By Barak Perlman
Ethernity Networks recently took part in the 2Q18 MEF Members Meeting, Athens, Greece, participating in several workgroup meetings, workshops, and other sessions.
The MEF quarterly meetings are a great place to meet industry experts from all over the world and an opportunity to discuss both technical issues and the direction of the market. More than 100 participants from over 50 companies, including especially heavy representation from carriers and service providers, attended the event. The MEF Athens meetings included sessions covering many of the group’s current work focuses, including SD-WAN service attributes, IP service attributes for IP subscribers, a Mobile Backhaul implementation agreement, and cloud service attributes.
An extensive workshop was devoted to 5G, which is much more than just another generation of wireless communication. 5G introduces new use cases and new revenue streams that all require exceedingly low latency. While initial implementations will use LTE-A, the eventual goal is to use New Radio (NR) transmission, although there are migration issues anticipated before getting to that point. While various transport options exist, one idea is to employ a MEF-based Mobile Backhaul (MBH) network for 5G.
Ethernity’s MEF-compliant ENET flow processors are ideal for implementing 5G wireless networks thanks to their low-latency and programmable pipeline with support for network slicing and dedicated features, including security, crypto, frame fragmentation, programmable header compression, and traffic management, all on a fully programable FPGA platform.
Ethernity is proud to be a MEF member and looks forward to continuing mutually-beneficial interactions through this industry association of service providers and industry technology leaders working toward the adoption of carrier-grade networks and services.
To date, MEF has produced over 60 technical specifications and numerous white papers to standardize, promote, and explain Carrier Ethernet and virtualized networks. MEF used to be known as the Metro Ethernet Forum, dealing exclusively with Ethernet, but it has expanded its scope beyond Ethernet, also covering Layer 1 and Layer 3 services.
MEF’s membership base includes a mix of service providers, hardware and software technology vendors, testing, training, and other companies from every geographic region of the world. MEF 3.0 work will enable automated delivery of standardized Carrier Ethernet, Layer 1, IP, SD-WAN and Layer 4-7 services across multiple service providers.
MEF18, the annual global MEF event is scheduled in Los Angeles for October 29 to November 2 of this year. With approximately 1000 people expected in attendance, including carriers, vendors, and, of course, MEF members, MEF18 will empower industry stakeholders with high-quality content, peer-to-peer networking opportunities, and valuable insight into cutting-edge services and technologies.