The recent TMForum’s Digital Transformation conference at Nice France, focused on the evolution of Operational Support Systems (OSS) and Business Support Systems (BSS), as the OSS/BSS industry is facing a transformation. The biggest challenge is that the OSS architecture is changing and is becoming based on openAPIs and common data stores that enable automation and the use of AI and ML.
A new architecture is being formulated for Digital Service Providers (DSPs) – DSP is the evolution of Communication Service Provider (CSP). The new OSS architecture requires new generation “smarter” NMS systems but completely replaces OSS/BSS traditional applications with new smaller customer-facing or resource-facing applications.
OpenAPIs, opensource software, centralized data sources suitable for AI are the critical building blocks of the new architecture.
Network as a service (NaaS) / Cloud network
In the new OSS architecture, OSS and BSS are “squeezed”, their functionality is minimized and is now based on catalogs.
- Services are managed from “cradle to grave”.
- OpenAPIs are critical
- Cloud network is not yet a reality but it will soon become reality.
No more silos – no more legacy OSS/BSS
The new architecture eliminates silos by “squeezing” OSS/BSS systems and replacing them with smaller scale applications that use open APIs
to enable a true platform architecture.
NMS/EMS systems remain, but catalogs are important
In the new OSS architecture, the operational domain is the custodian of services offering the following functions:
- Expose standard TMF APIs
- Use standard Service exposures
- Maintain a catalog of services for the domain
- Maintain inventory of resources and service instances
- Develop, grow and exit services
- Operate and assure exposed services
- Support composite services, including smaller vendors or domains such as AAA, BNG etc.
openAPIs are critical, as they will enable a common architecture across all domains. These openAPIs are based on TMForum APIs and MEF
- TMforum is closely cooperating with MEF for the new APIs.
- Tier-1 vendors (Vodafone, BT, DT) expressed their belief on the openAPIs value
- No commercial implementations of openAPIs yet, but lots of trials are taking place.