Dubai, UAE: The 7th Ultra-Broadband Forum (UBBF 2021) opened today in Dubai. At the event, Peng Song, President of Global Carrier Marketing & Solution Sales at Huawei, delivered a keynote speech titled “Extend Connectivity, Drive Growth”. He defined and elaborated Huawei’s C.A.F (Coverage Architecture Fusion) model. Peng highlighted that “There are huge opportunities for connectivity. It is key for operators to build network competitiveness based on the CAF model.”
The past year has been full of both challenges and opportunities. The demands for connectivity are undergoing tremendous changes for both homes and enterprises. Homes have become centers for education, work, and trade. Enterprises no longer just focus on bandwidth for connectivity. Enterprise connectivity has changed from a communication technology (CT) to an operational technology (OT). Extending connectivity and converging with cloud becomes the main subjects related to connectivity. Today, countries around the world are accelerating digitalization, and the value of connectivity has been redefined. How can operators help accelerate the digitalization of industries, maximize the value of connectivity, and achieve new growth?
According to Peng, the C.A.F model is the key — “C” stands for coverage, “F” for fusion, and “A” for architecture.
Coverage: Explores that presently how we can extend connectivity to homes and enterprises to meet new demands and achieve business value. The demands for connectivity are changing in both homes and enterprises. Once broader coverage becomes available, operators need to extend connectivity to every room, every device, and every production system in enterprises. This will grow the number of connections, increase user stickiness, and ultimately create more business opportunities.
In home scenarios, Peng suggested two ways to extend connectivity to homes. One is to use Huawei’s full-service fiber grid planning and industry-leading AirPON and Digital Quick ODN solutions to accelerate fiber coverage and extend fiber to homes. The other is from FTTH (Fiber to the Home) to FTTR (Fiber to the Room), further extending fiber to rooms for home networking. This will bring experience beyond our imagination. While increasing user stickiness, more importantly it provides a foothold in the digital home, making it possible to develop smart services.
In enterprise scenarios, Peng emphasized that leased lines need to provide differentiated offerings to stay competitive. More importantly, connectivity needs to be extended inside enterprises from CT to OT. In this way, many problems faced by enterprises can be solved like the remote PLC control in Iron & Steel companies. This will result in enhanced production efficiency and user experience.
Fusion: Explores that in the future how connectivity can converge with cloud and enable digitalization. Digitalization is the biggest opportunity for the ICT industry. It is no longer a concept, but a reality. Undoubtedly, cloud is at the core of digitalization, but connectivity also plays a key role. According to Peng, “Fusion” is important, because connectivity needs to be cloud-centric and help enterprises migrate to cloud. Connectivity and cloud need to be converged. Operators can play a big role in this process.
In his speech, Peng mentioned two phases about fusion. In the first phase, connectivity needs to be cloud-centric. Three key words are involved in this phase: “quick” refers to deploying the intelligent cloud terminal on the enterprise side to achieve fast cloud access; “multi-cloud interconnection” involves enabling SRv6 in the backbone networks to implement multi-cloud access through a single connection; “deterministic” means providing network slicing capabilities to stay deterministic.
In the second phase, connectivity should converge with cloud, and build an ecosystem. This is the most challenging part, but also the most valuable part. It requires atomization and openness of the network capabilities to implement network selecting cloud, and cloud scheduling network.
Architecture: Explores the characteristics of network architecture required to achieve present and future business success. Peng emphasized that to facilitate network evolution, the spine-leaf mode is required to make the network architecture more flexible. And technologies such as PON and OXC are required to make network services greener. Autonomous Driving Network need to be introduced to optimize the OPEX in terms of O&M. Huawei’s continuous efforts in exploring new technologies — such as OXC, SRv6, and ADN — have strengthened the foundation of the architecture.
Peng ended his keynote speech by quoting this Arabic proverb: “Actions are fruits, while words are but leaves. Despite the harsh environment we are facing, Huawei is continuing to focus on innovation in connectivity technologies. We will continue to play our part and support our customers to achieve business success both now and in the future.”