The explosion of smartphones (~1.5 billion sold in 2015), the proliferation of applications accessible through 4G mobile networks, and the advent of over-the-top (OTT) services have all put pressure on traditional service providers to differentiate themselves, keep the customer base loyal and, most importantly, recover revenues currently flowing to OTT providers and other MNO competitors.
If the transition to virtualized environments in the enterprise is any indicator, it appears that the transition to NFV in CSPs is only a question of when, not if. Why is this so? Well, for the same reason the enterprises did it: to be more agile.
Despite all the attention NFV is getting, there are areas that still need to be explored. For example, most of the discussion today revolved around the technology and the various options to adopt it, but few are thinking further down the road about how to ensure Service Assurance functions in these highly abstracted and complex virtual environments.
Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) have to adapt to a rapidly changing market. The explosion of smartphones(~1 Billion sold in 2014), the applications accessible through mobile networks and the advent of Over-the-Top (OTT) Services are clearly putting pressure on the traditional Service Providers to differentiate themselves, keep the customer base loyal and, most importantly, recover revenues that are currently flowing toward the OTT providers (or to other MNO competitors).