Orchestration is set to drive growth of network functions virtualisation infrastructure (NFVI), a new report has claimed, as operators look to the technology to digitally transform their operations.
The IDC report followed ETSI guidelines in splitting NFVI into five components - software-defined compute, networking, storage, management and orchestration.
Analysts found the latter would be the fastest growing segment as operators look to orchestrate services across "an increasingly complex smorgasboard" of network functions over physical and virtual domains.
SDN will also grow significantly as operators seek to programme and manage network flows in reaction to an everchanging market.
IDC said that while revenues of the technology are relatively embryonic, hitting only $564 million last year, it will hit a compound annual growth rate of 58.1 percent between now and 2022, when it will reach $5.6 billion.
Wireless infrastructure will be the largest contributor to the market, followed by routing. The report noted that 5G, the shift to virtual routing at the edge and access use cases will also drive growth.
Rajesh Ghai, Research Director, Carrier Network Infrastructure research at IDC, said: "Communications service providers globally recognise the need to digitally transform their network infrastructure and build more customer-centric business models.
"Embracing software-defined networking principles and deploying network functions in virtualised form factors are a strategic necessity not only for carriers as they invest in their future but also for vendors supplying those solutions to the market."
Earlier this month, TIM finished its vRAN project in Turin, which it said enabled it to deliver virtualised VoLTE and LTE-Advanced.