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Network functions virtualization (NFV)/software-defined networking (SDN) initiatives among communications service providers (CSPs) are moving from incubation to industrialization as initial NFV/SDN use cases, i.e., vEPC, vCPE, and NFV in the data center, are providing an early return on investments.


  • Global NFV revenue growth is accelerating. Market drivers remain improved capex/opex, and even more so, the ability to deliver innovative services. CSPs will increase efforts over the next year to integrate the functions of both MANO and OSS/BSS.

Features and Benefits

  • Analyze the global NFV revenue opportunity and its main drivers.
  • Assess the industry changes over the past year that will have most impact on future NFV strategies.

Key questions answered

  • What are the market drivers for growth in NFV revenue over the next five years?
  • How are the developments in open source for networking impacting the market?

Table of contents


  • In brief
  • Ovum view
  • Recommendations for service providers
  • Recommendations for vendors

The NFV environment

  • ETSI NFV framework
  • NFV framework vendors and organizations

NFV/SDN market drivers

  • Capex and opex savings are on the horizon
  • Growing momentum in open source
  • Cloud-native drives increased demand in support for container solutions

NFV/SDN market constraints

  • Developing the right talent
  • Continued struggles between physical and virtual network integration
  • Management complexities in an expanding multivendor environment

Industry changes in 2017

  • Key NFV events in 2017

Global NFV market to reach $34bn in 2022

  • Forecast definitions
  • Market size


  • Methodology
  • Further reading
  • Author

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