AT&T revealed in a blog late last week that it has released the Virtual Optical Line Termination Hardware Abstraction (VOLTHA) 1.0 open access software platform into the Open Networking Foundation (ONF). The carrier says VOLTHA will enable the deployment of XGS-PON within a software-defined access cloud environment.
Eddy Barker, assistant vice president, technical design and architecture at AT&T Labs, writes in the blog that AT&T has begun proof-of-concept lab tests of VOLTHA ahead of XGS-PON field trials scheduled to launch before the end of this year (see "AT&T plans field trial of open system, cloud-based XGS-PON"). Barker says another release of VOLTHA is in the works that will provide the foundation for managing multiple services, including 5G wireless, on a single network.
The carrier also has submitted seven hardware specifications for next-generation access networks to the Open Compute Project (OCP). The VOLTHA and hardware specification are part of an overall drive to deploy software-defined networking and network functions virtualization (SDN/NFV) concepts in AT&T's network. Barker reiterated his company's goal to have 55% of its networks virtualized by the end of 2017 and have 75% of its traffic on its SDN infrastructure by 2020.
Calix has already announced support of VOLTHA, which also has been associated with the Central Office Rearchitected as a Data Center (CORD) initiative (see "Calix offers AXOS OFx Connector for commercialization of CORD and ONOS"), and others are expected to follow soon. In addition to Calix, ADTRAN has offered a vision of software-defined access (see "ADTRAN Mosaic platform aims at software-defined access networks"), while Nokia unveiled its software-defined access offering today (see "Nokia unveils Altiplano software-defined access platform, Lightspan programmable access nodes").
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