Andrew Bender, VMware

The virtualization of software workloads to provide network functions is a concept that has arisen in multiple industries, including the MSO/MVPD operator community. Most initial implementations of Network Function Virtualization have followed a pattern of centralized sites that correspond to regional serving area or national data centers. But driven by the need to bring services, resources, and intelligence deeper into the HFC plant in closer proximity to subscribers the industry is promoting virtualization deeper in the access network. A leading example would be Distributed Access Architecture (DAA) or Distributed CCAP Architecture (DCA), and the associated Remote PHY Devices (RPDs). But there are other use cases and architectures driving demand for edge network intelligence including Cloud DVR, CDNs, as well as mobility driven multi-access edge computing (MEC) and 5G; all of which bear consideration for deployments as well. Going forward, a platform strategy and framework for virtualization, which anticipates multiple applications and software driven technologies spanning access and centralized data centers will enable operators to enable new revenue streams and drive operational efficiencies across their service portfolio.

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