China Mobile Communications Corporation (CMCC) is one of the world’s largest telecommunications service providers in terms of network scale, customer base and market value. At the end of 2014 CMCC had over 800 million subscribers, operated in over 2.2 million base stations and covered 99 percent of the population in the People’s Republic of China. Their primary business is mobile services and the company has been exploring SDN and NFV as a means of managing rapid traffic growth, new service deployment and improving network utilization – especially as they look to expand their global footprint in APAC, Europe and the US.

Vision for the Next-Generation Network

China Mobile recently shared its vision for the next-generation network for the year 2020. It centers around NovoNet, the company’s program to deliver a high quality, intelligent network that will help them realize the interconnection of all things. “Thanks to to the emergence of SDN in the past couple years, there’s a paradigm shift happening. SDN and NFV will give us the hope we can use to build out our new next-generation network,” says Alex Zhang, principal architect at China Mobile Technology US.

SDN for the Enterprise

Zhang shared CMCC’s top SDN use cases. He emphasized that their key strategy was to firstly deploy in Cloud Data Centers and Packet Transport Networks (PTN) for their enterprise customers. China Mobile is using OpenStack in conjunction with OpenDaylight to build out several enterprise service offerings under the NovoDC including a virtual private cloud.

Zhang shared that China Mobile has many years of experience in providing public cloud services. With NovoDC, they wanted to introduce a virtual, private cloud service that will create a very powerful environment to attract enterprise customers. China Mobile is unifying orchestration by integrating OpenStack, VMware, multiple hypervisors and OpenDaylight. Their goal is to pursue a “common infrastructure and a common framework so we can manage different cloud services including public cloud, virtual private cloud and telco integrated cloud (TIC) using the same environment and platform,” Zhang says.

Commitment to Open Source

Zhang shared that we can expect to see a lot more about SDN from China Mobile this year. “We are fully committed to open networking and open source including our work with OPNFV, OpenDaylight and OpenStack. We’re a big believer in open source, community driven projects as the best environment to get things done,” he says.

View the full video presentation “China Mobile SDN Views, Strategy & Use Cases”, presented by Alex Zhang, China Mobile at OpenDaylight Mini Summit, October 2015