Last Thursday night, Dialogic hosted a TAD (Telecom Application Developer) MeetUp for New Jersey, which was organized and run by Alan Quayle. Approximately 25 folks attended and we covered some interesting topics like WebRTC, what it really means and when it will be ready and virtualization.
One key topic was NFV (network functions virtualization). As readers of this blog know, I am a proponent of NFV. Dialogic has had a softwareonly based media server for over 10 years. Most of our other product lines run on COTS hardware and we’re on track for moving to software versions of those, too.
Most of the room agreed that the movement to COTS hardware makes sense and is inevitable. It was interesting, though, to hear their viewpoints about what I’ll call “true NFV.” Many expressed concerns about storage issues – for example, we can move service processes to more hardware as a service spike occurs, creating an elastic service, but where does the “removed service” data go? And what about orchestrating all of this? The group agreed that implementation in the 2018 to 2020 timeframe was realistic.
The next key topic was WebRTC. Chad Hart gave a great overview of WebRTC, and the group discussed how much potential change it could bring and how important to the carriers it could be. While I know about the voice and video part of WebRTC, I learned a few things about how the technology relates to the data channel, allowing users to create apps like photo sharing. While discussing WebRTC, I also heard people in the room say that the real value of it is with the media server. Obviously we feel this way at Dialogic, but it’s always good to hear industry veterans from outside the company say it.
All in all, it was a great event. In New Jersey, we are deep in the land of Bell-heads and it was good for me to engage in this kind of discussion, since these are real issues that need to be addressed. There were some great moments beyond the conversation as well. Carl Ford put himself on a self-imposed 15-minute silence strike so other members of the Meetup could talk. For the record, he lasted four minutes. While you may laugh, I think four minutes of silence from Carl is probably some kind of record. After he realized he spoke, he began using sign language to try and meet his 15-minute goal. He was still contributing.
We have agreed to host another TADMeetup NJ in the future, likely with a focus on WebRTC and programming and showing demos, so stay tuned for more information. We hope to see you there.