MEF has announced several milestones for its MEF 3.0 certifications, fueled by the need for validated services, technologies, and professionals to help enable enterprise digital transformation. More than sixty service providers and technology vendors around the globe now offer MEF 3.0-certified Carrier Ethernet (CE) and SD-WAN solutions.
Four of the top five companies as ranked on Vertical Systems Group’s 2020 U.S. Carrier Managed SD-WAN Leaderboard—AT&T, Verizon, Comcast Business, and Windstream—have achieved MEF 3.0 SD-WAN Certification. In addition, the top four SD-WAN technology providers as ranked by Dell’Oro Group—Cisco, VMware, Fortinet, and Versa—have attained MEF 3.0 SD-WAN Certification.
Thirty-six service providers to date have achieved MEF 3.0 CE Certification, including four of the top six as ranked on Vertical Systems Group’s 2020 Global Provider Carrier Ethernet Leaderboard—Orange Business Services, Lumen, Verizon, and BT.
Driven by the network transformation taking shape in the industry to enable new digital services, MEF experienced a 75 percent annual growth rate in its MEF 3.0 services certifications, which includes SD-WAN and CE. In addition, 7,500 individuals in 85 countries from over 400 employer organizations have earned their MEF professional certifications in SD-WAN, SDN/NFV, and CE.
“This momentum signals that the industry continues to recognize the value of our certifications to ensure simplified, pre-validated functionality for buyers, and frictionless implementation and partnering within the MEF ecosystem,” said Nan Chen, President, MEF. “During this time of tremendous digital transformation taking place in enterprises, MEF 3.0 certified services and technologies are proven to conform to MEF’s meticulous specifications for performance, assurance, and agility. Customers that purchase these services can have confidence that they meet the industry’s highest standards. We applaud all of the companies and professionals that have worked diligently to achieve their MEF 3.0 certifications.”
Adding to MEF’s triad of certifications for services, technologies, and professionals, a forthcoming MEF LSO API certification will offer companies the opportunity to validate that their MEF LSO Sonata and Cantata APIs conform to use case and business requirement specifications established by the industry’s defining authority for standardized, automated network-based services. As part of a pilot program, three service providers—Sparkle, TIME dotCom, and UFINET—are now LSO Sonata-certified for automated ordering of CE Access E-Line services.
Will Eborall, AVP, Product Marketing Management for AT&T Business, commented, “There is value in these certifications, as they align with the telecommunications industry to help deliver the highest quality in networking functions. As companies continue their digital transformation, these standards assist to demonstrate the managed service providers’ compliance in critical service functions around performance, assurance, and agility. It’s definitely accelerated many aspects of our business.”
Daniele Mancuso, Chief Product Management at Sparkle, said,
“Sparkle has always been a firm believer and supporter of inter-provider business process automation through MEF 3.0 LSO Sonata. We were among the first service providers to be production-ready with both seller and buyer modules fully integrated within our Digital BSS; the recent certification was the natural subsequent step to guarantee our partners that will interconnect with us, a full compliance to the standard and a smooth integration process.”
Aamir Hussain, Chief Product Officer, Verizon Business Group, commented, “MEF 3.0 standards help drive SD-WAN and Carrier Ethernet interoperability for enterprises, service providers, and technology developers. Additionally, they drive end-to-end automation resulting in an improved customer experience and lower TCO. As a MEF 3.0 certified service provider, Verizon leverages these standards and capabilities to help drive our own Network-as-a-Service strategy. We are long-time supporters and contributors of the MEF mission.”
JL Valente, VP, Product Management, Enterprise Routing and SD-WAN at Cisco, said, “As businesses accelerate their digital initiatives and adoption of hybrid, multicloud network environments, SD-WAN continues to be the preferred choice for secure access and delivers the best user experience when connecting to cloud applications. To help fuel the growth of SD-WAN services, Cisco is supporting standards and certifications including MEF 3.0 to provide exceptional SD-WAN service capabilities, simplified integration, and peace of mind for optimized application experiences with guaranteed resiliency.”
Rosemary Cochran, Principal & Co-Founder, Vertical Systems Group, said, “MEF 3.0 certifications are having a significant impact on the networking industry worldwide. Our research over many years has tracked the strong correlation between Carrier Ethernet market share leadership and compliance with MEF specifications. Now this trend is developing for Managed SD-WAN as market leading service providers and platform suppliers attain MEF 3.0 certification. Ultimately the advantages gained are competitive differentiation, services assurance for customers, and streamlined collaboration among industry players.”