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AT&T: Orange to Conduct ECOMP Trial, SDN Prospects Bright


U.S. telecom giant AT&T Inc. T and French telecom Orange S.A. ORAN have been teaming up on open source initiatives in order to accelerate the standardization of software-defined networking (SDN) and network function virtualization (NFV). In relation to this, AT&T recently declared that it has found its first telecom partner to test its open-source Enhanced Control, Orchestration, Management, and Policy (ECOMP) platform.

The main purpose of the trial is to create and manage a software-defined network so that it can be easily accessed by cloud developers and other operators. Apart from this, both the companies aim to simplify technological integration, increase operational efficiency and cut down expenditures. However, AT&T is gearing up to release ECOMP as open source software in collaboration with the Linux Foundation.

Reports state that Orange intends to assess ECOMP first in a lab environment followed by a field trial as part of its On-Demand Networks program.


ECOMP is the software-based platform developed by AT&T to power its virtualized network. It allows cloud developers to create services and helps service providers and businesses to better control network services, add features and cut down on operational costs. Thus, ECOMP is likely to fulfill consumer interests through improved network adaptability, better scales and ability to meet different needs of consumers.

Growth Prospects

This trial should help AT&T attain its software-centric objective to support the escalating demand for data traffic transmission on AT&T’s wireless networks, which has been exceeding 150,000% between 2007 and 2015. Orange claims that ECOMP is best suited to deal with technological and wireless problems faced by service providers around the world. On the other hand, AT&T claims that Orange's decision to dry-run ECOMP will advance its open-source expansion plans.

AT&T aims to virtualize 75% of its network by 2020 through ECOMP. The company has virtualized 5.7% of its network in 2015. It further intends to transfer 30% of its applications to cloud by the end of 2016.

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Zacks Rank and Stocks to Consider

AT&T currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Better-ranked telecommunication stocks include NTT DOCOMO, Inc. DCM and Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation NTT both of which carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

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