Don’t Fast Forward the SDN button on the remote just yet

Intel continues their advance into SDN with the release of reference designs for both a server and a switch to promote rapid ecosystem development for SDN/NFV.

If the IT and telecom communities rally around its initiative, the combined scale economies could be huge.    One wag once said, “Faster, better or cheaper – pick any two.”   SDN / NFV holds out the promise of capturing all three, and a key part of that is infrastructure cost.  This is to be understood in the light of disruptive vs. sustaining innovation, a la The Innovator’s Dilemma.  This could go either way in the telecom industry, disruptive or sustaining, and that has a big bearing not only on financial outcomes of all involved, but also determine the winners and ….  

If Intel succeeds, we can expect increased competition in the industry – regardless of how it gains traction.  Disrupting and sustaining aspects will determine the winners and losers. Since most of the telecom infrastructure is already Intel Inside®, except for some of the hardware accelerated elements such as in the GGSN/PGW and DPI, it is only a matter of time until the mobile operators figure out what  Intel Inside® means and the supply chain reacts accordingly.  Anyone that has studied Porter and Christensen won’t need to Fast Forward the movie to see how things will end. 

So stay tuned and put the remote down, as there is still a lot of plot and character development to follow.  Winners, losers, villains, damsels in distress, treachery, chivalry, knights in shining armor, and not doubt a few character roles for those pursuing a Monty Python Black Knight strategy.  So grab a seat and get ready for the greatest show on Internet.