Red Hat: We need to talk about cloud-native

As they edge (sic) towards a 5G architecture, can the network operator community build on key takeaways from their early virtualization efforts? Susan James, senior director of Telecommunications Strategy at Red Hat, sure as hell hopes so. "The telcos need to look at what has been learned from the NFV years," says James, adding pointedly, "there's no point in just dumping applications into containers." And that could be the temptation as the telecom sector starts to embrace the cloud-native aspects of 5G and all that encompasses, from new ways of building, onboarding, integrating, managing, exposing and supporting applications, whether developed in-house or sourced from third-party developers.cTelcos have been talking about cloud-native for a few years, since they realized that somewhat monolithic virtualized network functions (VNFs) running on early NFV infrastructure platforms would only get them a smidge of the agility and flexibility they seek. Instead, a wide-area-network friendly, carrier-grade version of the containerized systems increasingly popular with large enterprises and the data center brigade look far better suited for the challenges that full-blown 5G (with its gazillions of potentially latency-intolerant devices connected to edge platforms) will bring.

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