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OpenStack makes Ericsson its 8th platinum member

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Open source cloud infrastructure software community OpenStack has elected networking vendor Ericsson to its highest level of membership.

As anyone who has ever been involved in the sponsorship game will be acutely aware, Platinum is the generally excepted precious metal used to denote the highest rung of pretty much anything. Yes, some marketing types get carried away and start going on about gems and the like, but for most sensible, rational people it doesn’t get better than platinum, after which it’s conventional to follow the Olympic medal system.

The OpenStack Foundation value its platinum tier so highly it caps membership at eight companies and doesn’t offer them lightly. Ericsson joins AT&T, Huawei, IBM, Intel, Rackspace, Red Hat and SUSE at the top table with even industry heavyweights such as China Mobile, DT, Cisco and ZTE forced to eat at the kiddie (gold) table.

“Ericsson has taken an active, advocacy role in collaborating with adjacent open source communities like the Open Network Automation Platform and the Open Platform for NFV,” said Jonathan Bryce, executive director of the OpenStack Foundation. “Their leadership stretches beyond the OpenStack community and embraces other technologies critical to the holistic approach for network transformation. They were a logical choice to lead at the highest level of our community.”

“OpenStack is the mainstream production technology for NFV and related technologies,” said Chris Price, open source strategist at Ericsson. “With 14 live OpenStack deployments and more than 80 customers running OpenStack globally, Ericsson is taking this bigger leadership commitment to the future of OpenStack, precisely because it’s proven, powerful and poised to continue leading the software-defined future of networking.”

The whole open source for telecoms thing is under a fair bit of scrutiny these days, with technologies that promised to revolutionise the industry such as NFV taking longer than hoped to start delivering.

The promotion of Ericsson to the top of the organisation is not only a positive statement of intent from Ericsson but renewed endorsement of the open source approach to the next generation of networking technology, which Heavy Reading recently found 86% of the industry think is important to their future success.

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