TM Forum, the industry association driving digital transformation through collaboration, announced the launch of an online Open API lab “platform” that will accelerate innovation for service providers and suppliers. The lab provides an environment where users can learn, innovate and develop applications and new digital services. The platform, developed with IBM and Neural Technologies, is hosted on IBM Cloud.
In today’s rapidly evolving world, the need for experimentation in the R&D process has never been greater. The Open API lab platform will accelerate innovation and support experimentation and prototyping of new services that are underpinned by TM Forum’s Open APIs. By leveraging IBM Cloud, open source capabilities, and Neural Technologies’ Optimus platform, the Open API lab will enable faster deployment of TM Forum’s Open APIs, as well as providing access to many open source technologies, such as Node.js, OAuth2 and Connect ID.
The lab will also have capabilities to build and check the application of Open APIs in TM Forum’s proof-of-concept Catalyst projects, through which TM Forum is driving the industry’s cultural and digital transformation.
The Open APIs are designed to be used as a suite of APIs to maximise their benefits. Lab users will have access to an Open API component framework developed by TM Forum members which will demonstrate how the APIs can be used as a suite to manage end to end services as part of a flow of capabilities.
“The TM Forum Open API lab is the next step in our support for designers, architects and developers to accelerate innovation. The Forum Open APIs enable organisations to reap the rewards of operational agility and business model innovation as it provides a great environment for experimentation and prototype development,” said Joann O’Brien, vice president APIs & Ecosystems at TM Forum.
TM Forum’s Open APIs have been proven to reduce operational expenditure through increased reuse, creating a more agile business where innovation can thrive. Service providers have also advocated the use of Open APIs to reduce integration in the context of mergers and acquisitions.
“As communication service providers look to digitally reinvent their businesses and to support rapidly increasing network demands, APIs and microservices are combining with cloud as the platform for digital innovation,” said Steve Canepa, managing director, Global Telecommunications, Media & Entertainment Industry, IBM. “The IBM Cloud, secure to the core and built to enable agile enterprises, allows CSPs to have access to a rich set of platform services and AI that can be combined with the TMForum Open APIs to speed the development of new digital services and the modernisation of existing applications.
Kai Sui, CEO of Neural Technologies, commented: “We believe that the TM Forum Open API Lab initiative will play a key part in digital transformation strategies, and that the Optimus Platform from Neural Technologies will drive enterprises into achieving complete digitisation of their business.”
“TM Forum members are on a journey of digital transformation, and we support them by providing the tools and services that they need to culturally and technically transform their business in order to grow. The Open API lab will help our members to accelerate their digital transformation strategy,” said Nik Willetts, CEO of TM Forum.
TM Forum’s collaborative work has produced a suite of 50+ Open APIs which have been used by over 670 companies and downloaded more than 22,000 times. They are endorsed by 28 of the world’s leading service providers and technology ecosystem partners and have been deployed in 27 telecommunications markets across the globe.
The Open API lab will be available immediately, with Catalyst and componentised framework capabilities expected to be delivered by May 2018.